Originally posted by Shallow Blue
I take it mentioning the eponymous scene in Deep Throat would not do my forum cred any good?
Look, I'm saying that it's memorable, not that it's good. 'Cause it isn't. But memorable? Definitely.
If we want to elevate this thread to a higher plane, I suggest Dr. Strangelove. It is full of sex scenes. Here is why, in one person's opinion:
The film even goes as far as to implicitly suggest that the Cold War can be summed up as nothing more than a case of inter-continental penis envy. The lampooning of the sexually-obsessed-yet-deficient male-psyche remains present throughout the entire film from beginning to end and serves as a foundation for the other satirical themes in this film. The purpose of this essay is to demonstrate that Kubrick's film is a clever and bold examination of the male-psyche, ego, sex-drive and the underlying sexual nature of war.
Onomastically speaking, each character's name has a sexual connotation or at least a reference to the connection between war and the male sex drive. The nervous, mealy mouthing president, Merkin Muffley lives up to his name. Both the words "merkin" and "muff" are vulgar references to the female genitalia and they imply a man of little consequence or someone who is without backbone. "Buck Turgidson" suggests an alpha-male that is no longer virile or able to perform.
Jack D. Ripper, the unstable man responsible for initiating the destructive chain of events, meshes well with the insinuation that he is a ruthless killer. Jack the Ripper was a notorious killer of prostitutes in the 19th century. Mandrake, is a reference to an herbal, medicinal root with properties that provide sexual fertility. It is also considered to be an aphrodisiac; which promotes a healthier sexual outlook and lifestyle.
The naming theme is an important one because the sexual references tied to each name highlight the character's purpose in the film. Mandrake, the potent and mentally healthy man, is set against Ripper, the incredibly unbalanced, frightened and insane man. Even the manner in which Mandrake opposes Ripper is symbolic of the two types of forces at odds. One represents benevolence, logic, and virility whereas the other is destructive, violent, detached and chaotic. Mandrake attempts to diffuse whereas Ripper is compelled to combat.
This symbolism is further enhanced by the revelation that Ripper concocted his preposterous theories while in bed with a woman after his inability to perform sexually. One can deduce that, for a male, mental clarity and stability is entirely hinged upon a healthy approach to sex, prowess and self-image.
It is practically impossible to view this film and ignore the ludicrous and pervasive juxtaposition of sex and war throughout the film. A great example of this occurs when war-mongering General Turgidson interlaces raucous sexual innuendo with banter (that eerily fore-shadows the climax of the film) when he is trying to mollify his mistress before going off to the "war room" to tend to more important things.
The curvaceous subordinate secretary is, curiously, the only woman present in Dr. Strangelove. Her significance, other than her physical and sexual beauty contrasted with Turgidson's blatant lack thereof, is to protest at Turgidson's involvement with anything related to the war room. Instead she asks him to stay in bed with her but he dismisses her advances. This indicates that he is sexually dysfunctional or incapable and as a result he feels inclined to embrace war as a means of fulfilling the sexual void within him.
Suggestive imagery and lewd phallic references punctuate the film in the form of sight gags. At the outset of the film we have the quasi-erotic mid-air refueling scene in which a B-52 "mates" with another plane via a long tube. This opening scene represents foreplay where naturally, the end of the film is reminiscent of an orgasm. The paraplegic scientist, Strangelove, becomes so visibly moved and aroused by the concept of post-apocalyptic eugenics that he literally stands erect out of his wheelchair and salutes "Mein Fuhrer" seemingly in ecstasy. Moments later, the world is destroyed, as if to signify the orgasm. It's interesting to note that both scenes are set against charming love songs and this duality helped to frame the mood of the entire movie.
The most symbolic scene in the film, one that truly exemplifies what Kubrick was trying to show his audience, is the famous "riding of the bomb" scene in which actor Slim Pickens howls with satisfaction and lust as he plummets toward earth with an atomic bomb firmly between his legs. The phallic imagery of straddling the bomb, the intensity and satisfaction with which he dislodges the bomb and ensures not only his own destruction but those around him, the determination and conviction that comprises his fanatical bravery, are all indicative of how actor Slim Pickens brilliantly conveyed the essence of the film. This comical portrayal of sex and war as one symbiotic act of desperation, futility and idiocy is precisely what Stanley Kubrick wished to illustrate.
Dr. Strangelove is not a perfect film, especially from a rhetorical point of view. The film casts aspersions on the frailty of the male psyche and it offers no semblance of a solution to what Kubrick has suggested could be the undoing of humanity. But overall it is still an important message. Through the symbolic imagery of the mating airplanes, the orgasmic apocalypse or even the suggestive conflict between impotence and fertility (Ripper vs. Mandrake), Dr. Strangelove challenges the very tenets of war and equates war to nothing but a cheap substitute; a deplorable mockery created by emotionally crippled men to simulate something far more powerful and meaningful.