Most Controversial Films of the 21st Century

Throughout history there have been plenty of movies deemed controversial. While some of them were related to violence and political issues, the majority of them hit with this description involved sex. In the 21st century, a time where casual sex isn’t really a big deal and both men and women are encouraged to explore their “wild side”, there are still plenty of controversial films for adults that involve sex. The following looks at five movies considered to be some of the most controversial of the 21st century.


Released in 2009 and starring Julianne Moore and Amanda Seyfried, Chloe covered a variety of sexually taboo topics, including lesbian sex and a huge age gap, infidelity, sex workers, and adultery. Far and away, the most controversial part of the movie involved a lesbian sex scene, which is something rarely seen in Hollywood films.

Brokeback Mountain

Who can forget all the controversy this movie was released to in 2005? Constantly condemned for having a “gay agenda” and being “morally loose”, Brokeback Mountain still received awards and critical acclaim for the portrayal of a homosexual relationship between two cowboys, played by Heath Ledger and Jake Gyllenhaal, in love.

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

Released in 2011, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo includes the brutal sexual assault of the young lead character by her court appointed legal guardian. It has been described as one of the “most disturbing scenes in existence”. It doesn’t get much better when the main character retaliates by sexually assaulting her attacker and leaving him with the word “rapist” across his chest.


Filled with violent, sadistic, and masochistic sex acts that include the removal of a woman’s clitoris, smashed testicles, and the ejaculation of blood, the 2009 film Antichrist is simply brutal and highly controversial. It starts in the very first scene when a couple’s infant son falls out a window while they are having sex and just gets more controversial from there.


Released in 2006, Shortbus holds the record for being the most sexually graphic movie ever released in non-porn theaters in America. There is plenty of both hetero and homosexual un-simulated sex, as well as a gay ménage a trois scene complete with oral sex, an orgy, a dominatrix with a sex whip, masturbation, and much more.

While some of the films were certainly more controversial than others, they all managed to get the American public completely stirred up. They are the most controversial adult films of the 21st century so far.

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