Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Awkward sex

In honor of the recent Thanksgiving Break, where I spent the vast majority of my time sitting around, drinking Tab (you're missing out if you don't know why that is awesome) and watching movies with my family, I have decided to bring you my personal top ten list of Most Awkward Sex Scenes in Film.*

(PS, I know the title of this blog post is sheer numbers bait.  Judge away.)

10. Righteous Kill

Aside from the fact that both Robert DeNiro and Al Pacino spend the movie trying to pretend they were 15-20 years younger (seriously, isn't there a retirement age in the NYPD?), this film also features Robert DeNiro fulfilling the rape fantasies of a much younger female psychiatrist.

That's the picture of mental health.

9. Risky Business

The sex montage included positions on a staircase.  A STAIRCASE.  And no one even threw down a yoga mat first.

8. A History of Violence

Not only was there a staircase sex scene (complete with shot of resultant bruising - seriously, YOGA MATS, people) but a scene where the wife dresses up like a cheerleader for her husband since they never got to have sex in high school.  

Can I mention I watched this with my dad?

7. Munich

Just a thought - if you can't stop thinking about murdered Olympic athletes and all the international crimes you committed to avenge them, maybe you should go make yourself some herbal tea.

6. [I'm saving this spot for Breaking Dawn: Part 1.  I've just got a feeling about it.]

5. Brokeback Mountain

It's not just the fact that Jake Gyllenhaal and Heath Ledger are basically beating the crap out of each other before they start making out.  It's mostly the fact that Heath Ledger hocks a loogie into his palm before they move from making out into more scandalous territory.

From Diego: "Seriously, so gross.  And not to be tmi, but that was not going to cut it."

From Rick: "I was living in New York when it came out, and all my friends were gushing about how realistic it was--'Of course that's how it would have to be, for them to finally be together!  It would be passionate and angry!'  I was like, 'Um, no.  That would have forced both characters back in the closet back in the closet for at least three years.'"

4. Avatar

I'm not sure which is worse.

A. Ponytails.

B.  The fact that Pocahontas-Stands-With-A-Fist-Crysta's parents can smell her de-virginized status the next day.

I might be leaning toward A.

3. Atonement

I try to refrain from broad generalizations (no, I don't), but whenever people start blathering about how Americans are so uptight when it comes to sexuality, I just want to point to this movie as Exhibit A of why they are wrong.

Scene: Two hot British people are going at it against a bookcase in a library.  Girl's creepy younger sister walks in on them, says, "Cecilia!" like the shocked ghost of a 90-year-old Victorian lady.  (If you saw it, you know exactly what I mean.)

What an American would do: Jump apart.  Guy scampers off.  Girl, faced with the prospect of forever traumatizing her younger sibling, takes the tyke aside and explains that sometimes grown ups do stuff, nothing scary about it, no biggie, but she needs to forget what she saw and never speak of it again.

What a Briton would do (and did, in the movie): Sloooooowly disengage.  It's like the little girl is a T-Rex and they figure if they move gradually enough, she won't see them.  Straighten clothes.  Snootily toss heads.  Go back to dinner.  Pretend nothing happened, but skip the crucial step of impressing on the little girl that NOTHING HAPPENED.

Sorry kids, but the real reason for all the tragic misunderstandings in Atonement is a lack of sisterly candor.

This is not normal behavior after a pre-teen catches you doing the nasty.

2. Enemy At The Gates

It really doesn't get any worse than dirty Soviet soldiers getting horizontal in a sewer, surrounded by other sleeping dirty Soviet soldiers, pausing only briefly when somebody walks by.  

Really.  They kept going after that.   

1. Watchmen

You know what I'm talking about -- the three minute sex scene set to Hallelujah (great song, uncomfortable usage) that included thigh-high hooker boots.  It's like a thousand horny nerds got together and decided how this scene should be shot.  I loved reading Watchmen, and I still like the movie, but seriously.  The spaceship shooting flames at the ... uh ... crucial moment?  

Keep in mind that this movie also prominently featured a giant blue glowing shlong, so the fact that this scene prompted the most giggles from the audience really says something.

* I would like to thank Diego, Sandy, Rick, Anna, Julie and that weird guy who kept suggesting Short Bus (gross, no) for helping me to refine this list during Diego's birthday party. 

For the record, nothing that was actually gag-inducing was considered because (a) I probably haven't seen them and (b) this list is about awkwardness, not grossness.  If I go to a mainstream film and then am confronted with an unrealistic, bizarre, overly long or overly detailed love scene, that's awkward.  If I go rent some smut and some smut happens, that's just a given.  For similar reasons, comedies were not included, because if awkwardness is the point (ahem, people who kept suggesting Bruno and Superbad and MacGruber) then it's not really awkward, is it?

Ponder that, my Zen friends.


  1. Suddenly I have absolutely, positively no desire to see Avatar. I thought I was the last person who hadn't seen it!

  2. I agree with so many of these.. SO MANY! And I love Atonement, but the sex scene was pretty damn awkward. It was the noises! And A History of Violence TRAUMATIZED ME FOR LIFE.

  3. Titanic, though that might be because I saw it with my mother, in the theater, while going through puberty.

  4. Have you seen nip/tuck? I realize it is a TV show, but it seems the EVERY SINGLE EPISODE has at lease one awkward sex scene.

  5. Colt - Titanic is pretty awkward, for a lot of different reasons, including the fact that I swear Kate Winslet looks 15 years older than Leonardo DiCaprio in that movie. (Not ripping on Kate - Leo just looks like a wee little baby.)

    Nat - OMG, Nip/Tuck. So uncomfortable, yet so amusing.

  6. Holly Crap Ma'am! That is the funniest thing I've read all day. You've made my week with this post. Double Like.

  7. You missed one - Glenn Close and Michael Douglas having sex on the stove in the boiling bunny movie "Fatal Attraction".

    I took my Mom to see it when I was 18 [I think] and during that scene she gripped my hand and whispered "It is NEVER like that Skippy." I thought to myself "Well I hope not." Because, honestly, who has sex on the top of an electric stove.

  8. I would like to defend Avatar a little.
    To those who don't know, the "ponytail" looks like a ponytail, but it has brain stem filaments that the Navi people use to connect with animals and direct them, becoming one.

    In the sex scene, the two's "ponytail" filaments intertwined. While seemingly awkward, let me propose you this; while in the act of sex, how much would you give to know how the other was feeling? To know how much pleasure your partner is feeling? This does that. It takes them to a new level of intimacy where they feel what the other is feeling, and if either is doing something awkward, they can change it.

    So while it looks awkward, don't diss the ponytail.