12 Incest Movies That You Will Never Watch Again (2022)

12 Incest Movies That You Will Never Watch Again (2022) – Incest movies are uncommon, especially nowadays, but like violence, crime, or horror, incest is a theme that directors can explore or exploit depending on their purposes. Films about incestuous relationships between mother and son, father and daughter, brother and sister, sister and sister, or brother and brother have frequently been accused of being emotionally exploitative, offensive, evil, and mindlessly provocative, and those accusations are, to some extent, true.

So far, incest films have been limited to low-budget productions involving a small group of actors, and none of these films have earned general critical praise. However, there have been films that investigate the emotional aspects of incestuous relationships and how people were emotionally driven or coerced into forming an incestuous connection.

Let’s be clear about one thing: we’re not talking about incest porn movies here, but rather depictions of incest in mainstream films. With that said, let’s take a look at the top incest movies that were courageous enough to explore the complicated theme. The majority of the films on the list are about family incest. There have been few films on gay or lesbian incest, but they do exist. The good news is that you can watch some of these excellent incest films on Netflix, Hulu, or Amazon Prime. I’ll Close My Eyes (1991)

  Close My Eyes (1991)

‘Close My Eyes,’ starring Alan Rickman and Clive Owen, is the story of an incestuous connection between a half-brother and half-sister, Richard and Natalie. Despite the fact that the brother and sister have been separated since childhood and have grown up in different families as a result of their parents’ divorce and re-marriage, they strike a chord when they finally reconnect after a long time apart. Natalie is married to Sinclair (Rickman), a wealthy stockbroker, and she works in a recruiting firm. Natalie’s younger brother, Richard, is a town planner. As frightening as it may sound, Natalie and Richard’s only attraction is their lust for one another.


 Ma Mere (2004)

‘Ma Mere,’ arguably the most divisive film on the list, is easily the most distressing and unwatchable film about incest ever filmed. The film stars Isabelle Huppert as an incestuous mother who is fascinated with sex and invites her son to have sex with her. Helene requests that her son physically harm her by cutting her abdomen, and as his masturbation achieves its peak, she slices her own throat. The picture is openly provocative and, for the most part, unwatchable, yet you can’t take your gaze away from an explosive Isabelle Huppert, who is in peak form in this film.


 Savage Grace (2007)

‘Savage Grace,’ based on the famed Barbara Daly Baekeland murder case, is a frightening picture of an incestuous relationship between a mother and her son. Barbara, played by Julianne Moore, must deal with her son’s mental issues and confusing sexuality. She seduces her son in order to “stabilize” his sexuality, which creates a terrifying environment as their lives conclude in the most terrible of ways you could ever imagine. Julianne Moore plays the character brilliantly and carries the picture throughout, raising it to something more than watchable.


 Spanking the Monkey (1994)

‘Spanking the Monkey,’ a grim comedy at first, is the literal slang for masturbation. Raymond want to pursue an important medical internship but is obliged to return home because his mother has a leg ailment and his father is on a work-related tour. As Raymond’s mental state deteriorates, the two begin to form an unusual friendship that eventually becomes incestuous. Despite its controversial and provocative topic, director David O. Russell loads the picture with warm comedy and energy, making it a very refreshing viewing. Or how heinous. On this list, ‘Spanking the Monkey’ has to be the most critically successful incest film, receiving more than 90 percent approbation from critics and grossing more than five times its budget at the box office.


 Delta (2008)

This Hungarian treasure is a shamefully underappreciated drama about an estranged brother and sister’s heartbreaking incestuous relationship. The picture has a dark tone that represents the odd relationship between its protagonists, but it does not take advantage of the story’s provocative aspect. There is a sense of looming danger throughout the film, but the way it shows its characters and their relationship makes us empathise with them rather than trying to turn us off with apparent emotional manipulation. In terms of plot, ‘Delta’ is the story of a young man who has returned home to see his family – a sister and his mother, the latter of whom had been staying with her boyfriend. As he prepares to build a new house for himself, his sister moves in with him, complicating matters even further.

 The Blue Lagoon (1980)

‘The Blue Lagoon,’ perhaps one of the first films to introduce incest into popular cinema, tells the story of two cousins, Richard and Emmeline, who are stranded on a lonely island in the South Pacific. Although they are first accompanied by Paddy, a cook who also survived the disaster, he dies due to excessive drinking, leaving Richard and Emmeline alone amid the great expanse of the island. As they get older and reach puberty without regard for cultural norms, they become closer, have a sexual relationship, and later Emmeline gives birth to a girl whom they name Paddy. The film was severely panned for celebrating taboos and appearing unnatural, despite the creators’ desire to portray the children in an unrestricted manner. I suppose the best judgment is the audience.


 La Luna (1979)

The troubling bond between a mother and her kid is explored in Bernardo Bertolucci’s controversial thriller. Joe, a teen, has a strained connection with his parents, and when his mother’s husband commits himself, he joins her in Rome. However, the boy’s emotional problems start to affect him, and he begins to use drugs. His mother becomes increasingly close to him in order to free him from the web of addiction, which develops into a sexual relationship. The picture as a whole doesn’t hold up well, but the incestuous section is done quite nicely.


 Beautiful Kate (2009)

‘Beautiful Kate’ is about a writer, Ned, who comes to visit his dying father and sister with his fiancee. The plot revolves around a complex web of incestuous ties. Ned’s fiance learns that he had a sexual relationship with his elder sister Kate, who died in a car accident with her older brother Cliff. Ned’s sister Sally informs him that she believes Kate had a sexual relationship with Cliff as well, and he is unable to live with the guilt of committing such a heinous sin. Despite its confusing plot, the picture is incredibly effective, thanks in part to the writing and the manner it deals with such a horrific subject.


 The Ballad of Jack and Rose (2005)

‘The Ballad of Jack and Rose’ is a gorgeously flawed film on the delicate complexities of human relationships. Daniel Day-Lewis plays Jack, a farmer with a heart problem who lives with his daughter, who is cut off from the outside world. When Jack brings his girlfriend, Kathleen, and her adolescent sons home, his daughter develops feelings of envy for Jack’s big family. When Jack discovers that his daughter had sex with Kathleen’s son, he is enraged, but he is also conflicted because she was in love with him. It’s a brilliantly crafted drama that occasionally drifts and meanders but manages to strike a chord with you due to the sheer warmth and humanity that it brings in.


 Lolita (1997)

Although the incest is primarily inferred and not direct in the film, ‘Lolita’ grabbed headlines for the hot sexual relationship that bordered on paedophilia. Humbert, a French literature professor, is visiting New Hampshire and rents a room from Charlotte, a single mother who has been living with her adolescent daughter Dolores. Humbert marries Charlotte to be closer to Dolores (or “Lo” as she is affectionately known). When Charlotte learns of Humbert’s plans, she escapes the house and is killed in a car accident, which serves as a blessing in disguise for Humbert because it allows him to publicly pursue Dolores, whom he now refers to as “Lolita.” After traveling, Lo flees with another lad, Clare Quilty, only to be abandoned by him as well. Jeremy Irons as Humbert has done extraordinarily well, yet unlike any other incest film, ‘Lolita’ was acclaimed by critics for being artistic and passionate.


 Illegitimate (2016)

‘Illegitimate’ depicts the story of several sins widespread in society, as well as the so-called “sinners” who perpetuate them. An Orthodox family led by a doctor, a guy who is proud of having averted many abortions, has a passionate fight with his children who believe otherwise. Meanwhile, his children, twins Sasha and Romeo, are involved in an incestuous, intense relationship, and Sasha soon discovers she is pregnant. Sasha subsequently discovers that she has always been an undesired kid because her father refused to agree and let her mother to abort her. After a few minutes, the complicated narrative of connections becomes entwined and wrapped within its own weight, leaving spectators engaged but devastated, because we don’t know which is the “correct” side. ‘Illegitimate’ is one of the most engrossing incest films ever filmed.


 Beau Père (1981)

‘Beau Père,’ the French name for stepfather, is the love incestuous romance of a pianist and his adolescent stepdaughter, whose mother perished in a vehicle accident. The story opens with Remi, a musician who lives with his wife Martine and step-daughter Marion, and follows a plot similar to that of ‘Lolita.’ Marion has two options following her mother’s death: stay with Remi or return to her drunkard father Charly. Despite Charly’s efforts to persuade her to stay with him, she returns to Remi, her stepfather. Marion is then attracted to Remi, whom he rejects due to their relationship. Although a taboo is involved, it is not celebrated as in previous incest movies, which gained excellent reviews for ‘Beau Père’ – a remarkable feat for an incest movie.


 The Cement Garden (1993)

‘The Cement Garden,’ a story of incest with a twist, is set among a family of four children whose parents have died. The story opens with Jack, a teenage boy who is assisting his father with chores, but the latter dies soon after, leaving Jack, his two sisters Julie and Sue, and a younger brother Tom, as well as their ailing mother. While they are aware that they will soon be orphans, Jack and Julie resolve not to notify anybody about their mother’s illness for fear of being placed in foster care. Instead of burying their mother, Jack and Julie construct a cement tomb in which she will be entombed. Jack and Julie quickly enter into an incestuous relationship, despite their concerns about the effects of their relationship on them and society, but nothing major comes of it. The performances and, notably, the direction in ‘The Cement Garden’ garnered largely excellent feedback.


 Oldboy (2003)

f you haven’t seen Park Chan-explosive wook’s thriller, I’d advise you to stop reading this section and go watch it first. ‘Oldboy’ is as viscerally thrilling and emotionally taxing as cinema gets. It follows Oh Dae Su, a guy who was imprisoned for no apparent cause and was released after 15 years. He sets out to discover the identity of his kidnapper, but things take an unusual turn as the horrific secrets of his history are revealed. Dae Su had a competitor at school named Lee Woo-jin, whom he found having a physical relationship with his own sister. He informs his peers, prompting Woo-sister jin’s to commit suicide. As a kind of retaliation, Woo-jin imprisoned him for 15 years and used his own grown-up daughter to make him fall in love with her, causing him to experience the same suffering that Woo-jin had.


 Shame (2011)

‘Shame,’ directed by Steve McQueen, is an astoundingly powerful drama that delves into the deepest recesses of the human soul. The film follows a New York City executive who is a sex addict who has sex with prostitutes on a regular basis and is severely addicted to masturbation. But when his sister comes to visit him for a few days, he is compelled to suppress his emotions. This film can be taken in a variety of ways. While many people feel there is nothing between Brendon and Sissy, I believe they share a tragic past. Their amount of physical intimacy, as well as the way they communicate with each other, create an unpleasant sense and provide tiny signs about their incestuous past. Michael Fassbender and Carey Mulligan’s superb, captivating performances were greatly praised, as was the pathology of its characters, which was sympathetic on many levels. What do you think?


 The Quiet (2005)

When a deaf and dumb teenage girl named Dot goes to live with her godparents after her parents die, she learns about their teenage daughter Nina, who is allegedly having an incestuous connection with her father Paul. Paul, on the other hand, has certain secrets to maintain and has doubts about Nina, while Nina covertly intends to murder her father, a fantasy that comes true when Paul is strangled and shoved from the building to death. Nina continues on with her life, while Olivia is jailed for murdering Paul, as opposed to Dot, who was suspected of murdering Paul. ‘The Quiet’ received surprisingly high reviews from critics, with several applauding the lead performers, particularly Elisha Cuthbert, for their superb performances and for having depths in their characterizations. Because incest was involved, there were a slew of unfavorable reviews as well, if anyone is interested.


 Murmur of the Heart (1971)

Louis Malle’s witty picture of adulthood and sexuality manages to move you with its endearing tenderness and warmth. The incestuous relationship between Laurent and Clara here does not bother or unsettle you, but there is a certain charm and genuine adoration that makes it so attractive despite how unusual and provocative their relationship is. Their connection has an eerie romantic element to it that makes it feel delightfully unique. Many current directors, including Wes Anderson and Noah Baumbach, have been influenced by the film.


 Lovers of the Arctic Circle (1998)

As children, Anna and Otto had a special bond, but things change when Anna’s mother marries Otto’s father after the death of her husband. They begin to build an incestuous relationship as they grow more drawn to each other, but life separates them and the two go their separate ways, only to meet again years later. The film treats its characters as ordinary people, without passing judgment on them, and the romance is handled in a refreshing way, with toned-down melodrama and tenderness. ‘Lovers of the Arctic Circle’ is an incredible treasure and one of the best incest films that deserves to be seen more often.


 The Dreamers (2003)

Rather of being repulsive, as many incest movies are, ‘The Dreamers’ is one of the most seductive incest movies. The film begins with Matthew, an American student visiting France to study French literature, where he meets Theo and Isabelle, twins. Matthew agrees to remain with Theo and Isabelle at their offer, only to disagree and later accede to their “liberal” ways of staying, sleeping, and showering naked together. Matthew and Isabelle start dating with Theo’s blessing, but everything remains creepily under Theo’s “watch.” ‘The Dreamers’ contains unsettling sequences of masturbation, incest, and frontal nudity, making it one of the most explicit incest films ever filmed. Later, the three joins the continuous street protests, gradually letting go of their inhibitions and attachment to one another. ‘The Dreamers,’ a film universally lauded by critics and spectators alike, was described as “sweet and lovely.”


 Dogtooth (2009)

To call this stark work of art brilliant would be an understatement. ‘Dogtooth,’ directed by Yorgos Lanthimos, depicts the story of a family who confines their children inside the family property and does not expose them to the outside world. In the film, violence is normalized, and even the most heinous acts fail to disturb you. Incest develops in an unsettlingly naturalistic manner in this case, as the parents force the child to pick between his sisters after the father dismisses the woman he used to pay to have sex with his son because she showed them Hollywood pictures. It’s nearly like a Michael Haneke film, minus the punitive element.