10 Hardest-To-Watch Movie Scenes

Disturbing just got a whole new meaning.

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Artisan Entertainment

Entertainment and social commentary rolled into one satisfying bundle, cinema captures a unique reflection of our daily lives with each theatrical release. We’re given characters we can relate to, familiar settings, and themes of universal understanding, whether they’re in images that are easily recognisable or not. Sometimes, however, filmmakers want to refract a reality that we’d much rather forget, delving us head-first into the horrors of human nature by sadistically playing them out on screen.

Film can be such a happy thing - a shared experience, a personal journey, an escape from reality - but these ten movies throw that comfort to the wind and bring us face to face with some serious demons. Violence and depravity in equal measure, the darker parts of our existence remain hidden from us in everyday life: these films say no more.

There’s plenty that plays with your psyche and gag reflex abound. Disturbing and dark, unsettling and uneasy, nausea-inducing and just downright nasty, here’s ten scenes that will have you turn off your screen and walk away quietly for some internal reflection. Buckle up for some true WTF moments.

10. 127 Hours - The 127th Hour

Bringing a whole new dimension to getting caught between a rock and a hard place, 127 Hours is a gritty endurance test of how far one man will go to survive.

When Aron Ralston (James Franco) falls whilst out on a climbing trip, he finds himself at the bottom of a canyon with his arm pinned between a dislodged boulder and the canyon wall. He's thoroughly stuck and alone in the middle of the desert. No one knows where he is, where he's gone, or what has happened to him - leaving Ralston's fate, very literally, in his own hands.

Just like the true story, director Danny Boyle subjects the audience to watch Ralston cut his own arm off with a dull, two-inch blade. Working his way through veins, arteries, tendons, and in one particularly wince-inducing chop, nerves - Franco depicts the torturous ordeal as painful reality. Coupled with some horrible sound editing and the tense build up to Ralston's last resort moment throughout the rest of the film, it really is a difficult watch, one that you feel just as much as you see.


Horror film junkie, burrito connoisseur, and serial cat stroker. WhatCulture's least favourite ginger.