How to Be a Slut in a Good Way

Director and stars of teen comedy-drama take on a new kind of sex ed

The teenage years can be rough. Besides the woes of puberty and awkward crushes, teenagers are put in a tricky position - being too young while also being too old. It makes growing up even more confusing, a timeless subject that director Sophie Lorain has honed in on in her latest film Slut in a Good Way.

"When the camera stopped rolling, the cast would continue to talk and talk about sexuality with boys and girls." Marguerite Bouchard on playing Charlotte in Slut in a Good Way

On first glance, Slut in a Good Way (originally titled Charlotte a du Fun, or Charlotte Has Fun in its native Canada) is in your face. But underneath its punchy title is a funny and poignant coming of age tale on growing up and exploring one’s sexuality that Lorain has been working on for years. And what drives the film is its main trio of friends - Charlotte (Marguerite Bouchard), Mégane (Romane Denis) and Aube (Rose Adam). As Charlotte deals with her first heartbreak, the girls decide to cheer her up by applying to work at the Toy Depot because, well, there’s plenty of cute boys there.

As a story focusing on a certain time in one’s life, one of the most important things for Lorain was to get the casting and chemistry of the girls just right. When Bouchard first started auditioning, she almost didn’t land the part of Charlotte. “Sophie thought that I was too young for the character. But when she saw me like a year later, I was the right age for the movie.”

After auditioning a multiple combination of trios, Lorain heard Bouchard, Denis and Adam in the next room. “I could hear laughing, giggling, and I said to our casting director, I hope they are as good as they seem to be having fun because this is a winning combination.” Adam said this whole experience was something special and different and Bouchard agreed. “It was literally magic.”


Austin Chronicle: This movie feels very much like a love letter to teens and for female friendships. Did you feel like you learned a bit while playing these characters?

Marguerite Bouchard: I think that we knew that there is a double standard towards women, and we have to be equal. But I think that when we did this movie, I realized that these topics are for everybody and not just girls, but boys as well. Boys have these questions about female sexuality. When the camera stopped rolling, the cast would continue to talk and talk about sexuality with boys and girls. So I think for me, I've learned that boys have to talk to and boys have something to say...

Sophie Lorain: ... To add as well.

MB: Yeah, as long as it’s nothing negative. It was really nice to hear what they have to say.

Rose Adam: I think in the movie we talk so openly about orgasms or things that I wouldn’t personally talk about so openly, like with boys or large groups. And the fact that we had that opportunity and made a movie about it, I think that that unlocked something for me personally. These topics should be talked about freely and openly. There's a lot of different opinions, and we got to see that in the movie, but we also got to see that in real life because we met so many people. So yeah, I think I learned more from the group of people we were with than my character personally.

“You’re probably going to listen to your friend more than your mom, and you’re probably going to mess up, but then you learn.”
AC: The topic of slut shaming and sexuality is something a lot of teenagers, especially girls go through. It’s this timeless idea which is why, to me, the movie is in black and white.

SL: I wanted this movie to be a bit like a fable. It’s storytelling. A jewel box that generations can watch later on.

AC: There's something about the black and white being able to show extra emotion and wonder. In terms of it being a fable, is that why there are little to no adults?

SL: Léa (Marylou Belugou) is the oldest character. She’s 19 and preggers. It’s another situation, for her, where sexuality has gone one step further. The thing I told to Catherine Lager, the author of the film, whom I’ve worked with before, I think you got to get rid of all the adults. There weren't that many, but the very little we had were already too much for me. I said, those questions belong to these girls and these boys. It's up to them to solve their own problems and to go and see each other or talk to each other, in order to find some answers or their own answers without any judgments or morals or advice.

RA: Because that's what happens in real life. Your parents give you advice, but in that point in your life, you’re probably going to listen to your friend more than your mom, and you're probably going to mess up, but then you learn. So, I feel like that makes sense because that phase of life, the teenage years, you're so focused on yourself and your group of people.

SL: It doesn’t compute.

AC: You kind of have to live it yourself.

SL: Exactly. And I think they're intelligent enough to do that. And that's why I didn't want them to interact with any adults whatsoever. I think it makes them more clever and more intelligent as well. We look at those three girls, and I always had the feeling that that's what I wanted to do with the movie. Although it's a light comedy and it’s not really dark, there are layers and layers in that movie, and if one is open to see it, they will. But I think that when you look at those three girls, you're full of hope for them in their adulthood. They’re three clever girls, and they'll make it through. They have an interest in life. You know, they're all confused and all of that, but there is something deeper inside, all these mixed feelings, the sexuality as well as everything. So it makes more complete human beings.


Slut in a Good Way opens this weekend. For review and listings, see our Showtimes.

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for almost 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

READ MORE
More by Savannah J Salazar
<i>Star Wars</i> Satire <i>¡Estar Guars!</i> Gets Laughs and Gets Political
Star Wars Satire ¡Estar Guars! Gets Laughs and Gets Political
Latino Comedy Project takes on planetary issues

May 1, 2019

Indie Meme Highlights South Asian Cinema
Indie Meme Highlights South Asian Cinema
Film festival brings outsider stories to the forefront

April 26, 2019

KEYWORDS FOR THIS POST

Slut in a Good Way, Marguerite Bouchard, Sophie Lorain, Rose Adam

MORE IN THE ARCHIVES
NEWSLETTERS
One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Can't keep up with happenings around town? We can help.

Austin's queerest news and events

New recipes and food news delivered Mondays

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle