5 sadomasochist and dominant films better than 50 Shades of Grey (NSFW)

It’s Friday the 13th and 50 Shades of Grey is out, which is actually kind of funny because the film is just as bad as people say it is. Despite everything, there are indeed some good things in the film, like the quantity of nudity that was more than I was expecting, the cinematography which is respectful, and the directing that thanks to Sam Taylor Johnson presents a film that probably looks better if watched on mute, because let me tell you, the script is bad! But since I love sexual themes on film, especially when they go weird, I made a list that can’t even be compared with the 50 Shades of Grey, but contains some similar subjects that are way better explored on cinema. Here they are!

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The Night Porter (1974) by Liliana Cavani

If sexist people think the problem with 50 Shades of Grey is because it was written and directed by a woman, you thought wrong! The Night Porter was also directed by a woman and is probably the most incredible and beautiful film about sadomasochism ever made. Yes, films with such themes can be beautiful and The Night Porter certainly is. Charlotte Rampling plays her most famous character as a German Jew after the World War II who visits a hotel and finds one of the Nazi soldiers who used to abuse her during the Holocaust, taking us back to her past in a Nazi sadomasochistic group where the German Jew used to be part of. However, instead of showing sex and men beating woman, the film contains itself by showing musical performances of naked woman and men dressed as clowns in leather jackets. The film talks about “joy divisions” who were a group of women taken to give sexual pleasure to Nazi soldiers. The film goes even further when the woman and the soldier meet for the first time after the war and start to have the same kind of relationship they had during those meetings.

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Cruising (1980) by William Friedkin

If you are into sadomasochism or curious about the subject, Cruising is a film that hides nothing – and actually goes deeper by presenting the subject in the gay world. Al Pacino plays a police officer who infiltrates in sadomasochistic gay clubs at night to find a serial killer who is killing gay men with such fetishism. The film was extremely controversial when released because Cruising is indeed shocking even nowadays. Trying to find the serial killer, Al Pacino goes to these clubs to observe, just like gay men who are cruising for sex. With that, we are presented to a very hardcore world, where men fist themselves at clubs, have all kind of orgies and wear the weirdest leather things. And yes, the film shows it all. It’s not 100% explicit but it’s graphic enough for you to have a disturbing idea of what is it. And the film is also very dark, with a heavy script and an ambiguity that makes Cruising a very, very interesting good film.

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Shame (2011) by Steve McQueen

Jamie Dornan has full frontal naked photos on the internet but Fifty Shades of Grey only shows a tiny bit of his penis. It’s not about wanting to see more penises on-screen but to end the taboo of male full frontal nudity in Hollywood cinema. There is a reason why 50 Shades was classified as older only for 12 years-old audiences in France – that’s because they are used to seeing naked people on cinema since the ’60s. And thankfully, Steve Mcqueen thinks the same in Shame, where the film opens with Michael Fassbender’s cock, that became as famous as the actor thanks to its size. But why would you put that on-screen? Well, the film is about sex and porn addicted, so why not? The film might not be that hardcore or hard to watch, but it’s indeed powerful and extremely beautiful. Using just a few dialogues, very long shots, and just a few characters, Shame says way more with its silence and simplicity than the horrible script of 50 Shades. While Grey has to prove his manhood by saying “I don’t make love… I fuck. Hard”, Fassbender only shows his modest-sized cock.

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The Piano Teacher (2001) by Michael Haneke

Probably one of my favorite Michael Haneke films, The Piano Teacher is not about showing much but the concept is really interesting, original and shocking. It’s Michael Haneke, what would you expect? Isabelle Huppert plays Erika, a very uptight piano teacher who lives with her mom and whose influence Erika escapes only by her regular visits to porn cinemas and peep shows. Her sexuality is an affair of morbid voyeurism and masochistic of self-mutilation. Her world starts to fall apart when she falls in love for one of her students and she tries to introduce to him her twisted and pervert world. Also incredibly powerful, the end of The Piano Teacher will definitely make you feel something, even if you don’t know exactly what it is.

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Nymphomaniac (2013) by Lars Von Trier

Is impossible not to think about Nymphomaniac when you watch 50 Shades. There’s even a moment in the film where Grey does exactly the same thing as the picture above and says “I’m gonna hit you 6 times”. In Nymphomaniac, however, Jamie Bell, or K, hits the woman more than 20 times… and she cums with it. And that’s just a part of this four-hour sex odyssey. Nymphomaniac is better, heavier, more complex, intelligent and everything else you would like to have seen in 50 Shades. As I said before, you can’t compare any of these films with the Grey movie, especially because Nymphomaniac talks about other subjects, which is nymphomania. But it’s impossible not to talk about this film and especially put it as first on this list. If Von Trier goes extreme in this “art” piece, Sam Taylor Johnson does exactly the opposite by presenting a commercial and soft version of what sadomasochism really is. Nymphomaniac, however, is way more shocking, graphics and interesting.