Have you ever watched a movie that made you physically sick? Perhaps a horror movie was too gory, or a film was made in a way that caused motion sickness. If you've ever gotten ill watching a movie, whatever the reason for it, you're far from alone.
Filmmakers have been making movies that made viewers sick since the beginning of cinema. Luis Buñuel, a surrealist who aimed to shock audiences, made Un Chien Andalou in 1929. The film includes a close up of a razor blade cutting into a woman's eye. It shocked and appalled audiences, but also created a ton of buzz. In film school circles, Un Chien Andalou is a staple, largely in part due to Buñuel's shocking razor scene.
Believe it or not, a few of these films may have even led to viewers' demises.
The Perfection is a Netflix original about revered cellist Charlotte (Allison Williams) and musical prodigy Lizzie (Logan Browning) and their blossoming friendship. As the two travel through China, Lizzie gets sick. Things escalate from there.
Audiences took to Twitter to warn potential viewers about how disgusting the film is. Some even claimed to have gotten sick themselves after watching the horror. "I rarely get squeamish but holy f*ck the movie The Perfection is making me want to throw up," said one user.
Imagine a director purposefully trying to induce panic with the use of sound. It happens a lot more than you would think. In Gaspar Noé's graphic drama Irréversible (2002), the director used a 27 hertz bass frequency during the first 30 minutes of the film. The frequency cannot be heard by the human ear, but has the ability to induce panic, anxiety, extreme sorrow, and heart palpitations.
Some audience members left the theater after the first half hour of Irréversible, they felt so sick and disoriented.
Forget the fake blood and gore of horror films. Danny Boyle's 127 Hours (2010), based on the true story of Aron Ralston (James Franco), a mountain climber who got his arm trapped in a canyon in Utah, is about real life survival. Ralston has one way out of a deep canyon: he must amputate his right arm with a pocketknife if he wants to live.
Reports of audience members vomiting, passing out, having seizures, and panic attacks came flooding in from theaters around the world as the film premiered. Wrap contributor John Foote wrote of the amputation scene, "I cannot remember a reaction to a film like this in a very long time, perhaps not since The Exorcist sent audiences scurrying for the doors."
Mel Gibson's controversial depiction of the last 12 hours of the life of Jesus forced several movie-goers out of the theater. Roger Ebert said of the 2004 drama, "The movie is 126 minutes long, and I would guess that at least 100 of those minutes, maybe more, are concerned specifically and graphically with the details of the torture and death of Jesus. This is the most violent film I have ever seen."
The film may have even been responsible for the demise of a Kansas woman. A female spectator reportedly had a fatal heart attack while watching the graphic crucifixion scene. "It was the highest emotional part of the movie," a spokeswoman for KAKE-TV in Wichita reported. The woman reportedly did not have any existing health problems.