One of the most precious things that exists in this world is childhood innocence. Unfortunately, the film industry has a disturbing history of having children perform sexually explicit actions on film, largely for the entertainment of adults. While attracting rightful condemnation from many, there is not enough being done to protect children working in the entertainment industry from being exposed to and participating in things that children should not be a part of.
This is a particularly timely list as the mainstream media has recently begun drawing attention to QAnon when a reporter recently asked the president what he thought about “his” suggestion that Mr Trump is working to end a deeply entrenched child sex trafficking cabal in the deep state with Hollywood complicity. Additionally, Netflix recently released a show Cuties which has horrified many with its extreme pro child sexuality content.
These are 10 films featuring children performing explicit actions on screen . . . disturbingly this is just the tip of the iceberg.
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10 Good Boys 2019
Seth Rogan’s 2019 comedy film Good Boys pushed all the remaining boundaries of late night comedies. The film features 3 13 year old boys, played by real 13 year old actors, who are preparing for their first Kissing Party and have several misadventures along the way. The boys activities in the film included them cursing, peeping on their neighbors and underage drinking. In addition there were several scenes featuring the underaged actors using sex toys, both properly and improperly. One scene featured 13 year old Jacob Trembly kissing a sex doll which was implied as being used by one of his friends parents. Another featured all 3 of the boys viewing a pornographic video. In spite of all of this, there was little mainstream controversy surrounding the film and it was released to the public without incident, grossing 110.6 million at the box office.
9 Blank Check 1994
Disney movies are meant to be child friendly and family friendly films. Given that they are mostly watched by children, Disney movies are often held to a higher standard in terms of what is on screen. That is not always the case however and several Disney films have been at the center of controversy, one such is the movie Blank Check. In 1994’s Blank Check, the 11 year old Preston was seen to be in a one sided relationship with a 32 year old actress featuring dates, romantic gifts, and culminating in a kiss on the lips at the end of the movie. It created controversy at the time but was quickly forgotten and Disney was forgiven. This scene came back to haunt Disney in 2019 when the film was rereleased on Disney’s new streaming service Disney Plus. Many people were shocked and appalled that Disney chose to keep the scene in the movie, however the protests fell on deaf ears and the scene remains on Disney Plus.
8 Interview with a Vampire 1994
Much like Blank Check, Interview with a Vampire features a kiss between an underage actor and an adult actor. The main difference is between the genders of the actors, with the female Kristin Dunst kissing the male Brad Pitt. There was a 19 year age difference between Pitt and Durst at the time. Since the film’s release, both Pitt and Durnst have spoken about the scene saying how they both felt disgusted by what they had to do and regret their roles. Although Durnst feels uncomfortable with the kiss she shared with Pitt, she still speaks highly of Brad Pitt and his behavior on set, saying that he was like an older brother to her.
7 The Godfather 1972
Francais Ford Coppola’s 1972 film The Godfather is considered by many to be one of the greatest films of all time. The film tells the story of World War Two veteran Micheal Corleone, the son of feared Mafia Don Vito Corleone, reluctantly taking over his father’s criminal empire during a time of conflict within New York’s organised crime families. In addition to controversy from Italian Civil Rights groups and real organized crime organizations in regards to the depictions of Italian Americans, one particular scene crossed the line. In the film, when Micheal is forced to flee to Italy after killing a rival monster as well as a New York City police captain, he meets a young Italian woman named Apollina, who he soon marries. In the scene where Micheal and Apollonia consummate their marriage, the then 16 year old Simonetta Stefanelli removed her top showing her bare chest and began a sexually suggestive scene with the then 30 year old Al Pacino. Despite this, The Godfather’s legacy as a cinematic masterpiece remains.
6 Pretty Baby 1978
A movie telling the story of an underage prostitute featuring an underage actress will always create controversy, with outrage likely following quickly. As a result such movies are rarely made, especially ones featuring real underage actresses. But in 1978 a movie like that was released, starring 12 year old Brooke Shields. There were countless controversial scenes in the film, such as 12 year old Shields completely naked, Shields virginity being auctioned off and Shields being drugged and sexually abused. These scenes led to the film being banned in the Canadian provinces of Ontario and Saskatchawan, in a ban that lasted until 1995. Now, the film is considered a classic by some, but a sick use of cinema by others. Shields, who was the focal point of this controversy says that she regrets nothing and is proud of the film.
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5 Taxi Driver 1976
Jodie Foster’s role in Taxi Driver has always been marked with criticism. Given her young age at the time, coupled with the fact she had to flirt with 33 year old Robert DeNiro and witness the film’s violent climax when 3 men are gunned down in a bloody gun battle. These scenes were so gruesome that Foster had to undergo several psychological evaluations in order to perform in these scenes, further stoking controversy. Finally, 4 years after the release of the film a man named John Hinckley shot President Ronald Reagan in order to get Foster’s attention. Today, Taxi Driver is known for being the film that put director Martin Scorsese on the map, as well as being one of Robert DeNiro’s most memorable roles.
4 Lolita 1997
Based on the controversial 1955 book, Lolita is a movie detailing the illicit relationship between a 12 year old girl and her middle aged stepfather. Unlike the original 1962 movie which had a more lighthearted and comedic tone to it, the 1997 remake of the film did not shy away from the more controversial themes of the original novel. In the film, Lolita was played by 17 year old Dominique Swain while Humbert Humbert was played by 49 year old Jeremy Irons, who later stoked controversy for saying that parental affection had a sexual aspect. In the film, Irons and Swain engaged in all of the hallmarks of a traditional relationship such as hugging, kissing, as well as illusions of sexual contact between the pair.
3 Cuties 2020
The description of this movie says it all. “Amy, 11 years old, tries to escape family dysfunction by joining a free-spirited dance clique named Cuties, as they become aware of their own femininity through dance.” This, combined with images of scantily clad young girls sparked a fierce social media backlash with many demanding Netflix remove the film with some even going so far as to cancel their Netflix accounts altogether. Netflix further stoked controversy when their executives refused to condemn pedophelia and insisted that the controversy surrounding the film was wrong. Nonetheless, Netflix eventually bowed to public pressure and removed the posters featuring scantily clad young girls and changed the film’s description. That however does not change the fact that the film contains scenes of scantily clad 11 year old girls performing sexually provocative dances and is set to release to the public very soon.
2 Manhattan 1979
Noted Hollywood figure Woody Allen’s personal life has been the source of controversy over the course of many years. The source of this controversy stems from his relationship with his step-daughter Soon Yi, whom he had raised since she was 11 years old. It has been alleged that the relationship started before Soon Yi was 18, but that has never been proven. Given this controversy, his 1979 film Manhattan has been analysed under a new light. This film, which tells the story of a 42 year old writer, played by Allen, dating a 17 year old high school student, played by 17 year old Mariel Hemingway. Given the disturbing nature of Allen’s later relationship, many have said that the film represents a pedophelic fantasy of Allen’s, as opposed to the work of cinematic art it was once hailed as. Nonetheless, the film still details an inappropriate adult/child relationship in a normalised context.
1 Kids 1995
The 1995 film Kids centers around several teenagers in New York City in the mid 1990s. At the time of the film’s release it was rated NC-17 due to scenes of underage drug abuse, underage nudity, and a plotline centering around an HIV positive rapist who went around infecting young virgins. It also attracted anger from the general public for these themes and sparked a heated debate about artistic expression. Despite this, it was released unedited. A film so controversial could only be made by one man. The infamous former Hollywood producer and convicted rapist Harvey Weinstein, who is now serving a 23 year sentence for his crimes. Although most of the main cast members were over the age of 18 at the time of filming, several such as Leo Fitzpatrick and Rosario Dawson were still underage at the time of filming, and performed explicit actions as such.
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About the author: After using many pseudonyms to write twelve lists for Listverse, I have now decided to publish under my own name.