Disturbing Films

During my attempt to find the best movies ever made, I determined that movies, in order to be considered great, needed to appeal to one or more of our emotions. One emotion always eluded me in film, fear. I rarely felt fear/shock or horror. So I set out on a separate venture, to find the craziest, most disturbing films ever made.

The list compiled below is what I have found so far. I have not seen every one of these films, but I've seen a lot of them. I use this as a sort of watch-list as well. The reason the movie made it on this list is either I found it disturbing in some manner, or it is well known to be disturbing to most people.

This list wont necessarily "scare" you in the sense that Hollywood directors attempt to. You aren't going to "jump out of your seat." You should, however, feel disgust, psychological fear, contempt for the human race, etc...

Watch a few and let me know what you think.
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1.
Salò, or the 120 Days of Sodom (1975)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.0/10 X  
Four fascist libertines round up nine adolescent boys and girls and subject them to one hundred and twenty days of physical, mental and sexual torture. (116 mins.)
 
2.
Lilya 4-Ever (2002)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  
Sixteen-year-old Lilja and her only friend, the young boy Volodja, live in Estonia, fantasizing about a better life. One day, Lilja falls in love with Andrej, who is going to Sweden, and invites Lilja to come along and start a new life. (109 mins.)
Director: Lukas Moodysson
 
3.
Enter the Void (2009)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  
A U.S. drug dealer living in Tokyo is betrayed by his best friend and killed in a drug deal. His soul, observing the repercussions of his death, seeks resurrection. (161 mins.)
Director: Gaspar Noé
 
4.
The Devils (1971)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
In 17th-century France, Father Urbain Grandier seeks to protect the city of Loudun from the corrupt establishment of Cardinal Richelieu. Hysteria occurs within the city when he is accused of witchcraft by a sexually repressed nun. (111 mins.)
Director: Ken Russell
 
5.
Martyrs (2008)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
A young woman's quest for revenge against the people who kidnapped and tormented her as a child leads her and a friend, who is also a victim of child abuse, on a terrifying journey into a living hell of depravity. (99 mins.)
Director: Pascal Laugier
 
6.
A Serbian Film (2010)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.2/10 X  
An aging porn star agrees to participate in an "art film" in order to make a clean break from the business, only to discover that he has been drafted into making a pedophilia and necrophilia themed snuff film. (104 mins.)
 
7.
The Seventh Continent (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
A European family who plan on escaping to Australia, seem caught up in their daily routine, only troubled by minor incidents. However, behind their apparent calm and repetitive existence, they are actually planning something sinister. (104 mins.)
Director: Michael Haneke
 
8.
The Snowtown Murders (2011)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  
Based on true events, 16 year-old Jamie falls in with his mother's new boyfriend and his crowd of self-appointed neighborhood watchmen, a relationship that leads to a spree of torture and murder. (119 mins.)
Director: Justin Kurzel
 
9.
Gummo (1997)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  
Lonely residents of a tornado-stricken Ohio town wander the deserted landscape trying to fulfill their boring, nihilistic lives. (89 mins.)
Director: Harmony Korine
 
10.
Julien Donkey-Boy (1999)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  
A portrait of the effects of schizophrenia on family life is the central focus. (94 mins.)
 
11.
Irreversible (2002)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
Events over the course of one traumatic night in Paris unfold in reverse-chronological order as the beautiful Alex is brutally raped and beaten by a stranger in the underpass. (97 mins.)
Director: Gaspar Noé
 
12.
Guinea Pig: Ginî piggu - Akuma no jikken (1985 Video)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.0/10 X  
A group of guys capture a young girl with the intent of hurting her. They torture her in many ways,... (43 mins.)
Director: Satoru Ogura
 
13.
El Topo (1970)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
A mysterious black-clad gunfighter wanders a mystical Western landscape encountering multiple bizarre characters. (125 mins.)
 
14.
The Holy Mountain (1973)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  
In a corrupt, greed-fueled world, a powerful alchemist leads a Christ-like character and seven materialistic figures to the Holy Mountain, where they hope to achieve enlightenment. (114 mins.)
 
15.
Caligula (1979)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.2/10 X  
Details the graphic and shocking, yet undeniably tragic story of Rome's most infamous Caesar, Gaius Germanicus Caligula. (156 mins.)
Director: Tinto Brass
 
16.
Possession (1981)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
A woman starts exhibiting increasingly disturbing behavior after asking her husband for a divorce. Suspicions of infidelity soon give way to something much more sinister. (124 mins.)
 
17.
Eraserhead (1977)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  
Henry Spencer tries to survive his industrial environment, his angry girlfriend, and the unbearable screams of his newly born mutant child. (89 mins.)
Director: David Lynch
 
18.
Inland Empire (2006)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.0/10 X  
As an actress starts to adopt the persona of her character in a film, her world starts to become nightmarish and surreal. (180 mins.)
Director: David Lynch
 
19.
August Underground (2001 Video)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 3.8/10 X  
Two serial killers go on a murdering rampage as one films the outcome from behind a video camera. (70 mins.)
Director: Fred Vogel
 
20.
Men Behind the Sun (1988)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  
Japanese troops round up Chinese and Russian prisoners of war and take them to a place called Squadron 731, where they are grotesquely tortured and experimented on to test new biological weapons. (105 mins.)
Director: T.F. Mous
 
21.
Begotten (1990)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.0/10 X  
This gory and entirely visual film tells the surreal tale of the death and rebirth of gods. (72 mins.)
 
22.
Funny Games (1997)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
Two psychotic young men take a mother, father, and son hostage in their vacation cabin and force them to play sadistic "games" with one another for their own amusement. (108 mins.)
Director: Michael Haneke
 
23.
The Woman (2011)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  
When a successful country lawyer captures and attempts to "civilize" the last remaining member of a violent clan that has roamed the Northeast coast for decades, he puts the lives of his family in jeopardy. (101 mins.)
Director: Lucky McKee
 
24.
I Spit on Your Grave (1978)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  
An aspiring writer is repeatedly gang-raped, humiliated, and left for dead by four men whom she systematically hunts down to seek revenge. (101 mins.)
Director: Meir Zarchi
 
25.
Antichrist (2009)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  
A grieving couple retreat to their cabin in the woods, hoping to repair their broken hearts and troubled marriage. But nature takes its course and things go from bad to worse. (108 mins.)
Director: Lars von Trier
 
26.
Cannibal Holocaust (1980)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.0/10 X  
During a rescue mission into the Amazon rainforest, a professor stumbles across lost film shot by a missing documentary crew. (95 mins.)
Director: Ruggero Deodato
 
27.
Aftermath (1994 Short Film)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.0/10 X  
A short film wherein a man working in a morgue mutilates and defiles one of the corpses. He takes the heart home to his dog. (30 mins.)
Director: Nacho Cerdà
 
28.
Visitor Q (2001 Video)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  
A troubled and perverted family find their lives intruded by a mysterious stranger who seems to help find a balance in their disturbing natures. (84 mins.)
Director: Takashi Miike
 
29.
In a Glass Cage (1986)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  
In Spain, the former Nazi doctor Klaus tries to commit suicide jumping off the roof of his manor. However... (110 mins.)
 
30.
Audition (1999)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  
A widower takes an offer to screen girls at a special audition, arranged for him by a friend to find him a new wife. The one he fancies is not who she appears to be after all. (115 mins.)
Director: Takashi Miike
 
31.
Threads (1984 TV Movie)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  
Documentary-style account of a nuclear holocaust and its effect on the working class city of Sheffield, England, and the eventual long-term effects of nuclear war on civilization. (112 mins.)
Director: Mick Jackson
 
32.
Ichi the Killer (2001)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
As sadomasochistic yakuza enforcer Kakihara searches for his missing boss he comes across Ichi, a repressed and psychotic killer who may be able to inflict levels of pain that Kakihara has only dreamed of. (129 mins.)
Director: Takashi Miike
 
33.
In My Skin (2002)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  
A woman grows increasingly fascinated with her body after suffering a disfiguring accident. (93 mins.)
Director: Marina de Van
 
34.
Léolo (1992)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
Young Leo Lauzon is torn between two worlds - the squalid Montreal tenement that he inhabits with his... (107 mins.)
 
35.
Three... Extremes (2004)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
An Asian cross-cultural trilogy of horror films from accomplished indie directors. (118 mins.)
 
36.
Ravenous (1999)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
In a remote military outpost in the 19th Century, Captain John Boyd and his regiment embark on a rescue mission which takes a dark turn when they are ambushed by a sadistic cannibal. (101 mins.)
Director: Antonia Bird
 
37.
Tideland (2005)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  
Because of the actions of her irresponsible parents, a young girl is left alone on a decrepit country estate and survives inside her fantastic imagination. (120 mins.)
Director: Terry Gilliam
 
38.
Storytelling (2001)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  
College and high school serve as the backdrop for two stories about dysfunction and personal turmoil. (87 mins.)
Director: Todd Solondz
 
39.
Man Bites Dog (1992)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
A film crew follows a ruthless thief and heartless killer as he goes about his daily routine. But complications set in when the film crew lose their objectivity and begin lending a hand. (95 mins.)
 
40.
Jacob's Ladder (1990)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
Mourning his dead child, a haunted Vietnam War veteran attempts to discover his past while suffering from a severe case of dissociation. To do so, he must decipher reality and life from his own dreams, delusion, and perception of death. (113 mins.)
Director: Adrian Lyne
 
41.
Sweet Movie (1974)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  
The intercut story of two women: a nearly-mute beauty queen who descends into withdrawal and madness... (98 mins.)
Director: Dusan Makavejev
 
42.
WR: Mysteries of the Organism (1971)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.0/10 X  
A homage to the work of psychologist Wilhelm Reich, matched with a story about a Yugoslavian girl's affair with a Russian skater. Sexual repression, social systems and the orgone theory are explored. (84 mins.)
Director: Dusan Makavejev
 
43.
Masters of Horror (2005 TV Series)
Episode: Imprint (2006)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.0/10 X  
In the 1800s, an American returns to Japan to find the prostitute he fell in love with, but instead learns of the psychical and existential horror that befell her after he left. (60 mins.)
 
44.
Nekromantik (1987)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.2/10 X  
A street sweeper who cleans up after grisly accidents brings home a full corpse for him and his wife to enjoy sexually, but is dismayed to see that his wife prefers the corpse over him. (75 mins.)
 
45.
Bad Boy Bubby (1993)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  
Bubby has spent thirty years trapped in the same small room, tricked by his mother. One day, he manages to escape, and, deranged and naive in equal measures, his adventure into modern life begins. (114 mins.)
Director: Rolf de Heer
 
46.
Naked Lunch (1991)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  
After developing an addiction to the substance he uses to kill bugs, an exterminator accidentally murders his wife and becomes involved in a secret government plot being orchestrated by giant bugs in a port town in North Africa. (115 mins.)
 
47.
In the Realm of the Senses (1976)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  
A passionate telling of the story of Sada Abe, a woman whose affair with her master led to a sexual obsession which then came to a violent end. (109 mins.)
Director: Nagisa Ôshima
 
48.
Marquis (1989)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  
The scene is a pre-French Revolution Bastille, where various political prisoners are being held: a woman who was raped and impregnated by the king... (83 mins.)
Director: Henri Xhonneux
 
49.
Ken Park (2002)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  
Ken Park is about several Californian skateboarders' lives and relationships with and without their parents. (93 mins.)