What can I say? I love disturbing movies. Movies that make you go “WTF!” I make my friends watch them so I have someone to talk to about them. They all hate me for it. There’s an abundance of movies that many find sick, strange and disturbing… and while, yes, there is quite a few movies that have made me question humanity and the state of my own psyche, I am yet to find something I can’t watch. I can watch the most bloody and gory scene while eating spaghetti bolognese and not flinch. So please if you have any that’s not on the list below for my messed up brain, tell me some more disturbing cinema scenes. I can’t actually show you most of the scenes but read on below for some of my favorite (is that the right word to use), okay, top? Damn. Anyways read on below for some of the most disturbing scenes in cinema and let me know your thoughts in the comments box provided! (Ps- There is a few I’ve missed out that are always on disturbing movie lists but they did absolutely nothing for me in terms of shock value).
This had to be included based on the strength of two infamous scenes. Utilizing the reverse narrative structure, Vincent Cassel, Monica Bellucci and Albert Dupontel star in Gasper Noe’s brutal drama depicting a nightmarish night out. His style brings a matter-of-fact impact to the plot’s horrific peaks; a brutal ten minute assault in which was one of the most shocking I have ever watched, and a hardcore nightclub murder in which a man’s head is crushed to a bloody paste with a fire extinguisher. Irreversible will test your limits of endurance and probably stay with you for a long time afterwards.
I SPIT ON YOUR GRAVE (2010)-
Another movie with a hard to watch assault, Steven R. Monroe’s remake of the 1979 cult classic, I Spit on Your Grave. Starring Sarah Butler as writer Miss Jennifer Hills, I Spit on Your Grave features a drawn out brutalization scene, which starts off with a mentally ill member of the gang raping Miss Hills and nearly choking her as he climaxes. If that wasn’t bad enough the whole gang decides to have a go. It’s hard to watch alone, let alone with friends or a boyfriend/girlfriend. The saving grace was that Jennifer got her revenge, and gruesomely well.
If you can withstand the first hour of pretty much nothing happening, the last forty-five minutes of Antichrist certainly makes for some disturbing cinema. Lars von Trier’s deep and deliberately provocative Antichrist will have men and women flinching at the dysfunctional grieving couple who retreat to the woods to grieve over to loss of their son. Starring Willem Dafoe whose poor testicles are crushed by his distressed wife (Charlotte Gainsbourg), who then proceeds to pleasure her unconscious husband until he produces blood. Oh and she also performs a female circumcision on herself. Ouchy, ouchy, ouchy.
KILL LIST (2011)-
Many may wonder why this film is here if you have seen it, but for me, Ben Wheatley’s Kill List was awesome for a number of reasons and one of the finest British thrillers in years. It has been one of the rare movies to have me slightly flinching. Ex-soldier and killer for hire Jay (Neil Maskell) agrees to take on a job with his partner in crime Gal (Michael Smiley), but things soon head out of control. Literally. “The Librarian” on the Kill List gets not only a hammer to the knee cap but also his hands and fingers, and finally, his skull in a brutally realistic scene. Hammer horror to the max.
THE POUGHKEEPSIE TAPES (2007)-
If disturbing movies are your thing, like mine, you need to watch the Dowdle brothers The Poughkeepsie Tapes. Unfortunately it’s very hard to find and it never did get a US distribution. The Poughkeepsie Tapes is psychologically terrifying and has so many genuinely disturbing scenes it’s actually hard to pick one. From the hardcore S&M treatment of Cheryl Dempsey, to the killers brazen mocking towards his captive’s families, to the gruesome killing of the mother who stupidly got into the back of a fake police car. That walk on all fours with the mask is something that will forever stay with me. The killer puts his victims through so much psychological abuse that it makes you feel uncomfortable as you watch it. I’m sure there is something in The Poughkeepsie Tapes that will be embedded into your brain for a long time.
Pascal Laugier’s Martyrs starts out like a standard revenge film, with one girl Lucie (Mylène Jampanoï) seeking to turn the tables on captors from whom she escaped many years before. Once the best friend, Anna (Morjana Alaoui), becomes involved the movie morphs into something much more sadistic. When I first saw Martyrs I was genuinely jaw-dropped at the final scene in which our surviving heroine is beaten and skinned alive in order to provide witness to the afterlife for the film’s secret society. Martyrs is very well done and has many bloody parts to remember.
CANNIBAL HOLOCAUST (1980)-
Ten days after the premiere, the film’s director, Ruggero Deodato, was arrested and charged with murder. That’s how realistic the deaths in Cannibal Holocaust appeared to the Italian courts. Deodato had to prove the snuff wasn’t real and produce the still living actors to prove otherwise. It’s also one of the very first movies to introduce the concept of “found footage”. Cannibal Holocaust details the bloody misfortune that befalls an American film crew on location in the Amazon. There’s a number of brutal scenes featured including beheadings, cannibalism, sexual violence, impalement and amputation. This film was banned in many countries and the director faced tons of criticism for killing real animals on film. Cannibal Holocaust is sure to leave even the strongest unsettled. Even Deodato apparently said he wishes he had never made the movie.
MEN BEHIND THE SUN (1988)–
Men Behind the Sun is a film that does not mess around. Tun Fei Mou’s Men Behind the Sun is a historical gore-fest that tells the story of the war atrocities at Unit 731, and what occurred during WWII when the Japanese took Chinese and Russian soldiers as prisoners of war. It’s insanely graphic and features gruesome experiments and some damn disturbing scenes. A live autopsy and a compression chamber in which a man’s intestines are forced out of his body are just two of the graphic and disturbing scenes. Frozen and boiled arms is another, though I’m glad to hear the “cat scene” wasn’t real. (I’m a sucker for a cute kitty). Men Behind the Sun has scenes of brutality done in a matter-of-fact, non-exploitative manner, which only makes it even more terrifying.
A SERBIAN FILM (2010)-
This one just had to be saved until last. This has to be the current titleholder as the most insanely twisted and deeply disturbing film in recent horror history. It’s banned in numerous countries and Netflix won’t even touch it. Srdjan Spasojevic’s A Serbian Film fits in as much depravity as possible with no boundaries, going places many films wouldn’t dare. A Serbian Film follows the story line of an aging adult film star Milos (Srdan Todorovic) who agrees to make a comeback. Unfortunately for him he finds out far too late that the picture he will be making will be the most depraved adult films on earth.