Ah, sex scenes. They've been making bad movies tolerable for decades. But when you put a sex scene with a good movie, well now you're cooking with gas! The Independent Film Channel and The Nerve Film Lounge have just released a list of "The 50 Greatest Sex Scenes in Cinema." I should warn you up front, the list does not include any scenes from Wild Things, and therefore is completely irrelevant. It's still well worth a look. Here's their Top Ten: 10) Young Frankenstein (pictured), 9) The Big Easy, 8) Secretary, 7) My Beautiful Laundrette, 6) Betty Blue, 5) The Unbearable Lightness of Being, 4) Risky Business, 3) Mulholland Drive, 2) A History of Violence...And their choice for the Greatest Sex Scene in Cinema is...Donald Sutherland and Julie Christie doing some 70's-style (and rumored to be real!) thrusting in Don't Look Now. (The list also includes a sex scene that blatantly ripped off DLN -- George Clooney and Jennifer Lopez in the excellent Out of Sight, at #26).

The list contains dude-on-dude action (like Poison at #44 and Brokeback Mountain at #23), chick-on-chick action (like High Art at #42 and Bound at #20), and um..."confused" action (Boys Don't Cry at #27). There's hardcore penetration scenes (like those in 9 Songs at #29 and Shortbus at #38). There's one of the most unpleasant sex scenes of all time -- from Todd Solondz's Storytelling (#31), a scene that cleared out more than half the audience I saw it with. The funniest sex scene on there is probably the puppet porno of Team America: World Police at #14, but I've got to give props to their selection from High Fidelity (#41). It's not a turn-on, but it's one of the greatest depictions of jealousy ever put on film -- John Cusack imagining the mind-blowing sex his ex is having with Tim Robbins. There are some pretty baffling selections on the list, most notably Network at #35. I could ask a million people to pick their favorite sex scenes and I don't think a single person would even consider anything from Network. Network! Just to recap -- the list does not include the Denise Richards/Neve Campbell/Matt Dillon/bottle of champage breastacular extravaganza that is Wild Things, certainly the most paused and slow-mo'd film in VHS and DVD history. But it does include Sidney Lumet's satire on the state of television: Network. What would you guys add to or remove from the list?

Just a heads up, the list is arranged in a baffling and obnoxious way that switches you back and forth between Nerve.com and IFC.com. The only reason I mention this is because it shut down my net browser roughly 100 times, causing me to pull my hair out endlessly re-writing this article. Be warned.

categories Cinematical