Eroguro nonsense
April 29, 2012 7:14 AM   Subscribe

Recommend me smart films that celebrate abnormal romance.

My girlfriend and I are weird people and want some happy romantic films to put us in the mood. We both enjoy psychological stuff, and both of us have slight tendencies towards BDSM and eroguro; a film where two people fit their abnormalities together would be great, although other kinds of film would also work. This is way too much information, so I'll give some examples of films in the right category.

Amelie would be perfect, but she's seen it many times already. The girl seems to match some aspects of my girlfriend's personality.

L'Histoire d'O will probably work, but it depends on our mood. It's a pretty damn erotic film.

MIND GAME could work. (This is a Japanese existentialist film where an introvert falls into a whale with his lifelong crush, and they make love inside the whale. There's also a lot of flashbacks and time travel.)

Secretary matches the general idea, although I thought it was a kind of simplistic and unintelligent tale.

Let The Right One In is not exactly upbeat, and could leave us cold for most of the time, but we will both enjoy the eroguro.

Kill Bill is not a romance film at all but could possibly work depending on our mood, due to the eroguro factor.

I have never seen The Phantom of the Opera -- does it fit?

"Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind" is not the sort of thing I have in mind. I don't want to rant in a question space but it seems utterly mundane to me-- I mean, I'd rather watch "Love Actually", which at least has a really philosophical sense to it.
posted by shii to Media & Arts (57 answers total) 41 users marked this as a favorite
Response by poster: Woah, I seem to have posed this question in a slightly grumpy-sounding way. Totally not my intention. Please, post whatever you think is a good idea! I'm not going to criticize anyone who offers suggestions!
posted by shii at 7:17 AM on April 29, 2012

Harold and Maude.
posted by Ideefixe at 7:20 AM on April 29, 2012 [15 favorites]

Eagle vs Shark
posted by Argyle at 7:25 AM on April 29, 2012 [2 favorites]


Girl with a Pearl Earring

posted by vers at 7:25 AM on April 29, 2012 [1 favorite]

Love Me If You Dare
posted by constellations at 7:32 AM on April 29, 2012 [2 favorites]

Having just read the Wikipedia article on ero guro, I'll say In the Realm of the Senses. It's based on the notorious Sada Abe, who strangled and then mutilated her lover.
posted by hydrophonic at 7:33 AM on April 29, 2012 [2 favorites]

I came in here to suggest Harold and Maude, and also Benny & Joon.
posted by Johnny Assay at 7:33 AM on April 29, 2012 [2 favorites]

Any Hulk movie
posted by tarvuz at 7:37 AM on April 29, 2012

The Girl on the Bridge - La Fille sur le Pont (aging knife-thrower meets the girl of his dreams - don't read the plot summary on IMDB or wikipedia, they give away too much)
posted by agentmitten at 7:38 AM on April 29, 2012 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: These are fantastic!!
posted by shii at 7:51 AM on April 29, 2012

Punch Drunk Love.
posted by Sticherbeast at 7:53 AM on April 29, 2012 [6 favorites]

The Fly? Or more Amelie-ish, the new Audrey Tatou movie where she falls in love with her not-as-attractive coworker? (Those two movies couldn't be more different so maybe I don't understand 'ero-guro' fully).
posted by bquarters at 7:54 AM on April 29, 2012 [1 favorite]

Benny and Joon
posted by Happydaz at 7:59 AM on April 29, 2012

Mad Dog and Glory?
posted by Scottie_Bob at 8:00 AM on April 29, 2012

I'm pretty sure you will love the fantastic Alejandro Jodorwski's Sante Sangre. Two circus children, a magician and a deaf/mute dancer, fall in love....oh, also, there's murder, rape, knife-throwing, cults, fire, and the hacking off of limbs.
posted by Juliet Banana at 8:03 AM on April 29, 2012 [4 favorites]

Not a happy movie, but The Pillow Book might meet your needs.
posted by elizeh at 8:05 AM on April 29, 2012 [1 favorite]

Lars and the Real Girl
posted by Hobo at 8:05 AM on April 29, 2012 [5 favorites]

Boxing Helena

A surgeon becomes obsessed with the seductive woman he once had an affair with. Refusing to accept that she has moved on, he amputates her limbs and holds her captive in his mansion.
posted by caryatid at 8:06 AM on April 29, 2012 [1 favorite]

Paper Heart

Sex, Lies and Videotape

Punch Drunk Love (Don't be scared off by Adam Sandler)

Three Colors: White

The Unbearable Lightness of Being


Garden State

Closer (Maybe not happy, but interesting)

Breaking the Waves (Not easy to watch or totally happy, but...interesting)
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 8:11 AM on April 29, 2012 [2 favorites]

How about Harold and Maude?
posted by Chocolate Pickle at 8:17 AM on April 29, 2012


After getting into a serious car accident, a TV director discovers an underground sub-culture of scarred, omnisexual car-crash victims who use car accidents and the raw sexual energy they produce to try to rejuvenate his sex life with his wife.
posted by caryatid at 8:20 AM on April 29, 2012

Another vote for Harold and Maude

Crossing Delancey

Desperately Seeking Susan

Out of Sight
posted by Mchelly at 8:23 AM on April 29, 2012

Breaking the Waves is one of my favorite movies ever. Totally seconding that.

Also, what about the Korean movie 'Time' which involves disappearing, getting plastic surgery and then returning as a new person who seeks out her previous love, then becomes jealous of both the boyfriend's sad, nostalgic love for her previous self as well as jealousy from her previous self's perspective as her boyfriend falls in love with her new self. Ah, Korean movies, so...mind boggling.
posted by bquarters at 8:26 AM on April 29, 2012

How about the films of Pedro Almodóvar? I haven't seen this one, but Tie Me Up! Tie Me Down! might be something you'd like.
posted by hydrophonic at 8:26 AM on April 29, 2012

Perhaps the movie "Kissed" - it's a Canadian movie about a female necrophiliac that manages to be erotically atmospheric.
posted by Neely O'Hara at 8:28 AM on April 29, 2012 [1 favorite]

I came in to suggest Harold and Maude, but by the looks of, it seems to be the movie foremost in peoples minds regarding unconventional romance.
Then I remembered True Romance, which has an unconventional romance in a way, and is a very entertaining movie.
It's on this list at IMDB, entitled "Unconventional Romances", some of which are not what you're looking for at all but may be some winners there.
posted by newpotato at 8:30 AM on April 29, 2012

Two's a Crowd, a short documentary about a New York couple moving in together, 5 years after they were married.
posted by angels in the architecture at 8:32 AM on April 29, 2012

Crash is perfect for this. Also Tetsuo the Iron Man is not romance per se or upbeat but about a woman who is married to a guy who is becoming ... some sort of robot monster. Some totally gross sex/rape. When I looked up eroguro it's what came to mind. You'd probably really like the Polish brothers' movie Twin Falls Idaho about a pair of Siamese twins. Other good ones include Dead Ringers (more twin weirdness, this one with gynecologists and their bizarre girlfriend swapping) and Videodrome. Those are all more on the creepy side of the spectrum than the romance side but all have a relationship/romance as a central plot point.

For more traditional "romance with quirky people" movies I'd suggest Niagara, Niagara (loner and a woman with Tourettes), Greenberg (Ben Stiller in an indie movie as a loner guy with problems sort of gets a weird thing going with his brother's assistant) and Wristcutters, A love Story which is probably the best of the lot.
posted by jessamyn at 8:38 AM on April 29, 2012 [1 favorite]

Some great suggestions here that covered most of my thoughts. However, I'll add White Palace: A young, rich exec falls for an older working class woman. Despite the strong chemistry between them, there is much negotiating the age & class differences.
posted by smirkette at 8:49 AM on April 29, 2012 [2 favorites]

You might appreciate the movie Good Dick. Slow-moving, but quirky for sure.
posted by trampoliningisfun at 8:58 AM on April 29, 2012

Minnie and Moskowitz
posted by rhizome at 9:27 AM on April 29, 2012 [1 favorite]

My Left Foot
posted by Multicellular Exothermic at 9:32 AM on April 29, 2012

I would nth Harold and Maude, Lars and the Real Girl, and Good Dick.

To all this I would add Sidewalls--it explores the same kind of yearning/pining wonder that Amelie does and tells its weird story via narration and characterization in the same kind of way. It's about soul mates who live across the street from each other but for whom contemporary life makes meeting nearly impossible. There are mannequins, phobias, and beautiful architecture metaphors. Absolutely a film about two people too weird for anyone else but the other.
posted by rumposinc at 10:03 AM on April 29, 2012 [2 favorites]

Griff the Invisible
posted by LionIndex at 10:05 AM on April 29, 2012

A couple of Almodovar films come to mind, Matador and The Skin I Live In.
posted by cazoo at 11:24 AM on April 29, 2012

The Woman in the Dunes is very powerful.

Some potentially useful TV Tropes lists: Mayfly-December Romance, Opposites Attract.
posted by painquale at 1:13 PM on April 29, 2012

A Zed and Two Noughts.
posted by hot soup girl at 1:19 PM on April 29, 2012

Leaving Las Vegas.
posted by hot soup girl at 1:36 PM on April 29, 2012

posted by hot soup girl at 1:54 PM on April 29, 2012 [1 favorite]


There's some other good ones in the People Who Liked This Also Liked... section.
posted by book 'em dano at 2:12 PM on April 29, 2012

Max mon amour. And you might want to check out films by Catherine Breillat.
posted by progosk at 2:30 PM on April 29, 2012

Seconding 'The Names of Love'.

Also, you should check out 'Head-On' (Gegen Die Wand). Its a German film from some years back, and it tells a very intense and unconventional love story. That is one of my favorites.
Along those lines, check out anything else by the director, Fatih Akin. He's got a light touch.
posted by Alonzo T. Calm at 3:02 PM on April 29, 2012

It might be too straightforward, I don't know, but Before Sunrise kinda, in that it doesn't end in a Hollywood way.

Hiroshima Mon Amour?

Leaving Las Vegas (warning: includes an awful, scarring rape scene and does not end happy at all; I haven't seen it in years but it disturbed the hell out of me when I did)

Nthing In the Realm of the Senses (one of my favorites).

And also maybe too out there/stretching it, but Heavenly Creatures?

It's Hollywood cheese, but since you mentioned Kill Bill perhaps Mr. and Mrs. Smith?
posted by ifjuly at 3:27 PM on April 29, 2012 [1 favorite]

Oh, and I am Love is kind of straightforward in terms of plot, but the movie's so over the top stylish and artsty fartsy it sort of makes it seem unusual. I think it'd be good for setting a mood.
posted by ifjuly at 3:30 PM on April 29, 2012 [1 favorite]

Fur - a super strange but lovely movie about a (fictional) love affair between Diane Arbus and her neighbour who has hypertrichosis. It's directed by Steven Shainberg, who also directed Secretary.
posted by fight or flight at 3:51 PM on April 29, 2012

The first three of these movies are happy but strange romances between characters that are very different from each other. The last two end badly but will appeal to your interest in eroguro films.

The Princess and the Warrior
A German film about a romance between a veteran soldier and a nurse who works at a psychiatric institute. Love begins to blossom after the veteran gives the nurse an emergency tracheotomy.

I'm a Cyborg, But That's OK
A Korean film about love set IN a psychiatric institute. A woman named Young-goon is committed for believing she's a cyborg and for injuring herself, but she refuses to eat and begins to waste away. A young man who believes he can steal people's traits tries his best to save her.

Negative Happy Chainsaw Edge
A Japanese film about an underachieving young man who falls in love with a mysterious girl who secretly fights a chainsaw wielding monster each night.

I'm surprised no one has mentioned this one. It's a romance/horror movie by Takashi Miike. Enough said. It has an infamous torture scene near the ending.

How Tasty Was My Little Frenchman
A Brazilian film set in 1594 about a shipwrecked French sailor who is captured by a local tribe and married off to one of their women with the promise that someday they will eat him.
posted by CheshireCat at 6:27 PM on April 29, 2012

Response by poster: I just realized that I forgot about Love Exposure. Surprised no one has mentioned it yet!
posted by shii at 12:46 AM on April 30, 2012

About A Boy

I don't think Audition celebrates quirky romance, unless your definition of quirky is amputating limbs and feeding vomit to exes.
posted by benzenedream at 1:31 AM on April 30, 2012

I'm not sure how About A Boy fits in here - the book has a weird romance with the young boy and a female friend, but the film leaves a lot of this out.

A film I've really liked since my teens is Lovers of the Arctic Circle - step-siblings brought together through a series of co-incidences and palindromes. If you liked Amelie, you should likle this.

Ghost World has a teenage girl having a strange near-platonic relationship with an older man. Also, a bit left-field, but perhaps the X-Men films? Rogue, for example, can't get physically close to people in case she drains their life force.
posted by mippy at 5:46 AM on April 30, 2012 [1 favorite]

Natural Born Killers. Also, I don't know if this quite fits--it's a spin-off TV series, but it watches as a movie--This Is England 86/88. The movie is also excellent, but focuses less on Woody and Lol's relationship than the series does.
posted by dysh at 7:49 AM on April 30, 2012 [1 favorite]

Bitter Moon
posted by Atom12 at 8:49 AM on April 30, 2012

A Snake of June - Maybe too much of a downer, though

A series clled "Kimi Wa Pet" - much more light-hearted but might be "unintelligent" by your exacting standards
posted by RobotHero at 7:55 PM on April 30, 2012 [1 favorite]

Last Tango in Paris? It's certainly not a romantic comedy, but it does feature some intriguing sex scenes (including a scene famous for its use of household butter...).
posted by WalkingAround at 7:33 AM on May 1, 2012 [1 favorite]

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