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Disturbing Movie Moments: Can't Unsee *That*!

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 Two scenes in Fruitvale Station, the true story of the murder of Oscar Grant III, brilliantly played by Michael B. Jordan, were very disturbing: the hit-and-run of the pitbull and the murder itself.

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Since The Lobster has only had a limited release so far I'm going to spoiler tag these, but there were two scenes in that film that made me cover my eyes: 

that one scene where Heartless Woman has killed the adorable dog Bob (god, his eyes), and the scene where Lisping Man gets his punishment for having masturbated

. The whole film is full of low-key disturbing bits (although very funny at the same time) but those two, oh man.

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What Nurse Ratched does to Billy in One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest was horrible. When the poor guy finally starts standing up to her, she breaks him down again by bringing up his mother -- which is really low, since Billy's inability to function in healthy relationships kind of implies sexual abuse though I don't know if the film really confirms it -- and basically drives him to suicide.

Who would have thought that timid guy would go on to voice Chucky?

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Revenge of the Sith: Anakin storms the younglings' room in the Jedi Temple. The kids run up to Anakin: "Master Skywalker, what are we going to do?" Anakin glares at them, and the last thing we see before they cut to another scene is the children's frightened faces as Anakin ignites his lightsaber....

Chilling. And one of the few moments when the prequels capture the essence of Darth Vader.

That scene was so upsetting to me that I have refused to re-watch the movie (despite many a plea from my family). I still become teary upon any recollection.

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The "I'm A Dentist" number in Little Shop Of Horrors still makes me squeamish. Especially when they show him drilling into that poor guy's mouth with the perspective from the inside of the mouth *shudder*

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  From Mad Max: Fury Road, the scene when Splendid was killed while she was pregnant was horrifying enough, but when her baby was born dead, it was devastating.

 

  The premise of Spotlight, the 2015 Oscar nominee for Best Picture about the Boston Globe's exposing pedophiles in the Boston Catholic church is disturbing enough, but it's being based on a true story makes it even worse.

Edited by DollEyes
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Wiendish Fitch, on 27 Jul 2014 - 2:01 PM, said:

It's fairly mild in comparison to all others mentioned, but it's still pretty disturbing if you think about it too long:

 

In The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie, our titular character, a pretentious, inappropriate, dictator-worshipping "zany free spirit", is indoctrinating a new generation of young classmates to her line of thinking. In the beginning of the movie, before we knew more about Brodie, it was kind of charming, but now that we see what kind of monster she really is, hearing those little girls robotically say, one by one, "Yes, Miss Brodie", is rather chilling. I mean, that's not the behavior of a class, it's the behavior of a cult.

 

And then there's what happened to Mary MacGreggor, a lonely girl who only wanted to be loved. :(

 

Has Akira been mentioned yet?  Because all of Akira is fucked up!  White fluid spewing giant animals, man getting liquidated by machine gunfire, Tetsuo growing out of control, the old cult lady telling her followers to "not be afraid" to go into the fire, the title character's dissected remains in translucent containers, elderly blue skinned psychic children (or is it childlike blue skinned psychic old people), and what happens to Kaori.  Poor, poor Kaori.  Squish.

 

Also how Murphy's physical body is destroyed in Robocop, along with the toxic waste scene.  Also was a bit unnerved by the bit with the New Year's party during the sequence of when Murphy is becoming the title and he's coming in and out of unconsciousness.

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Has Akira been mentioned yet?  Because all of Akira is fucked up!  White fluid spewing giant animals, man getting liquidated by machine gunfire, Tetsuo growing out of control, the old cult lady telling her followers to "not be afraid" to go into the fire, the title character's dissected remains in translucent containers, elderly blue skinned psychic children (or is it childlike blue skinned psychic old people), and what happens to Kaori.  Poor, poor Kaori.  Squish.

 

And yet the bit that always makes me squirm the most is when Tetsuo stands on that shard of glass, then pulls it from his foot. Akira is really my only extended exposure to Japanese animation, because any other stuff I've seen has been lousy. It's weird, but mostly in a good way. The body horror stuff is gross, though.

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I don't know about disturbing, but it sent chills down my spine. I refer to the scene in Poltergeist (the original one) when the medium explains the motives of the spirits. Her soft voice combined with the menacing score, really sets the mood.

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There are many disturbing scenes in The Inevitable Defeat Of Mister & Pete, the story of Mister, a young, Black boy & Pete, his younger, Asian foster brother struggling to survive in NYC when Mister's junkie prostitute mama is arrested, but some of the most disturbing are when Mister catches his mama shooting up & later sees her turning a trick in a public bathroom. But the most disturbing of all were Mister's reactions, like he'd not only seen it before, he was used to it.  

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The horrible horrible fate of Nick and the pregnant females in Bone Tomahawk. It is gruesome as all hell. I highly recommend this flick though. Probably one of my favorites in a few years. 

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I was watching Superman III on SyFy this weekend and the "bad" Superman sequences still skeeve me out. I don't want to see Superman -- especially not the much-beloved Christopher Reeve Superman -- binge drinking in bars and hooking up with bimbos!

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Bumping it up to mention that the scenes in Sicario of the corpses buried in the walls of a house in Arizona and naked corpses hanging in public were equally disturbing. 

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On 6/30/2015 at 8:31 PM, Ohwell said:

In The Kingsman the guy gets split in half.  I totally wasn't expecting that and it just freaked me out.

See, I always wondered why the Kingsmen was rated R because from the previews, it looked like a PG-13 movie. Now that makes sense.

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On 7/3/2016 at 3:36 PM, DollEyes said:

Bumping it up to mention that the scenes in Sicario of the corpses buried in the walls of a house in Arizona and naked corpses hanging in public were equally disturbing. 

I'd forgotten about that scene--in a movie filled from beginning to end with disturbing images. it was still a well-made movie, though.

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From The Revenant, the scene when a French soldier raped an Indian woman and the scene when Hugh Glass was forced to gut his just-killed horse in order to use his carcass to sleep in were both disturbing. 

Edited by DollEyes
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2 hours ago, DollEyes said:

From The Revenant, the scene when a French soldier raped an Indian woman and the scene when Hugh Glass was forced to gut his just-killed horse in order to use his carcass to sleep in were both disturbing. 

 

Which is exactly why I won't watch this movie, even though it's on HBO now.

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9 hours ago, cpcathy said:

 

Which is exactly why I won't watch this movie, even though it's on HBO now.

I won't watch it because of Leonardo DiCaprio's dumb face.

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From Star Wars: Return Of the Jedi, the scene when Jabba the Hutt sticks out his nasty tongue to a disgusted Leia is too wrong on too many levels. 

Edited by DollEyes
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I could go on and on about The Fly (1986). Jeff Goldblum was great, but there were too many "Ewww" moments for me to ever see the movie again: Jeff peeling off his ear and the inside-out monkey to name two. 

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3 hours ago, topanga said:

I could go on and on about The Fly (1986). Jeff Goldblum was great, but there were too many "Ewww" moments for me to ever see the movie again: Jeff peeling off his ear and the inside-out monkey to name two. 

Yeah, that's pretty much Cronenberg's wheelhouse.

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One that always stays with me is The War Zone directed by Tim Roth. I saw it years ago and it still haunts me. I’m putting the scene(s) in spoilers because I basically give away the plot (and it’s not pleasant).

Spoiler

The scene I will never get over is where the bother sees his father and sister having sex in a hot tub. It was beyond disturbing for me and it was made worse by the sister seemingly not fighting her father off. You later find out he has been rapping her years but she has a sort of Stockholm syndrome going on. It all eventually comes to a head and the brother stabs the father in the stomach at the end of the film. One of the most difficult films I ever watched. 

Edited by double-elvis

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I saw/loved Get Out recently, which had many disturbing scenes, especially

the premise, about an affluent, supposedly "liberal" White community that kidnaps, drugs and brainwashes Black people into slavery, when the hero Chris went to the "sunken place" and the auction scenes.

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Very annoyed last night to watch "Nocturnal Animals" not knowing anything about it. There is an extended long scene in there where a hapless family has a run in with about 10 young hicks on a high way in West Texas with no cell service that is absolutely horrific.   What bothered me about it was that it was obvious what was going to happen but it just went on and on and on... that is the most horrifying part of movies. When they make you sit and watch long after you got the idea. It is as if it is happening to you. I turned it off but it stayed with me.  And I have seen Henry Portrait of a serial killer. 

The story is supposed to be revenge on the woman reading the story but it felt like Tom Ford was getting revenge on the audience...

And of course there are the fat naked ladies doing a fat naked dance at the start -- which clearly is done in a way that is supposed to disgust you. 

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18 minutes ago, BooBear said:

And of course there are the fat naked ladies doing a fat naked dance at the start -- which clearly is done in a way that is supposed to disgust you. 

I couldn't tell if he was making fun of them or the art world.

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9 minutes ago, AimingforYoko said:

I couldn't tell if he was making fun of them or the art world.

More like both.  But it just was an assault on the audience from start to finish. 

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I also wasted my time watching it. Afterward, I wondered what the point was in all of it. I looked up some plot synopses and reviews, but I still don't get it.

I don't like Amy Adams, and I have no reason for it. Meanwhile, I have liked Jake Gyllenhaal since "Donnie Darko".

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I've seen quite a few disturbing scenes in films over the years, and quite a lot have left a lasting impression (most of them involving animals, children or abuse against women)

But there's one particular scene that really creeps me out, sends shivers down my spine and grates my teeth. And yet to a majority of people they would think "meh!"

The scene in question is from John Carpenter's excellent "The Thing", and two characters (Windows and Nauls, I think) have to give blood samples to make sure they're not "the Thing". You see a close-up of them intentionally cutting their fingers with a scalpel, from which their blood oozes out.  And it's the actual cutting that really creeps me out, yet I really don't know why?

In other films I've seen decapitations, eye-balls explode, disembowelment etc, but none of them really bothered me that much. But that finger-cutting scene in The Thing, disturbs the hell out of me! 

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"Robocop." The whole movie disturbed me as a child and I can never bring myself to re-watch it.

Also, the first 10 minutes of "A Time to Kill." The rest of the movie is wonderful, though.

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On 8/23/2017 at 2:43 AM, Zola said:

I've seen quite a few disturbing scenes in films over the years, and quite a lot have left a lasting impression (most of them involving animals, children or abuse against women)

But there's one particular scene that really creeps me out, sends shivers down my spine and grates my teeth. And yet to a majority of people they would think "meh!"

The scene in question is from John Carpenter's excellent "The Thing", and two characters (Windows and Nauls, I think) have to give blood samples to make sure they're not "the Thing". You see a close-up of them intentionally cutting their fingers with a scalpel, from which their blood oozes out.  And it's the actual cutting that really creeps me out, yet I really don't know why?

In other films I've seen decapitations, eye-balls explode, disembowelment etc, but none of them really bothered me that much. But that finger-cutting scene in The Thing, disturbs the hell out of me! 

I'm just going to nominate 1982 version of The Thing in its entirety as disturbing.  It's definitely a classic, but it's basically 2 hours of gross-out with the couch scene as the pièce de résistance.

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  • From Detroit-which is, IMO, one of the best films of the year-
    Spoiler

     The scenes in the Algiers Motel are not only disturbing on several levels, I was cringing the whole time. I even closed my eyes during a couple of scenes, but I'm glad I saw it anyway because it's an important story that deserved to be told.

     

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The rape scene in Straw Dogs.

Am a big fan of Dustin Hoffman, and have seen most his films, but never this one - primarily because of the violence, but also the rape.

Despite not being overly graphic, it left nothing to the imagination, which I felt was completely unwarranted, as well as being disturbing. I am not even sure whether the scene added much to the story, and even if it did it could have been handled with far more subtlety.

But I guess that's not one of director, Sam Peckinpah's priorities. 

Edited by Zola
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Call Me By Your Name.  I'll write it as a spoiler since many people are still catching up on the nominated movies:

 

Spoiler

I didn't need to see Elio masturbating with a piece of fruit, nor did I need to see Oliver threaten to eat it afterwards.  Ew.  Nor did I need to see a deep kiss after one of them had just thrown up a couple of times.  Double ew. 

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3 hours ago, DollEyes said:

The last few minutes of BlacKkKlansman are very disturbing, to say the least. 

Not to mention the sequence of the klan watching Birth of a Nation just to cheer on the lynching interchanging with an elderly black man recounting how his poor friend got lynched to a civil rights meeting.

Edited by Spartan Girl
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3 hours ago, DollEyes said:

The last few minutes of BlacKkKlansman are very disturbing, to say the least. 

I live in Virginia, and that was an unexpected gut punch.

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1 hour ago, Spartan Girl said:

Not to mention the sequence of the klan watching Birth of a Nation just to cheer on the lynching interchanging with an elderly black man recounting how is poor friend got lynched to a civil rights meeting.

I had a really hard time sitting through that scene.  I know we were supposed to, but still, it was probably the most uncomfortable I've felt in a long time.

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2 minutes ago, Shannon L. said:

I had a really hard time sitting through that scene.  I know we were supposed to, but still, it was probably the most uncomfortable I've felt in a long time.

Right?! I felt physically ill.

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 I live in Virginia, and that was an unexpected gut punch. 

Same here. That the scene shows how much some things still haven't changed despite the past few decades of progress makes it even worse.

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