Odd thing about movies: The more explicit pornography proliferates online, the less nudity there seems to be in mainstream films. Perhaps this is a conscious effort to maintain a balance of flesh, so to speak. Perhaps, and more likely, many actors and actresses are ever more conscious about how their nude scenes will be catalogued online; they want to make a daring and sexy scene for a feature film, but are aware that certain “celebrity skin” websites are gathering up such scenes, and turning them into sexy “highlights” reels free of context, and full of buttocks. Occasionally, though, a nice sexy film slips through (so to speak). Paul Schrader's recent film The Canyons, for instance, features copious nudity, scenes of men masturbating on camera, and a notorious foursome scene with Lindsay Lohan and adult superstar James Deen.
CraveOnline has already gathered 10 such movies in the past (in the article The Best X-Rated Scenes in Films), but there is so much more sexiness to explore. Here, then, are ten more of the best X-rated scenes from mainstream movies.
Baise-moi (dirs. Coralie, Virginie Despentes, 2000)
In this modern-day sex revenge tale, a pair of wronged women (Karen Lancaume and Raffaëla Anderson), taking their cue from Russ Meyer films, go on a killing and sex spree. They bed men, discard them, and occasionally kill them. Baise-moi features legit hardcore scenes, but stands as a bold inversion of usual cinematic sexuality. These are not women who have sex to titillate. They have sex for themselves.
The Brown Bunny (dir. Vincent Gallo, 2003)
Largely a slow-moving tale of wallowing self pity, Vincent Gallo's notorious arthouse hit (starring himself) climaxes with an unsimulated scene of onscreen fellatio from Chloë Sevigny. The film is built around this scene of desperate sexual connection, and it's no surprise that both actors are very game. This is one of the few scenes in film history to offer up pornographic imagery for more-than-pornographic purposes.
Shortbus (dir. John Cameron Mitchell, 2006)
A disarmingly emotional film about sex and sexuality, Shortbus tackles a wide variety of sexual activities (threesomes, orgies, masturbation, bisexuality, vibrators) with a frank yet sensitive eye. A “pre-orgasmic” couples counselor (Sook-Yin Lee) attends a New York orgy club to find herself and help some clients. The adventures on which they go are presented straight up, and the film is loaded with sexy sex, awkward sex, and real sex.
Storytelling (dir. Todd Solondz, 2001)
In Storytelling, Selma Blair plays a writing student who is gruffly seduced by her aggressive black professor (Robert Wisdom). Their tryst at his apartment is fast, hard, racially coded, and was so forthrightly sexual, the MPAA threatened to cut it. Solondz, in a fit of cynicism, retaliated by censoring the offending scene with a big red rectangle placed over the actors. It doesn't change the fact that the scene is still pretty X-rated.
Aimée & Jaguar (dir. Max Färberböck, 1999)
Felice and Lilly (Maria Schrader and Juliane Köhler) are a pair of friends living in Berlin in the 1940s. The Gestapo is everywhere, and they both long for love. Felice longs for Lilly, and Lilly finds that she is beginning to have feelings for Felice. Eventually, they admit their feelings, and decide to try lovemaking. The scene that follows is nervous, twitchy, and tentative, as both women strip and try out something new. It's as nervous and as sexy as some experiences you've likely had.
Atonement (dir. Joe Wright, 2007)
The entire first act of Joe Wright's 2007 war epic is devoted to the building of sexual tension between James McAvoy and Keira Knightley. The two clearly want one another, but are too afraid to act. Until one fateful afternoon when they find themselves alone in a library. Without shedding any clothes, the two manage to become entangled up against a ladder. The release of sexual tension is almost like having an orgasm yourself.
Alpha Dog (dir. Nick Cassavetes, 2006)
A cheap and sleazy exploitation movie about teen gangsters, Alpha Dog has become a notorious pseudo-cult hit amongst certain gay men for its copious usage of young male flesh. In the film's most notorious – and sexiest – scene, Anton Yelchin is lured into a swimming pool by the minxy and horny Amanda Seyfried and Amber Heard. The two of them proceed to have a threesome with him underwater. Um... Yes, please.
Lust, Caution (dir. Ang Lee, 2007)
What starts as a WWII spy story quickly turns into one of the more smutty NC-17-rated lust stories that the movies have seen since the days of Oshima. The girlish Wei Tang plays a woman sent to spy on Mr. Yee (Tony Leung), and the two of them fall in lust. A large portion of the film is devoted to their sexual misadventures, which are most certainly not shies away from.
Bound (dir. Wachowski Starship, 1996)
We're all pretty familiar with this one by now. In this indie hit, Gina Gershon (butched out) and Jennifer Tilly (dolled up) play a pair of recent lesbian lovers-turned-thieves who team up to steal a fortune of illegal money from Caesar (Joe Pantoliano), Tilly's evil boyfriend. The clumsy seduction tactics that Tilly employs are silly and sexy and the hottest thing that the Wachowskis have committed to film.
Last Tango in Paris (dir. Bernardo Bertolucci, 1972)
And one can't have a list of sexy sex scenes without a mention of this famous NC-17-rated '70s classic about a pair of wounded strangers (Marlon Brando and Maria Schneider) who randomly meet in an abandoned apartment for desperate and dirty, dirty sex. Sex which both are clearly using to mask their harrowing depression. You'll never look at butter the same way again.