Netflix has recently come under fire for one of their new movies— a French film known as Cuties (Mignonnes)! As People shares, Cuties has garnered controversy prior to its release because of its seemingly sexualized portrayal of young girls, but Netflix has now spoken out in defense of the movie.

Netflix explains that Cuties "is a social commentary"

Netflix has received a great deal of criticism and backlash surrounding the release of Cuties, with the hashtag "#CancelNetflix" even trending on Twitter in response! However, the streaming service made a statement to People sharing why the movie is an important one, suggesting that people should choose to watch it.

"Cuties is a social commentary against the sexualization of young children," a spokesperson from Netflix explained. "It’s an award-winning film and a powerful story about the pressure young girls face on social media and from society more generally growing up — and we’d encourage anyone who cares about these important issues to watch the movie."

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Maïmouna Doucouré at the Netflix premiere of Cuties (Mignonnes) during the 70th Berlinale International Film Festival Berlin on February 22, 2020.

Cuties initial promotion prompts Netflix to apologize

Cuties tells the story of 11-year-old "Amy," played by Fathia Youssef, a young girl from Senegal who rebels against the traditional culture of her family after she decides to join a school dance team called "the Cuties". As People mentions, the movie was critically acclaimed at the Sundance Film Festival earlier this year, with director Maïmouna Doucouré receiving the Directing Award: World Cinema Dramatic for it.

When Netflix first promoted Cuties last month, they did so with a poster depicting young girls in a sexualized way, wearing skimpy outfits and posing provocatively. The outrage that followed included a petition to cancel the release of the movie, and prompted the streaming platform to end up issuing an apology for their poster and synopsis of Cuties. Now that the movie has been released, it will be interesting to see what Cuties is really like, and if people's opinions change after actually watching it!