D.H Lawrence’s book Lady Chatterley’s Lover has had a naughty reputation ever since it came to print in 1929, and Netflix’s adaptation of the novel is honoring that by being extremely horny. At least, that’s the implication in the trailer, which depicts some very passionate lovemaking between high class wife Lady Connie Chatterley and her ruggedly handsome gamekeeper lover Mellors.
The Lady is played by The Crown’s Emma Corrin, and Jack O’Connell is the titular character. We’re first introduced to him by his naked behind soon after Lady Chatterley comes to her ailing husband’s estate in the country. The film is directed by Laure de Clermont-Tonnerre, who wants viewers to take away more than titillation.
“When I reread the novel, I thought it could have been written today,” de Clermont-Tonnerre told Vogue in an interview. “It’s scary that not that much has changed since the ’20s. As women, we’re still fighting for equality. The idea of a woman being free is still scandalous. You only have to look at what happened with Roe v. Wade, and what’s happening now in Iran. This book is about a woman’s journey to empowerment, to controlling her body, owning her sexuality and owning her life. My goal was to emphasize her point of view, and to give the audience a visceral experience of a woman experiencing pleasure. It needed to feel accessible.”
The trailer definitely feels visceral.
Corrin was very much on board with de Clermont-Tonnerre’s vision, telling the director, “‘I want to explore that feeling of ecstatic freedom’...Emma’s such a free spirit and I think they wanted to express that through Connie.”
The film did have an intimacy coordinator on set, Ita O’Brien, who worked on Hulu’s Normal People, so viewers can enjoy the intimacy knowing there was a lot of communication and consent involved and a whole lot of rehearsal. Corrin told Vanity Fair that the “sex scenes would never feel gratuitous and it would always feel justified.”
“I felt so in awe of it, and also of Connie’s whole journey with her sexuality and her own access to pleasure and her body,” Corrin added.
The film will premiere in theaters on November 25 and be available to stream on Netflix on December 2.