I've read a little about the controversy, and seen a few clips.
The first thing that most everyone misses is that this film is apparently a message film opposed to the hypersexualization of young girls. I won't say the "sexualization" of girls because girls are inherently sexual, but certainly there are degrees of sexual expression and some take it further than others.
And I can get behind a message of opposing a culture which pushes girls to be more explicitly sexual than they naturally are and emphasizes their sexuality to the detriment of their other attributes. I appreciate the sexual allure of girls, but if I was interested in women acting like animals in heat that would be easy enough to find. I personally found the twerking scenes quite unsexy and just uninteresting. Give me a clumsy girl with a goofy grin any day over a perfectly functioning automaton with a steely gaze, and give me a girl with a passion for science or literature or animals or music or something over a girl whose chief desire is to be seen and liked. Give me a girl with a soul.
That opinion might be affected by the girls they chose for the roles. I don't find any of them attractive, which rather surprises me because I find most healthy girls attractive. Maybe it's because they all seem a bit too masculine for my taste - bearing somehow a greater resemblance to 11 year old boys than 11 year old girls. On a scale of 1 to 10 I'd rate them all about a 4 or 5. I realize that's just my preference, but I didn't think my tastes were that rare.
I'm thinking that the furore over this film says far more about the general public being in the grip of a moral panic than it says about us.