A combination of the erotic with thrillers and psychological dramas is like every film buff’s early Christmas present – it brings in the beautiful synthesis of both worlds that are often not very classy.
While many consider erotica to be a form of art, Netflix has not quite been able to comprehend the term ‘erotic’. Often presenting borderline pornography that indulges in various twisted fetishes, the streamer has yet to master the craft of creating a sublime and sensual immersive experience for the viewers.
While most erotic thrillers on Netflix either see teen comedies or simple obsessive behaviours, the art of erotica lies in how provocative a filmmaker can get, transcending the mere realms of the romantic or sexual fetishes.
Here are the six best erotic films on Netflix for you to enjoy:
The 6 best erotic films on Netflix
6. You Get Me (Brent Bonacorse, 2017)
Essentially a flimsy thriller with plenty of sensual scenes, the film is a commentary on the downside of hook-up culture and obsessive behaviour. Starring Bella Thorne, Halston Sage, Taylor John Smith and others, this wannabe-Fatal Attraction flick falls short and only thrives on the abundance of seduction it has to offer.
Although a high schooler named Tyler is in love with his girlfriend, he hooks up with a mysterious girl named Holly to get back at his girlfriend for her past rendezvous. However, Holly soon becomes a deadly stalker who puts Tyler and everything he cares about in danger.
5. 365 Days (Tomasz Mandes, Barbara Białowąs, 2020)
While the coronavirus pandemic ravaged the world, Netflix viewers found warmth blooming in their chest while witnessing the surreal sexual exploits between the leads in this Polish flick. Starring Michele Morrone and Anna-Maria Sieklucka, the erotic drama became somewhat of a cult favourite.
Kidnapped by the mafia, Laura has a year to fall in love with the leader, Massimo. While many have dismissed the film, calling it twisted and harmful, others have basked in the abundance of sex scenes between the cast leads in unusual places, including an aeroplane and a yacht.
4. Wild Things (John Mcnaughton, 1998)
Starring Denise Richards and Neve Campbell in major roles, the film focuses on an alleged assault claim against a guidance counsellor by two female students that led to an official investigation. However, the detective assigned to the case soon finds out about the sinister nature of the event and tries hard to uncover the truth.
This erotic neo-noir thriller gained plenty of infamy for its sex scenes, mainly between the lead actresses and their threesome with Matt Fillon. More explicit than mainstream Hollywood flicks, it is an essential flesh romp that attracted viewers’ attention.
3. Secretary (Steven Shainberg, 2002)
Adapted from the controversial and eponymous short story by Mary Gaitskill, the film stars Maggie Gyllenhaal as the secretary from a dysfunctional family. After being released from the mental institution for self-harm, she takes up the job at a lawyer’s office. However, she soon indulges in a bizarre relationship with her boss, who is a part of the BDSM world and even indulges in pet play.
In a film that abounds in twisted desires, where the director deals with the subject matter sensually and delicately, there is an underlying sense of sexuality. The climactic scene that focuses on immense self-restraint and obedience that melts his cold exterior, leading to an eventual happy ending, is preceded by a variety of scenes that emphasise this dynamic.
2. Chloe (Atom Egoyan, 2009)
Adapted from the 2004 French film, Nathalie, the film stars Amanda Seyfried, Julianne Moore and Liam Neeson in major roles. A middle-aged couple has lost spark in their sex lives, and the wife decides to test her husband’s loyalty by introducing a seductress.
However, with the younger girl developing feelings for the older woman, the plot begins to spiral down a dangerous path. With palpable sexual tension and plenty of raunchy scenes, the film touches on issues like dwindling marriage, illicit attraction and coital insecurities. Moore had praised Seyfried for being “very dependable”, talking about how the latter did not make the intimate scenes awkward.
1. Eyes Wide Shut (Stanley Kubrick, 1999)
William Harford, a doctor in New York City, and his wife, Alice, attend an opulent Christmas party after which they discuss their sexual fetishes and fantasies. Soon, William is drawn to bizarre orgies where, despite being masked, he is recognised. This poses a great threat to him and his family, who cannot escape it no matter how hard they try.
Stanley Kubrick always wanted to make a sex comedy with a “wide and sombre streak: and ended up making this film that abounds in bizarre sequences. After much persuasion, he was able to convince then-couple Nicole Kidman and Tom Cruise to star as the leads in this sensual and surreal odyssey of sex, tumultuous marriages, nudity and obsession. While Cruise is somewhat cold and forgettable, Kidman leaves an indelible mark with her brilliant performance as Alice.