con·tro·ver·sy [kon-truh-vur-see; Brit. also kuhn-trov-er-see]
–noun, plural -sies.
1. a prolonged public dispute, debate, or contention; disputation concerning a matter of opinion.
2. contention, strife, or argument.
CONTROVERSIAL MOVIE CLUB looks at films that have historically been considered “controversial.” these films have challenged and polarized audiences, making bold statements about “taboo” subjects and calling into question what is acceptable in cinematic portrayals of sex, violence, religion, and politics. a “controversial” film will ask you to define things like “art,” “porn,” and “exploitation,” and explore the room in between. is a film worth watching, or is it interesting, if it breaks taboos only; what makes a film “good” other than “enjoying” the watching of it, when certain acts are extremely unpleasant to watch?
“controversial” is, of course, a loaded term, and a lot of other films could be considered as contenders for this list, but these films have certainly shaken up film audiences or the media in one way or another, though some of them may seem tame by comparison today. the films are presented in roughly chronological order (by year, at least).
for further reading, there are similiar lists of “the most controversial films” at filmsite, time out new york, sky, spill, and just break. there are also two other great mubi lists here and here. also see lists of banned films, “mainstream” films with unsimulated sex scenes, films with full-frontal male nudity, and the infamous video nasty list. stephen tropiano also wrote a book on the subject.Weniger