Ammonite is not the evolutionary leap for lesbian film it thinks it is

Francis Lee’s much-hyped film in fact belongs to a recent tradition of studiously tasteful, sexually fixated work in which lesbians are a world apartLesbians have a love-hate relationship with cinema, a place in which, Andrea Weiss wrote in her 1992 work Vampires and Violets, only one image of the lesbian may surface at any one time.

For at least the past half-decade (since the release of Todd Haynes’ adaptation of Patricia Highsmith’s Carol) that image may look something like this: a period drama with an oedipal understory, chronically white, a sombre mood, dialogue exactingly stark.

A sensorium of touch and taste, the space between bodies, and the yearning therein.

A fantasy for all audiences to enjoy..In these films, the action is silently displayed on faces and behind eyes, before it’s finally loosed in the form of a long, drawn-out sex scene.

In 2013’s Blue Is the Warmest Colour,

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