Though Lars von Trier’s Antichrist only arrives in American theaters this week, the film’s already been infamous for months, owing partially to a scene in which (spoiler alert!) acts of near-unwatchable savagery are committed on Willem Dafoe’s genitals (by Charlotte Gainsbourg, who later treats her own sex organs with similar discourtesy). To hear the booing audience at the film’s Cannes premiere, though, you’d think they’d never before seen a vividly depicted on-screen castration — of which movie history is richly full! Herewith, Vulture’s (NOT SAFE FOR WORK) photo slideshow of the Ten Most Brutalized Wangs in Cinema. (Not for the squeamish, obviously!)
In this year’s critically controversial Cannes sensation, Willem Dafoe’s genitals are smashed with a block of wood and masturbated by Charlotte Gainsbourg until he ejaculates blood (yes, this is seen in close-up). Lars von Trier hasn’t inflicted this much abuse on a nut since he made Dancer in the Dark
The tragic zippering mishap that befalls Ben Stiller’s prom-bound doodle in the Farrelly’s blockbuster remains mainstream comedy’s grisliest-ever penis injury. “Is it the frank or the beans?” asks his date’s stepfather. We’ve seen Mary on Blu-ray and we’re still not really sure.
Inspired by gruesome images of the Vietnam War and a Swedish folk tale that was also the inspiration for Ingmar Bergman’s bleak The Virgin Spring, Wes Craven’s Last House was groundbreakingly vicious. In this sick scene, the mother of a gang-raped, tortured teen takes revenge by taking one gang member’s member into her mouth and chomping down hard. What she does later with a chainsaw is mild by comparison.
Alejandro Jodorowsky’s beautiful 1989 film about a Mexican criminal whose hands do his psychotic, armless mother’s bidding is a weirdo masterpiece that’s all about creative slicing, slashing, and chopping. And despite the film’s profusion of knives, swords, daggers, and other cutting implements, when it came time for our hero’s philandering, knife-throwing father to be subjected to some marital justice, a bottle of acid was the order of the day.
Based, terrifyingly, on a real-life incident
, Nagisa Oshima’s still-controversial drama (about a hotel maid sexually obsessed with her employer) featured unsimulated acts of increasingly intense coitus. Mercifully, he faked the film’s final scene — in which the hotelier dies during a bout of erotic asphyxiation and the maid severs his penis — but that doesn’t make it any less scarring.
Some would say Party Boy was only asking for trouble when he dressed his penis up like a mouse and let Johnny Knoxville dangle it on a string it near the mouth of an unfed snake. Even so, not much could’ve prepared audiences for the inevitable chomp (especially because it happened only four minutes into the movie).
Speaking of rodent-involving genitalia lacerations!: Not only is Re-Animator 3’s unlucky wang bitten off a zombie by another zombie during a coerced act of fellatio, it’s also spit out near a zombified rat who engages the dismembered member in an actual kung-fu battle. At least it fights back, we suppose.
“He’s been castrated! His penis is GONE!” What does it say about John Waters’s Pink Flamingos that its emasculation scene (Wikipedia informs us that this is the correct word to use, not castration), which ended with a dog carrying off the wang in question, isn’t even close to being the most shocking thing in the film?
Seen by many as the ne plus ultra of seventies exploitation cinema, this demented rape-and-revenge fantasy gave us plenty of graphic violence. But not, strangely enough, during the film’s infamous castration scene. This time, director Meir Zarchi somehow found it in him to pull back a bit, letting a cloud of blood in a bathtub do the dirty work — resulting in the one effective moment of subtlety (if it could be called that) in this otherwise delirious trashfest.
Director Marco Ferreri’s demented take on the battle of the sexes, which Vincent Canby once hilariously called “a film that only a very sophisticated society could support,” is probably the only movie in which a man lops off his manhood (with an electric carving knife, no less) to prove a point. The man in question here is a slobbish but young Gerard Depardieu, an impulsive cad lost in a bourgeois world of empty convenience who has been accused by his feminist girlfriend, Ornella Muti, of being nothing without his sexuality. That the film gradually turns Depardieu’s loutish hedonist into a kind of tragic and symbolic figure makes us wonder if somewhere a young Lars von Trier was watching and taking notes.