May 012016


What constitutes a sexy movie? Is it something explicit like the shooting a Cadbury Cream Egg ejaculate into one’s mouth like Short Bus? No. Is it a movie that features ONE blindingly good sexy scene a la Neve Campbell and Denise Richards’ pool party in your pants in Wild Things? No. A sexy movie is about tension or sexual energy between the characters. A sexy movie immerses you into a filmmaker’s voyeuristic gaze; appraising beauty and passion of the characters. A sexy movie is about being tempted with what’s forbidden and occasionally giving in and having a taste. With that in mind, here’s my Top 10 Sexiest Films of All Time. In no particular order…


Tom Hiddleston and Tilda Swinton are vampires Adam and Eve in Jim Jarmusch’s glorious and understated tale of eternal love. Only Lovers sexiness is all about the timeless beauty and compatibility of the performers. Contrasting features and garb, uniquely angelic androgyny, Hiddleston and Swinton convey a deep spiritual connection that gives them magnetism that’s so sexy you want to join their blood fuelled ecstasy.


Steven Soderbergh’s crime comedy, adapted from the Elmore Leonard novel of the same name starring George Clooney and Jennifer Lopez plays like watching two tigers, coiled, crouching and ready to pounce on each other. The infamous prison escape scene shot from the inside of the trunk of a car, lit from the red brake lights is as hypnotic and erotic as any explicit sex scene. The intimacy under duress, and the hints that in another circumstance, outside of the bounds of what’s right, George would definitely take a tour around Jenny’s trunk.
If there’s anything sexier than Rene Russo entrapping Pierce Brosnan’s wily thief with that occasionally see-through black sequined dress, I’ll eat my hat. This ridiculously entertaining game of cat and mouse between bored millionaire thief and insurance recovery detective is expertly handled by John McTiernan (Die Hard, Predator); it’s also fun because it’s age appropriate. It’s not wild adolescent love, these are two foes that see the inherent risks of what they’re about to undertake and despite being smart enough to know better; they can’t help but indulge.


There’s a reason that Ryan Gosling’s character in Crazy Stupid Love uses the 100% successful “Swayze Dirty Dancing” manoeuvre to seal the deal with prospective lovers. Dirty Dancing is the original and perhaps the best. The setting plays up the restrictive 1950s conservativism in the affluent summer camp community. Bubbling underneath, the camp employees burst with vitality, sexuality and movement. Jennifer Grey’s Baby is ready to tear out of the white knitwear and find herself; and Swayze’s Johnny is there, with irresistible hips to catch her.
Now I know that Ed Zwick’s pharmaceutical comedy set at the rigid  peak of the viagra era ultimately packs a pretty devastating punch as the story reaches its tragic crescendo; but you cannot deny the sheer ferocity and abandon with which stars Jake Gyllenhaal and Anne Hathaway enjoy each other. Watching their addiction to each other unfold physically and romantically, in every room of their houses, is just the sexy that the pharmacist ordered.


CIPic (1)
As a young man, hearing Sarah Michelle Gellar, say the line “you can put it anywhere…” practically took my virginity. This slick modern adaptation of book “Les Liaisons Dangereuses” brought together a group of Hollywood’s most beautiful young stars (SMG, Ryan Phillipe, Reese Witherspoon and Selma Blair) and pitted them against one another in a predatory bet to deflower the rich innocent, for the opportunity to win Sébastien’s (Phillipe) ride (the 1956 Jaguar Roadster) or take a ride of the incomprehensibly perverse and alluring Kathryn (SMG).


It would almost be remiss of me not to give special mention to Allen’s Match Point starring Scarlett Johansson and Jonathan Rhys Meyers, whose steamy affair almost melts the paint off the walls. However, Johansson and Rebecca Hall take a trip to Barcelona and fall for the same man, Javier Bardem. And because that’s not enough incredibly beautiful women for Javier, Penelope Cruz wanders into proceedings to reclaim her man regardless of the other beautiful women he’s sleeping with. Scar-Jo developing black and white photography with Cruz and stumbling out of a dark room to explore each other should come with a warning.


Alfonso Cuaron’s coming of age tale of male sexuality is a shock to the system. Unlike anything that would be allowed in the Hollywood mainstream, Y Tu Mama Tambien (roughly translated meaning ‘And your mother too’) follows two young friends who are experimenting with their bodies that culminates with every young man’s dream, an older woman to coach you on the ways of the world. The clincher is how the boys are confronted with a fluid and mature view of sexual pleasure outside of the rigid gender roles that their masturbation clouded minds are yet to grasp.


DESPERADO, Salma Hayek, 1995
Robert Rodriguez’s remake of El Mariachi not only added budget, but the two castings of Antonio Banderas and Salma Hayek that made it undeniably sexy from the outset. It’s not only the Spanish accent, the beautiful poetry of the language; there’s more. Rodriguez frames Banderas’ Mariachi in the most provocative and empowering manner throughout the film; you’re willing this engorged character to be enveloped by this soft and “car accident causing” beauty; it’s sensual to the point of disorientation.


Everything you need to read about the sexiness is in (shameless plug) a new ‘Screen Masculinity Column’ that Garth Franklin and I collaborated on. Get your sexy eyes all over it here.
Disagree? I’ll correct you in the comments below.


Blake Howard he tweets at @blakeisbatman and writes at Graffiti With Punctuation.
P.S try eating a cream egg again.