Movies are a medium of expression, and with expression, more often than not, comes dissent. Movies can attract controversy over a variety of issues, and can become engraved in the public memory due to it. This is a list of some such movies…
Intentionally or unintentionally, nothing sells a movie more than a controversy. The movies in this list did raise eyebrows, but garnered finances too.
Although these movies are considered divisive, they were seen by some as masterpieces in their genre, leading some of them to even winning the Oscar. Underestimating their value as works of art, based on their divisive content, could be a big mistake, as many of these movies didn’t just set the cash registers ringing, but also enthralled many a knowledgeable critic. All things considered, compiled below is a subjective list of the ten movies that generated the most amount of controversy in the history of world cinema.
The Most Divisive of Them All
|The Da Vinci Code||2006||Ron Howard||Accused for controversial interpretations of Christian history, this movie was criticized for implementation of its theories about Christianity and the life of Jesus Christ.|
|Fahrenheit 9/11||2004||Michael Moore||The film accused the Bush administration of making use of the September 11 attacks to raise backing for the Iraq war. The movie generated a lot of contrasting opinions by depicting the attacks on the World Trade Center, followed by the soldiers torturing Iraqi citizens.|
|The Passion of the Christ||2004||Mel Gibson||Criticized for being antisemitic, and for misrepresentation of the scourging of Christ at the hands of the Romans.|
|Dogma||1999||Kevin Smith||Showed that God is fallible, which was conceived as a slur by Christians. The movie received countless hate mails and threats, including death threats to the director.|
|Kids||1995||Larry Clark||Depicting teenagers’ uncontrolled attitude towards sex, alcohol, drugs, etc., this movie showed parenting at its worst.|
|Natural Born Killers||1994||Oliver Stone||The movie represented the media’s addiction with sensationalism, and came out to be extremely disturbing and violent, as some scenes depicted hard-hitting shooting sprees and massacre.|
|Cannibal Holocaust||1980||Ruggero Deodato||True to its name, the movie was extremely violent and gross, with forced abortions, castrations, animal massacre, gang rapes, and beatings shown so much, that the director was abducted for proving that no one was really killed in the movie.|
|The Message||1976||Moustapha Akkad||Depicted the beginning of Islam and the times of Mohammad, the prophet of Islam. Due to shooting complications in Mecca and Medina, the film caused riots for two days, and was eventually considered as an insult to the religion.|
|Deep Throat||1972||Gerard Damiano||A hardcore porn film, this movie was controversial for the obscenity content in it, and was banned for 10 years straightaway in the UK. It was available only in licensed sex shops.|
|Baby Doll||1956||Elia Kazan||Again, for pornographic content. This movie caused controversy throughout the US due to suggestions of extreme erotica, though very little was actually portrayed on the screen. It was withdrawn from most theaters in the US.|
Many other can rightfully be claimed to qualify for this list. Here are some of them:
- The Birth of a Nation (1915)
- Triumph of the Will (1935)
- Bonnie and Clyde (1967)
- The Devils (1971)
- A Clockwork Orange (1971)
- Last Tango In Paris (1972)
- The Exorcist (1973)
- Salo /The 120 days of Sodom (1975)
- I Spit On Your Grave (1978)
- JFK (1991)
World cinema boasts of some phenomenal documentaries and movies that make you think again about family values and political correctness. While some may consider massacres the way of life, and enjoy utter bloodshed in the most gruesome ways, some may consider even the Harry Potter series as disputable, for they use magic (no kidding, I tumbled upon a site that called the poor scar-ridden kid controversial!).
A notable fact to mention about these movies is that many were only even slightly ‘indecent’ at the times of their release, and would be considered nothing like it if viewed today. This just shows how the customs of a society keep changing.
While these were controversial, many of these were genuinely good movies. So if you wanna know what the fuss was all about, ready your popcorn!