Written and directed by partners Annie Sprinkle and Beth Stephens, Water Makes Us Wet: An Ecosexual Adventure is a documentary about the ecosexual community and our impact on our world today through our destruction of the planet. Annie and Beth are ecosexuals, educators, and activists that travel across California to take a better look at what everyday operations like sewage filtration and spring water collection is doing the planet they love. MTP: ⅖
Review by FF2 Media Intern Maiya Pascouche
Ecosexuality is a radical form of environmental activism that centers around the fetish that Earth is a lover and therefore, we just treat it with respect rather than exploit it. Both Annie and Beth are ecosexuals who have spread this message of love across the world through classes, marches, and videos. Water Makes Us Wet is the start to their trilogy of films that delve into the world of ecosexuals and their relationship to the earth.
The concept of ecosexuality and the fetishization of nature can feel a bit odd when first introduced. In relation to other sexualities, it obviously goes beyond the connection between two human being regardless of gender and rather connects a human being to what makes them a part of nature. For example, Annie and Beth have a water fetish and they feel connected to water because it is the largest element that makes up our bodies. They feel pleasure when in water, having sex in water, treat water as another partner, and they have even gone as far as marrying water. Though ecosexuality is not for everyone, it is a sexuality like all others and the intention of Water Makes Us Wet to shine a light on the ecosexual community is admirable.
However, where the film goes wrong is in the storytelling structure and overall lasting impact of the film. The film opens on Annie and Beth having sex in a desert with water and continues to go through multiple, similar scenes. What is most frustrating about these scenes is the constant pan over Annie’s breasts or the offhanded sexaul comment. It is difficult to take both Annie and Beth seriously when they are trying to have serious discussions about the mistreatment of our planet when in almost every shot, there is a close up of breasts for seemingly no reason other than the two of them deemed it attractive or funny. Therefore, the tone of the film as a whole is confusing and feels lost from the very start. Furthermore, when important environmental facts are being discussed by seemingly qualified individuals (sewage plant workers, national park rangers, scientists) it was difficult to understand the purpose of the interview when the next scene would be about something completely different or would include an intimate moment between Annie and Beth.
Unfortunately, for most of the film I did not know if it should be taken seriously. There were moments when Annie, for example, would become emotionally overwhelmed by a fact about the destruction of our planet, but the tone of the moment was sexual or misplaced. The intention was clearly there. They both wanted to make a film about our impact on the environment, the harm we cause daily, and the positivity of the ecosexual community, but it was overshadowed by their lack of experience in filmmaking and intimate relationship with each other. Sadly, it often felt more like a home video than a professional documentary.
A: Yes!! The film follows two queer women who mostly talk about anything besides men!!