Controversy is a strange word in cinema. Some films court outrage as a form of free publicity, many stumble into moral debates by accident and, of course, Auteurs are immune. 2013 barely had a month go by without an outrageous new film gaining headlines for some reason or another, and a particular trend that grew this year, fueled by social networks, was that of the contentious comic book and sci-fi film. As such this list is effectively split in two with the second half dedicated to this growing section of outrage. Of course some of cinema's controversies were not actually in the films but came from comments made during press junkets and promotional tours so some of those have made the list too. As usual with a list like this there are many options that didn't make the cut and for those that did, tread carefully. Spoilers-ahoy!
12. Director Turns Distasteful Voyeur - Blue Is The Warmest Color
2013 Palme d'Or winner 'Blue Is The Warmest Color' has received a lot of praise from critics worldwide and is expected to do well at the major awards thanks to unprecedented success in Cannes, and yet is one of the most controversial films of the year. That controversy all comes down to the inaccurate depiction of lesbian sex, as the scene in question (which has now gone down in cinematic legend) is said to be over long, close to 10 minutes and filmed from a leering male perspective. Julie Maroh, the author of the graphic novel that the film is based on, said of the scene " a brutal and surgical display, exuberant and cold, of so-called lesbian sex, which turned into porn, and made me feel very ill at ease." The thing that made this more interesting and gave strength to these claims was the falling out between the director Abdellatif Kechiche and lead actress Lea Seydoux, which led to Seydoux accusing the director of being exploitative, saying that the scene in question was "very embarrassing" and that she would not work with him again.
Start your WhatCulture Crowd subscription
Exclusive New Videos, Documentaries, Browse WhatCulture.com Ad Free, View Articles On A Single Page & Member-only community forum.