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Any work which gives heavy, focused attention to Cold-Blooded Torture and/or mutilation of someone. This is usually seen in Horror Films these days, although it can be found in Exploitation Films, as well as various other works, as long as seeing/reading/etc. people getting tortured is the point of the work.

This isn't to show how wrong it is, as much as to give the audience some visceral thrills. Thus works will give lots of details (whether written, verbal, or visual) of the torture.

Films of this type may inspire one to jump up and shout "The Aristocrats!" just to break the tension.

Although the term was popularized in the early 2000s with the rise of films focusing on this, the genre has been around for a lot longer.

Now despite the name not referring to actual pornography, some films have combined both (and have thus become notorious for it).

A Sister Trope to Gorn, Mutilation Interrogation (and often overlaps with both).

Contrast Too Kinky to Torture (the victim enjoys it more than anyone else).

Not to be confused with hardcore S&M (since the torture there is more playing around), nor finding torture to be Fetish Fuel (although some suspect some of these films invoke that).

Examples of Torture Porn include:


Anime and Manga

  • Franken Fran: In one episode Fran (unknowingly) takes part in a torture porn movie. When she realizes what she took part in (and that it involved an actor playing her creator), she punishes the director appropriately.


Comic Books

  • The first issue of Hack Slash: The Series had Cassie being captured and mutilated by a torture porn-inspired slasher named Doctor Gross.

Fanfic

  • Cupcakes and all its sequels and spinoffs.

Film

  • Ilsa, She Wolf of the SS and its follow ups.
  • The Saw films.
  • Hostel and its sequel.
  • Anything from The Guinea Pig Collection, especially Flower Of Flesh and Blood, which was mistaken for a Snuff Film.
  • Salo Or The 120 Days Of Sodom, adapted from the even worse Marquis de Sade novel.
  • Ichi the Killer, when Kakihara or the twins are around.
  • The French film Martyrs, which starts as a bloody revenge flick on a seemingly normal family, devolves into humiliation torture, and ends with the martyr being graphically skinned alive, left to hang that way, and her long-sought otherworldy revelations driving her captor to suicide.
  • The Human Centipede and its sequel.
  • Mel Gibson got this kind of reputation through his movies The Passion of the Christ and Apocalypto, which both featured prolongued and graphic scenes of torture, punishment and human sacrifice.
  • Certain Giallo films. Most don't feature gore, just minimal specific incidents of violence which could hardly be classified as 'torture porn', but some of the most extreme ones (on the borderline with the horror genre), such as Fulci's Non si sevizia un paperino (Don't Torture A Duckling), do qualify for this trope.
  • Cannibal Holocaust contained scenes that were believable enough, at the time, to result in the arrest of the director, foreshadowing Charlie Sheen's snuff film fears by about twenty years. Includes rape with a foreign object followed by bludgeoning of the victim, dissection, cannibalism (of course), and an incredibly well-designed impalement scene which still is occasionally posted online as a real occurrence. To make it worse, all the animals that died in the movie were actually killed, leading to the "No Animals Were Harmed In the Making of this Film" disclaimer at the end of every movie; and the director made all the cast sign contracts to keep out of public sight and take no new work for a year to help sell the illusion that the film was genuine.
    • The director in fact had to bring the actors onto a talk show to prove that he hadn't actually killed them during filming.
  • Pink Flamingos, the film to start with if you're interested in the work of John Waters, plays with this trope mockingly. One scene, one very long and uncomfortable scene, features a man having sex with a chicken (resulting in bloody lacerations for the nude gentleman and an onscreen death for the chicken), and another features what can best be described as "a heartwarming torture sequence wherein women are beaten in a basement and raped with a turkey baster, with the resulting babies being sold to lesbians." Thankfully, John Waters is parodying the "True Crime" genre, so it's usually meant to be (disturbingly) funny.
  • The Last House on the Left: Most of its drama comes in the form of the torture and rape of two young women.
  • I Spit on Your Grave
  • Carver, which is about a hillbilly Snuff Film maker prone to mutilating some of his victims through means that include pliers to the balls, or a nail hammered into a bodypart, then wrenched out and hammered in again.
  • The works of Lucifer Valentine, collectively known as the "Vomit Gore Trilogy".
  • The August Underground series is a trilogy of faux-snuff films filled with real nasty shit, such as a guy getting his dick cut off and a woman being raped with the severed penis. It's also shot on video and appears to be deteriorated in order to give it that poor quality, bootleg VHS look.
    • Almost everything by that series's creator, Toetag Pictures. Even the relatively subdued (for them) Murder Collection V.1 had scenes of torture, a prolonged No-Holds-Barred Beatdown, and a graphic and slow beheading that looked like it came straight out of those execution videos created by terrorists or cartels.
  • An Experiment in Torture, the plot of which is literally just "strippers are captured and tortured to death".
  • Hardgore, a 1974 pornographic film, combines huge amounts of gore with literal porn. Orgies and beheadings go on at the same time. A truly insane flick.
    • Hardgore is probably the most infamous of the roughies, a type of extreme and story-based porn that combines rough sex with violence and bloodshed (sometimes allowing the filmmakers to market their creations as thrillers or horror). Other examples include Forced Entry, Baise Moi and The Texas Vibrator Massacre.
  • Train, which literally begins with a man being skinned alive.
  • Captivity
  • The Sinful Dwarf
  • The Men Behind the Sun series
  • Most Nazisploitation
  • The Loved Ones
  • W Delta Z and it's American counterpart, Scar 3D.
  • The Texas Chainsaw Massacre the Beginning
  • The Collector
  • Memorial Day at first seems to be a fairly standard slasher film, but then it develops a mean streak when the villain stops outright killing people and begins mutilating and torturing them.
  • Sick Girl
  • The "fucked up fondue" scene in Wrong Turn 4 Bloody Beginnings, along with a few other instances, like death via electroshock, and dismemberment on a makeshift, barbed wire rack.
  • Offspring and its pseudo-sequel, The Woman.
  • The Uwe Boll film Seed, infamous for a scene in which a woman is beaten with a hammer for five uninterupted minutes.
  • Cannibal, the film adaptation of the strange case of Armin Meiwes, the man who found someone willing to be killed and cannibalized. Apparently mind-shatteringly horrifying, to the point that it could probably be easily mistaken for the actual recording Meiwes made of his crime, which drove the jurors who saw it to psychological counseling.
    • That film's maker would later go on to create The Angel's Melancholy, an even more horrifying depraved "art" film.
  • Unthinkable: Nuclear bombs are set to go off, and it's up to Samuel L. Jackson to torture their whereabouts out of the man who planted them.
  • Many of Lucio Fulci's films, especially The New York Ripper, where a stripper is killed by having a broken bottle ground into her crotch.
  • Scrapbook: A sadistic psychopath abducts women, tortures them, and forces them to chronicle their experiences in a book he is deluded enough to think he can get published.
  • The Bunny Game, though there the focus is more on extreme psychological torture and humilation.

Live Action Television

  • There's a reason that Jack Bauer from 24 has a trope named after him. The ways in which he acquires information from his prisoners - and how these ways are both shown and described - fall into this category.
  • The occasional short on 1000 Ways to Die.
  • Masters of Horror, especially the second season.

Literature

  • American Psycho. The film adaptation excised it.
  • Haunted by Chuck Palahniuk - "Guts" is one of the featured short stories.

Music

  • The music video for the Eminem song "3 a.m." was described as this by New York Magazine.
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