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My favorite Incest Films

I just finished watching Old Boy, which has now become my favorite incest themed film of all time.


In this sordid tale, a man is mysteriously kidnapped and imprisoned for 15 years. Upon being released, he hunts down his captors and tries to figure out the exact reason for why he was targeted in the first place.  In the process, he ends up being hypnotized and (without realizing it) winds up in a sexual relationship with his estranged daughter, whom he hasn’t seen since she was a toddler. The ramifications of this ends in several awesome scenes such as him cutting his own tongue out.

This movie was by far the most disturbing, well shot, captivating thriller I have seen in some time.

Disclaimer: I certainly don’t advocate incest or abuse of any sort. But it’s not my fault that many well made films have incest themes so, as a special treat to creep out my family/friends/you, here are my top ten favorite incest films so far:

Old Boy

The Cement Garden - These kids lose both their parents in a really short period of time. They bury their mother in the basement, covering her with cement. Living with this secret drives the older brother and sister mad, and they end up doing each other. The youngest brother starts dressing like a girl as well. This film was written/directed by Andrew Birkin, clearly a sick man, who also wrote the screenplay for that freaky movie Perfume: A Story of Murder, that I blogged about recently.

 Sister, My Sister - Two maids, who are also sisters, go crazy and kill their employers… but not before they manage to have a twisted sexual relationship.

Sitcom – This french film is a crack attack. The mom sleeps with her gay son to try to turn him straight, and the father turns into a giant rat and kills his family.

Flowers in the Attic – Based on the awesomely bad novel by the awesomely bad writer VC Andrews, a brother and sister are locked in an attic so their evil mother can have a relationship with some rich guy. The siblings are so lonely and warped that they start doing each other.

The Piano Teacher – This movie was so deranged that halfway into it I started having a panic attack.

Antonia’s Line – The theme of this movie isn’t technically incest, however I love this movie to death and in it there is a subplot of a young man who is raping his mentally retarded sister. Something bad happens to him in the end, and I applauded enthusiastically.

Bleeders – Incest/B Movie Horror! The perfect combo. I love stories where the incest has degraded humanity to the point where these interloped freaks are living underground and stealing corpses to feed on.

The House of Yes – Parker Posey! Having sex with her on screen brother! WoOt! I actually shut this movie off halfway into it the first time I saw it. But, it eventually grew on me.

The Hotel New Hampshire

(which I have not seen, but have heard is quite good. And I love Jodie Foster.)


The Celebration – The only Dogme 95 incest themed film that I know of. I love this story and aspire to make a film as powerful as this someday.

Girl, Interrupted

Chinatown (hello)

 And for book worms in search for good incest themed books, I love:

House of the Spirits

One Hundred Years of Solitude


  • swanstep

    _Angels and Insects_ (based on Byatt’s novella Morpho Eugenia) should have made your list….. plus, maybe polanski’s easlier _Repulsion_ , and most shockingly and horrifyingly (I was traumatized for days), Tim Roth’s _War Zone_ (There’s a spoiler problem with all these, except for War Zone which has its own secrets. You ideally shouldn’t know the incest theme before viewing. Scarecrow Video in Seattle has a “Dysfunctional Family” Section not an “Incesterific” section for this reason I suspect.)

  • livepaola

    Also in books: “The Cider House Rules” by John Irving. Much, much better than the Lasse Hallstrom movie, which cuts away about three fourths of the book.

  • shadowyjuan

    Here are a few of my own personal faves, some quite rare.
    “Against the Wind” with Antonio Banderas(Very sexy and a little sad)
    “Close my Eyes” with Clive Owen(Insatiable brother and sister!)
    “This world, then the fireworks” with Billy Zane and Gina Gershon(Smoldering! Not enough scenes together!)
    “La Luna”-Bernardo Bertolucci(Mother/son wickedness)
    “Punch”-Not a good film about a daughter obsessed with her father, but made far more interesting by the fact that the writer/director and the film’s star are actually father and daughter. Hmmm??? Just wondering.
    “The Dreamers”-More Bertolucci…Love it, love it…but disappointingly chaste with the obviously incestuous nature of the siblings.
    “Wicked” with Julia Stiles as an underage seductress who stops at nothing to win her father’s affection…and I mean nothing! Well made.
    “Eve’s Bayou”- One of my favorite movies of all time…period! Full of mirth, mysticism, and mystery…and the faint smell of incest emanating throughout.
    And lastly, what may be the most controversial of all time(never seen it yet, but looking)”Charlotte Forever”, starring Serge Gainsbourg and his then 14(?)year-old daughter Charlotte(who also starred in my favorite incest film, “The Cement Garden”)! Art imitating life??? She sure seems to be really good at these particular roles…or maybe its just because she’s French!
    I left off a couple of more controversial ones…maybe next time.

  • John

    Yes i too like whole the INCEST stories but unfaithfully i didn’t watch any incest movies because it is not avialble in my country INDIA if any one help me to get some INCEST movies kindly reply to my email i shall pay for
    those movies write to me

  • Meg

    “Red Cockroaches” – and how! Superb, disturbing and satisfying “Strange Circus”. “Illusions” with Heather Locklear for some reason. In manga/cartoons/anime “Boku wa imouto”, “Koi Kaze”, “Angel Sanctuary” (all good). “Catpeople”. The crappy “Killing Me Softly”. I personally HATED “Hotel New Hampshire” but I LOVED “Old Boy”.

  • BC

    Nice list. I love Old Boy. But to it I’d add the original ‘The Manchurian Candidate’ and ‘Angel Heart’. Oh, and ‘Star Wars’. If Vader is Luke’s father and Luke has been making out with Lea?… Hmmm.

  • Aileen

    Flowers in the attic the brother and sister dont do each other they sleep in the same bed and twisted grandmama thinks they do. Their mother had sex with the uncle to produce the four kids, and married him. Get it right. I have seen that movie so many times!

    That is the whole reason they are locked in the attic the grandmother is ashamed of the offspring they produced!

  • Gerrard Shaw

    I am a PhD candidate at Murdoch University. I have so far been unsuccessful in locating the source of a citation used at the end of a film (name unknown) by Bother Strauss: No form of failure, whether it is illness, bankruptcy or professional misfortune, will reverberate so grimly in the subconscious as divorce.
    It touches directly at the source of all anguish – awakening it.
    With one stab it penetrates so deeply as life can ever reach – Bother Strauss
    I am wondering if you can assist me. Thanking you in anticipation, Gerrard Shaw

  • Richard Baskerville 111

    A few others:

    My Mother, My lover (Dennis Waterman & Romy Schneider)

    Butterfly (Pia Zadora & Stacy Keach. Turns out, in the end, that it wasn’t incest when it it;s proved that Keach wasn’t real father to Zadora. Still, they believed they were father/daughter when they were doing it)

    La Luna

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