Top ten uncomfortable films that involve incestWarning - some clips are a bit NSFW
Incest: it’s the game the whole family can play. Not only that, it’s the kind of creepy, sleazy, taboo sex that movies can indulge in without having to actually show anything sexual. Of course, incest is also the kind of thing that intelligent, sophisticated people accuse residents of backwards backwater countries of getting up to, which is why only half the films on the following list come from Australia.
After all, sometimes having 25 million people to choose from just isn’t enough to stop you from rooting your brother.
10: Beautiful Kate: Or as I like to call it, 'The Sex Beast Lives'.
Out on an isolated farm your typical Aussie family deals with typical Aussie problems: dad’s a drunk, mum’s dead, and for some reason one of the sisters thinks having sex with her brother would be a really top idea. Eventually he figures out this would actually be a bad idea so she decides to show him by having sex with her other brother, which might have worked only she decided to make the moves on him in a moving car which he then crashed, killing her. Then the brother hanged himself, the other brother grew up to be Ben Mendelsohn, and Wog Boy 2: Kings of Mykonos became a box office hit.
9: End of Days
When Satan comes the town, what’s the first thing he gets up to before trying to kill Arnold Schwarzenegger? That’s right: a threesome with a mother and daughter. Yes, this technically might not count as incest, but you know it’s going to involve some awkward looks over the breakfast table the next morning. Also, this scene is roughly a dozen times more badass than the lame knock-off they tried in Machete.
8: Caterpillar Wish
In a small coastal town, a young girl’s coming of age involves getting it on with the local stud. Bad news is, turns out the stud might be her half brother. Worse news is, even after she finds out this could very well be a bromance she still goes back to him. Seriously? It’s not like Luke Skywalker kept going after Leia once he found out they were siblings. Though if he had, that would have made for a cool space dogfight between Luke in an X-Wing and Han Solo in the Millennium Falcon. Kinda surprising there wasn’t a fan-made clip of that on YouTube really.
7: Spanking the Monkey
So a guy is forced to return home and live with his mum, who then has sex with him when he’s drunk – no big deal. At the time when it was rumoured that writer / director David O Russell had made this film to piss off his own mum (who he supposedly did not like), people laughed. How could he be so nasty? And then it turned out that he had a screaming match with pretty much everyone he’d ever worked with (George Clooney, Lily Tomlin, Pee Wee Herman) and suddenly it all made sense. Way to stick it to your mum.
6: Bad Boy Bubby
This one’s pretty much a smorgasbord of all-Aussie creepiness, so the mother / son incest actually doesn’t seem all that bad. Hell, there has to be some kind of upside to being trapped inside the same house for over 30 years, and if happens to be that you end up doing your mum, well, the family that plays together stays together, right?
5: Angels & Insects
You do know that “insect” is an anagram of “incest”, right? Oooh, metaphorical. Which raises the question: do insects have incest? And if not, why are we watching this movie? This one’s about an insectologist who discovers that his snooty aristocrat wife has been banging her brother since forever and all his kids are actually the result of inbreeding. Guess he was too busy with the insects to notice the kids just wouldn’t stop playing the banjo.
Teens: when they’re not shooting each other in high schools, they’re raping their sisters and getting them pregnant. Yes, it’s another all-angst arthouse “classic” from the Land Down Under; guess you’ve got to get people watching Australian films somehow. What, making them entertaining wasn’t an option?
3: Old Boy
Again, it’s pretty much a cavalcade of nuttiness here, so when it’s revealed that the one woman who can sexually ease the pain of a former businessman turned into a killing machine by well over a decade of solitary confinement is in fact his daughter… eh, just go with it. Wait, you want to cut your own tongue out instead? Ok, if that works for you.
These days, if you’re making an arthouse film in Australia today, you basically have two metaphors to choose from. Either love is like drugs (forbidden, against society’s rules, and yet so overwhelming it can be denied), or love is like incest (forbidden, against society’s rules, and yet so overwhelming it can’t be denied). But back in the '80s incest still had a bit of shock value in Australia, and Bliss’s sex scene between lead Harry’s two degenerate kids initially got the film banned. Eventually the R18+ rating was overturned, thus opening the floodgates for the wave of all-Aussie incest arthouse directors are still surfing to this day.
1: House of Yes
While there were a bunch of candidates for the number one slot – Tom Roth’s The War Zone is a brutal look at the personal cost of incest, Chinatown is a authentically awesome film where incest symbolises corruption and moral dissolution, and Flowers in the Attic is the kind of hilarious teen angst that makes you wonder why there wasn’t more inbreeding going on in Twilight – in the end House of Yes had one thing no other film could match: the always hot Parker Posey getting a little too close with her brother. Because, at its heart, isn’t seeing hot people getting it on in forbidden ways what movie incest is all about? Dear God I hope so.
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