Best and worst sex scenes

Best and worst sex scenes

Netflix graphic


“Shakespeare in Love”

Gwyneth Paltrow and Joseph Fiennes really physicalize the title of the passionate, suppressed romance movie called “Shakespeare in Love.” And she won an Academy Award, so she must have put on a great performance. -Eric Judson

“Pretty Woman”

I might be biased given this is my favorite movie of all time, but the sex scene between Richard Gere and Julia Roberts is one for the books. After watching this star-crossed relationship between Hollywood hooker and wealthy business unfold in a way they both would have never expected, the two spend their last night together in bed, but this time with kissing. Though the progression toward intimacy may seem a little discombobulated, this scene will leave you feeling pretty happy as opposed to just plain uncomfortable, the way some other scenes might. As you get to know the actors and their story, you would not be satisfied had their weeklong stay ended any other way. -Greer Russell

Chuck & Blair

This “Gossip Girl” dynamic duo lights things on fire every time they get intimate, with funny role-playing schemes (who ever heard of a waitress fantasy?) to angry “we’re not a couple for some reason” sex, these two have perfected on-screen bumping. If you’re looking for a couple to root for, hit up the beginning of their relationship, where the obstacles aren’t as dire as they are later in the series. And whatever you do, skip Blair and Dan’s fling. -Lindsay Tracy

“Blue Is the Warmest Color”

LGBT sex scenes are altogether rare. Even more rare are LGBT sex scenes between two monogamous women in a loving and emotionally stable relationship. But that’s just what the seven (yes, seven) minute sex scene in French film “Blue Is the Warmest Color” features. Don’t let the long length and bare-ass nakedness of the women having sex intimidate you; the scene doesn’t appeal to raunchy boys at home in bed. Through frank physical intimacy, director Abdellatif Kechiche shows what love can mean and how it feels to be accepted in one’s sexuality, as the main character Adele has sex with a woman for the first time.  -Lindsay Tracy


“The Bronze”

This is a scene that deserves its own category: perhaps the weirdest sex scene or the most acrobatic. “The Bronze” is a movie in which Sebastian Stan and Melissa Rauch play Olympic gymnasts Lance and Hope. I haven’t seen it, but it’s supposed to be terrible. What’s important is the historic sex scene in which the Winter Soldier bangs that chick from “The Big Bang Theory” in complete gymnastic splendor. If you like either of these actors, or even if you don’t, you’ll probably cry from discomfort. I had to dig deep into my Tumblr likes to find the hazy bootlegged copy of the scene and its accompanying GIFs. It begins with a close up of Lance’s crotch tattoo of an Olympic ribbon. So yes, the gold medal is his penis. Shortly after, Hope, naked apart from shoes and socks, gives consent to the following activities by saying “give me that gold.” Remember, the gold is the penis. What follows is one of the most bizarre sex scenes known to man. There’s somersaulting, handstands, push-ups while 69-ing, splits, an unexplained pommel horse move, and several cartwheels. In fact, there’s far more jumping than oral or penetrative sex. Given the little time spent in each pretzel position, I doubt Hope, or even Lance, is getting much pleasure, apart from the adrenaline of the performance itself. Lance, still wearing his socks, does ultimately finish (because the male orgasm is the end all, be all of sex) and we are graced by a full on booty shot. In case you’re interested, Rauch used a body double, but Stan did every scene himself (in a cock-sock of course) except for the pommel horse and a bit where he stretches his leg above his head. I guess I’d recommend watching the scene just to marvel at the spectacle (whether the spectacle is the bods or the feats of athleticism is up to you), but please don’t try it at home. -Kat Schultz

“Forgetting Sarah Marshall”

In “Forgetting Sarah Marshall,” there are quite a few sex scenes that are ingrained, for better or for worse, in our memory. The worst sex scene would have to be the “sex war,” in which Mila Kunis and Jason Segal battle Kristen Bell and Russell Brand across thin hotel room walls for the “best” date night sex. With strong intentions that are not shared by her partner, Kristen’s loud and dramatic act leave everyone involved feeling a little bit uncomfortable. This movie is full of awkward sex scenes, so if you have a moment this Valentine’s Day week, go ahead and choose for yourself. -Greer Russell

“The Notebook”

OK, I know everyone is going to get mad at me for saying this, but what the hell happens in “The Notebook” when Noah and Allie consummate their relationship? Is Ryan Gosling trying to swallow Rachel McAdams’ face whole? Do they realize they’re leaving watermarks all over the house? They are literally lying in their own puddle in the bed. That’s a high price to pay for passion. And not to ruin romance or anything, but why couldn’t Allie just step up and write a damn letter herself or track Noah down? I mean, I know this is the ‘40s and the South and all that, but stop acting like such a helpless victim of everything. God forbid you have to choose between two healthy, rich, handsome men who love you! The horror!  -Lindsay Tracy

Editor’s Note: This article has been updated to correct the name of the character in “Blue is the Warmest Color.”

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