These Movies Are Way Kinkier Than Fifty Shades Freed

When Fifty Shades of Grey was published in 2011, you couldn't go more than a few feet without seeing someone reading it (or reading it behind another book, like I did). The book tapped into some collective curiosity many people had, but perhaps didn't express. Since then, all three Fifty Shades books have been adapted for the big screen. Ostensibly, the sex scenes between Christian Grey (Jamie Dornan) and Anastasia Steele (Dakota Johnson) are supposed to be quite titillating, but are often anything but. "The sex scenes are so boring that I would have used one for a bathroom break," wrote Scott Mendelson in his Fifty Shades Freed review for Forbes.
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If you were planning on using Fifty Shades Freed as a way to get in the mood for Valentine's Day, you might want to consider watching one of these movies instead. As in Fifty Shades Freed, the characters experiment with BDSM. But these movies are seriously sexy.
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Belle de Jour (1967)

In her conventional marriage, Séverine Serizy (Catherine Deneuve) can't get what she wants. And what she wants is sexual exploration. After being put in contact with the madam of a high-class brothel, Séverine begins to live a double life. During the day, when her husband is gone, she works as a sex worker and gets to actually enact her fantasies of bondage and domination.
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The Story of O (1975)

The entire plot of this movie revolves around the exploration of BDSM and fetishes. A woman, known only as O (Corinne Clery), is whisked away by her lover to a manor in the French countryside, where other people in his society are waiting to join in on the fun. O is trained in the arts of bondage and S&M.
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Maitresse (1975)

Sense a theme? Some of the earliest and most daring movies that explored BDSM were made in France. Olivier (Gérard Depardieu) arrives at Ariane's (Ogier) house with the intention of robbing her landlord. Instead of finding riches to steal, he finds Ariane's torture room, where she indulges in her dominatrix side. Olivier and Ariane become involved with each other, but she continues to meet her customers downstairs, leading to tension.
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9 1/2 Weeks (1986)

Has there ever been a more iconic movie about sexual obsession? In 1980s New York, a Wall Street trader, John, (Mickey Rourke), and an art gallerist, Elizabeth (Kim Basinger) have an immediate connection after meeting. On the surface, the pairing of a trader and art gallerist might sound like something right out of Sex and the City — but things quickly get far racier in 9 1/2 Weeks than they would in SATC. John controls Elizabeth by having her masturbate at work at designated times during the day, or using food as foreplay. As John's sexual proclivities become more extreme, Elizabeth has to decide where her boundaries are.
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Tie Me Up! Tie Me Down! (1989)

When Ricky (Antonio Banderas) is released from a mental institution, he knows exactly where he's going: The house of the woman he believes is his true love, actress Marina Osorio (Victoria Abril). They had slept together once prior, but it was casual — for her, at least. Ricky captures Marina and ties her up with the belief that eventually, she'll fall in love with him. Tie Me Up! Tie Me Down! plays with the themes of bondage and control that other movies on this list do, but in a novel way.
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Tokyo Decadence (1992)

Tokyo Decadence isn't shy with its intentions: The movie begins with four extended sex scenes, before finally delving into the plot (though there's not much of a plot at all). Ai (Miho Nikaido) is a sex worker who specializes in S&M, and caters to all manner of unusual sexual fantasies. She spends her days in anonymous high-rise hotel rooms, pining after a former client. Her counterpart is Saki (Sayako Amano), a dominatrix who has become very wealthy but turns to drugs as a fantasy from her life. Tokyo Decadence is more a series of linked scenes that explore decadence in Tokyo than it is a cohesive movie.
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Basic Instinct (1992)

Nick Curran (Michael Douglas) is a private investigator who should know better than to get involved with the woman he's investigating. Catharine Trammel (Sharon Stone) is, as they say, a smooth criminal. In no time, she's seduced Nick, who has conveniently forgotten the fact that Catharine is the number-one suspect in a murder by icepick. The sex scenes in Basic Instinct feature BDSM elements, like when Nick is tied up to the bed.
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The Piano Teacher (2001)

Erika Kohut (Isabelle Huppert) has absolutely no outlet for her fantasies. She's 40 years old, and living with her controlling mother. There is no room for men in the small, claustrophobic life she has with her mother — until she meets Walter (Benoît Magimel), a younger man, at a piano recital. They begin a passionate affair that revolves around satisfying Erika's masochistic fantasies. Warning: The violence gets pretty graphic and uncomfortable.
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Secretary (2002)

That iconic image of Maggie Gyllenhaal crawling on her hands and knees with a letter in her mouth? It's from Secretary, a mainstream movie responsible for somewhat normalizing — or at least introducing — the American public to BDSM. Gyllenhaal plays Lee Holloway, a timid, lonely woman reentering the work force with a secretary job. Her new boss, E. Edward Grey (James Spader), is far more domineering than the other Grey (Christian) — and she kind of loves it. They revel in each other, leading to a full-on BDSM romance.
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Mr. and Mrs. Smith (2005)

Mr. and Ms. Smith is remembered for Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt's attempts to assassinate each other, despite being a married couple in the movie, and for being the movie in which Jolie and Pitt met. Lest you forget, though, Jolie is a dominatrix in one of the movie's scenes.
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A Dangerous Method (2011)

BDSM, but with an illicit psychologist-patient relationship, 19th century gowns, and a moment at the forefront of the study of sex. A Dangerous Method is one very, very sexy period piece. Sabina Spielrein (Keira Knightley) is a patient of Dr. Carl Jung's (Michael Fassbender). She has the curious tendency of associating pain with pleasure. Jung's close personal friend, Sigmund Freud (Viggo Mortensen), encourages Jung to take a hands-on approach to this exploration. They start an affair that features all the elements Sabina craves: Bondage, spanking, and punishment.
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