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Almost real: Watch these sex scenes that feel like the real thing

Whether we like it or not, a well-executed sex scene in a film can really stick with you. Let’s face it, we can all recall a sex scene that triggered some sort of physical emotion, and even if you tried your hardest to fight it internally, you’ll always see the movie in a new light. 

Whether the on-screen sex scene made you laugh hysterically at the moans & groans of Will Forte’s MacGruber, for example, or wince in pain at the sight of Jodi Foster being sexually assaulted in The Accused, sex scenes can oftentimes stay on your mind long after you’ve left the theatre and gone to bed. 

Luckily, many movie sex scenes are not intended to disturb or humor the audience with its execution, but rather help viewers build a connection to the on-screen romance portrayed. Sometimes a sex scene is there to serve the moment.  

We’re discussing a few sex scenes that spilled their scented oils from the screen and made the audience believe it was indeed the real thing – the cameras were only accidentally rolling. 

Don Jon

2013’s Don Jon tells the story of, you guessed it, Jon (Joseph Gordon-Levitt), a modern-day bartender living in New Jersey, self-absorbed with shallow things such as his good looks, his car, and most importantly, his sex life.

Whether it be his intense habits of self-pleasuring or his weekend need for random hookups, Jon finds his perfect match in Barbara (Scarlett Johansson), a female cut-and-paste version of Jon, who’s just as into her hair & makeup as Jon is his abs & Swiffer wipes. 

While attending a night class at a local community college, Jon meets Esther (Julianne Moore), an older woman who finds Jon attractive from the very first lecture. While their tension builds throughout the film, they finally share a couple of hot-and-steamy sex scenes that revert Jon back into a shy boy rather than his typical persona in need of GTL (is GTL still a thing?). 

Esther essentially sets Jon’s world aflame which forces him to rise from the ashes and take a look at himself, most likely through his apartment mirror that’s been cleaned to avoid streaks. It resets Jon both as a character & man, which is sexy in and of itself.


Brokeback Mountain  

Yep . . . we’re going there again. While it’s almost certain that there’s nothing new to be said about the 2005 Ang Lee drama, Brokeback Mountain, it’s important to remember why we still celebrate this film even today. 

Ahead of its time, Brokeback Mountain tells a love story between two male cowboys who share some steamy sex scenes – gay content we’re only now starting to see prominently today.

Hiding their secret relationship, Jack Twist (Jake Gyllenhaal) and Ennis Del Mar (the late Heath Ledger) are mountain men who struggle to decide on what’s more important, their love or the complications that will come from it over the years. 

The first sex scene between the men happens in a tent on a cold night up on the mountain. During the hot roll in the sack, we felt every emotion the two characters were feeling, thanks to Lee’s amazing direction and the commitment from both actors. 

We feel the cold air as Ennis freezes outside, waiting to be invited into Jack’s tent. We want Ennis to get warm in a late-night snuggle. Lastly, we feel their love as the film’s score dies down in order to give both the characters and the audience a raw moment, making their sex scene one to remember.


“It started with a chair . . .” 2007’s Juno punches audiences in the face with its awkward yet relatable opening, as lead characters Juno (Elliot Page) and Paulie (Michael Cera) decide to “do the dirty” on what looks like a grandfather’s armchair, covered in stained cloth & coffee spills. The adolescent sex scene took many viewers back to when they lost their virginity, a time where the memories are as clear as they are uncomfortable. 

The one Juno sex scene, albeit swift in its execution, gets to the point. It’s a reminder of innocence surrendered for the sake of curiosity, a curiosity of the mind & spirit that tells us “we’re ready” for that next giant step in maturity.

Juno takes us back to our first time, reminding us that sex oftentimes never lives up to what the movies portray it as. Juno earns its great reputation by showcasing relatable characters in relatable situations.   

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