As a lifetime lover of lists, a decade-long employee of The Black List and an expert on sexy movies, it is my privilege and honor to bring you Letterboxd’s first-ever Naughty List, highlighting 2023’s very best cinematic sex (and related themes).
While several worthy new films out this year have contributed towards a canon of interesting, and important, sex scenes (a great Letterboxd list curated by Justin LaLiberty), the volume is nowhere near what you’d imagine from the sex scene discourse wars, which have continued onward into their 699th month, with no signs of a resolution anytime soon.
Insofar as IMDb’s contributor-provided tags can be relied upon as a statistic, 55 out of a total 18,027 features released in 2023 are tagged as including a sex scene. That’s a mere 0.3 percent of all released films this year, and even if that number is point-zero of a degree off, it’s still an absolutely devastating statistic you can now use when your Republican uncle starts complaining about there being “too much sex in movies” at the holiday dinner table!
While it does remain quite challenging out there for home-video voyeurs and picture-show perverts like me (and Letterboxd member Serial Chat Killer), I do feel there were a few exciting signs of (sex) life at the movies this year. So I’ve picked five of the best, from horny thrillers and comedies to (content warning) one deeply important examination of virginity and consent.
First, a few honorable mentions.