Sexy Baby is a 2012 documentary that examines what is like for women to grow up in a cyber society fixated on sexiness. The documentary opens with a little girl dancing to Lady Gaga. Although the audience knows that the little girl’s moves are innocent, a feeling of discomfort lurks in her every step. The audience knows that the disco stick in “Poker Face” is not simply a glittery toy.
This sense of discomfort that is illustrated in the opening sequence extends to every moment of the documentary. After the dance introduction, the documentary then transitions into a profile of Nikita Cash, a former adult actress, Winnifred, a young 12 year-old, and a young kindergarten teacher who is hopeful that her labiaplasty will maker her more attractive. We know these women; heck may even see them walking down the streets or in those pestering, sexploitive pop-up ads. In the documentary, we see them in a different light. Sexy Baby tackles the question of how this heavy presence of sexuality is reinforced, and furthermore how this saturating sexuality effects our younger population.
Although Sexy Baby is compelling and introduces serious issues regarding being raised in a sexploitive society, the documentary only explores these complicated ideas at the surface level. The documentary presents an issue and doesn’t provide a clear stance on where it comes from. The documentary feels fixated on sex and how it is represented in the cyber age; however, it is not convincing in centering the issue in a cyber society. Instead, the documentary feels vague. Initially, the vagueness of sexploitation works to the documentary’s benefit. However, toward the end, the documentary becomes a tangled pool of compelling but half-thought out ideas. Despite its faults, Sexy Baby is a compelling documentary, which forces the audience to confront the issues of sexploitation that seem so engrained in our society.