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Cannes message falls flat with ridiculous row over killer heels


Carol premiere

Carol premiere

Carol premiere

Heels have always been at the forefront of feminism. Now they're at the centre of another feminist row in Cannes.

Apparently, heels on women are "black tie". News to me. I thought "black tie" meant a tin of fruit for the lads and a nice dress, possibly long, for women. I had no idea vertiginous shoes were compulsory.

But the fashion police at Cannes decided to refuse entry to women who were wearing flats at the black-tie premiere of Todd Haynes' lesbian romance Carol.

The move seems to have backfired. Director Denis Villeneuve said he was planning to stage his own protest over so-called Flatgate.

"Benicio del Toro, Josh Brolin and I will walk the steps in high heels," he said.

Now, I'm pro-choice re footwear, so it really irritates me that squishing your hooves into stilettos is considered compulsory.


It is simply not the same as men being compelled to wear ties. Ties never compromise musculoskeletal health. The increased weight on your toes when you wear heels causes your body to tilt forward, and to compensate you lean backwards, creating a posture that can strain your knees, hips and lower back.

Ties don't lead to injured leg muscles, osteoarthritis of the knee and lower back pain. A dicky bow never made a man fall sideways and pull ligaments. Killer heels can really kill you. Or at least kill your feet.

Waging her own war against high heels, Emma Thompson went on stage at the Golden Globes in 2014 with hers in her hand, clutching a martini.

Ironically, this year was meant to be the year of la femme at Cannes. Instead, it's all fallen flat for women. The message - "Can't do heels? Well, don't do Cannes."