23 Sexy Movies Made By Women That Will Turn You On

*fans self hysterically*

Sexy movie: 'Portrait Of A Woman On Fire'
Lilies Films
Originally Published: 

There have been many steamy, iconic sex scenes in film, and most of them feature a lot of emphasis on the female body, with characters largely designed for male viewing pleasure. Where there has historically been less emphasis in these movies, then, is the female gaze, which represents the viewpoint of the female viewer. Shocker ⁠— it turns out that most of the intensely erotic films that society has remembered and celebrated over the years have been written and directed by men. (This isn’t that surprising, given that most of all movies ever made have been written and directed by men.) But that doesn't mean there aren't tons of sexy movies made by women out there.

The female erotic and romantic gaze has recently blown up in television, featuring in women-led shows that include Phoebe Waller-Bridge’s Fleabag, Sally Rooney’s Normal People, and Issa Rae’s Insecure. But as for the big screen, it might be a shock to confront how many iconic and beautifully composed sex movie scenes come from films that were directed by men: Blue is the Warmest Color, Nymphomaniac, Y Tu Mamá También, Wetlands, 9 1/2 Weeks.

When it comes to hunting down super sexy films directed by women, you'll find that many of these filmmakers are queer, and that when the plot is about two women romantically involved, it's much less likely that a man will be writing or directing. Another interesting thing that stands out is how many of the movies on this list were written and directed by the same women. It seems that many female filmmakers are crafting and guiding the story on multiple levels and have complete ownership of it.

Hopefully more and more women will continue to bring their stories to the big screen, as well as bring along great sex scenes and sensual aesthetics like the ones in the movies below. If you’re looking for a steamy movie filmed through the female gaze, here are 23 sexy films made by women.


Portrait Of A Lady On Fire (2019)

Director and Screenwriter: Céline Sciamma

This movie is the new blueprint for a sexy, tension-filled movie filmed through the female gaze. In Portrait of a Lady on Fire, a young painter, Marianne (Noémie Merlant), is commissioned to paint the wedding portrait of aristocrat Héloïse (Adèle Haenel) in France circa 1770. As time inches closer to the wedding, the two women get entrenched deeper in an affair day by day.

Watch on Hulu


The Beguiled (2017)

Director: Sofia Coppola

Based on the book by Thomas P. Cullinan and directed by Sophia Coppola, The Beguiled is filled with a star-studded cast and crazy sexual tension. It tells the story of an injured Civil War soldier (Colin Farrell) who seeks refuge in an all-female Southern boarding school where the teachers and students (who include Nicole Kidman, Kirsten Dunst, and Elle Fanning) are more than a little eager to come to his aid, causing betrayal and jealousy to spawn.

Watch on Netflix


Mary Queen Of Scots (2018)

Director: Josie Rourke

Coming back to her homeland of Scotland to reclaim her rightful throne after having become the Queen of France at 16 years old and a widow at 18 years old, Mary Stuart (Saoirse Ronan) faces the pressure to remarry, as well as bend to the will of Elizabeth I (Margot Robbie), who officially rules the country. While this period drama doesn’t sound incredibly sexy from the outset, there are some incredibly steamy bedroom scenes as Mary meets with suitors and has new sexual experiences.

Watch on Amazon


Happiest Season (2020)

Director: Clea DuVall

Screenwriters: Clea DuVall and Mary Holland

Who doesn’t love a sexy holiday movie? Featuring many sensual scenes and makeout sequences between Abby (Kristen Stewart) and Harper (Mackenzie Davis), Happiest Season tells the tale of a woman, played by Stewart, who hasn’t yet come out to her conservative parents, but brings her girlfriend home during Christmas.

Watch on Hulu


Hustlers (2019)

Director and Screenwriter: Lorene Scafaria

Hustlers, inspired by a true story, follows a crew of savvy strippers who devise a scheme to take advantage of their Wall Street clients when money is tight after the 2008 financial crisis. And it’s all about powerful, hot women. Featuring stars like Jennifer Lopez, Constance Wu, Julia Stiles, Keke Palmer, Cardi B, and Lizzo, this sexy film — filled with incredible pole dancing skills — is not one to miss.

Watch on Hulu


Sleeping With Other People (2015)

Director and Screenwriter: Leslye Headland

Starring Alison Brie and Jason Sudeikis, Sleeping With Other People is a perfect mix of humor, romance, drama, and, you guessed it, sex. It follows as two serial cheaters, who had a one night stand 12 years ago, try to maintain a relationship as friends despite their mutual attraction.

Watch on Amazon


Take This Waltz (2012)

Director and Screenwriter: Sarah Polley

Michelle Williams' character has a steamy affair with an artist from her neighborhood and ultimately changes everything about her life in this 2012 film, which contains a pretty revelatory 360-sex scene.

Watch on Tubi


Love And Basketball (2000)

Director and Screenwriter: Gina Prince-Bythewood

There are few things sexier than the tension that builds during a heated athletic matchup. In Love and Basketball, the classic romance starring Omar Epps and Sanaa Lathan, director Gina Price-Bythewood successfully frames a great romantic storyline around the characters' love for working up a sweat.

Watch on HBO Max


Bound (1996)

Directors and Screenwriters: Lana and Lily Wachowski

Sisters Lana and Lily Wachowski directed the ultra sexy crime drama, Bound, which is about a lesbian con-turned-plumber who sparks a romance with the girlfriend of a Mafia member. The film stars Gina Gershon and Jennifer Tilly and contains some super hot sex scenes that are unforgettable. Thank you, Lana and Lily.

Watch on Hulu


Jennifer's Body (2009)

Director: Karyn Kusama

Screenwriter: Diablo Cody

If you like your sexy movies with a major dose of horror, Jennifer's Body is for you. The sexual tension between Jennifer and Needy is palpable, with Megan Fox and Amanda Seyfried both bringing out amazing and incredibly unique types of hotness in their characters.

Watch on Amazon


The Kids Are All Right (2010)

Director and Screenwriter: Lisa Chodolenko (with Stuart Blumberg)

The Kids Are All Right is revelatory for the way it frankly portrays the complexities of long-term relationships and the spectrum of sexuality, all while delivering some realistic and very hot sex scenes.

Watch on Amazon


Better Than Chocolate (1999)

Director: Anne Wheeler

This Canadian romantic comedy follows a woman, Maggie, who has recently struck up a relationship with another woman named Kim. When her mother and brother are forced to move into her apartment with her, she feels the need to hide her relationship. This movie features a chocolate body painting scene between the lovers, so, you know, enough said.

Watch on Amazon


Poison Ivy (1992)

Director: Katt Shea

Screenwriters: Katt Shea and Melissa Godard (with Andy Ruben)

A very young (17 years old, in fact) Drew Barrymore stars alongside Sara Gilbert in this sexy dramatic thriller. When private school girl Sylvie, played by Barrymore, strikes up a relationship with Ivy, played by Gilbert, her entire world spirals into chaos. It's hard to find online and not currently available on streaming services, but Poison Ivy is a cult classic worth the hunt and the watch.


The Piano (1993)

Director and Screenwriter: Jane Campion

A mute piano teacher who is married to a man she does not love embarks on a passionate affair in this movie that won three Oscars in 1993, including a Best Actress award for star Holly Hunter. It's a movie that's steamy, heart-wrenching, and beautiful.

Watch on Netflix


Sleeping Beauty (2011)

Director and Screenwriter: Julia Leigh

This is a gorgeous, erotic film loosely inspired by the classic story of Sleeping Beauty. Emily Browning stars as a university student who experiences a sexual awakening when she is initiated as a "Sleeping Beauty," a role for which she is sedated and presented in absolute submission to her clients.

Watch on Apple TV


Marie Antoinette (2006)

Director and Screenwriter: Sofia Coppola

Kirsten Dunst stars as the titular queen, who parties hard and has an affair while her royal husband remains disinterested. It's a pastel, playful, and passionate retelling of the story of the long villainized Queen of France, and it's incredibly sexy to boot.

Watch on HBO Max


Strange Days (1995)

Director: Kathryn Bigelow

This sci-fi thriller is based around the premise that in the future, people can record all their experiences using an illegal device built into their eyes. That means there's a lot of people making bank off of selling their very vivid sexual experiences.

Watch on Amazon


Carol (2015)

Screenwriter: Phyllis Nagy

Though directed by Todd Haynes, Carol, the gorgeous and touching romance between two women (played by Cate Blanchett and Rooney Mara) in the 1950s, was written by acclaimed playwright Phyllis Nagy. The film's most significant love scene is incredibly sexy and also beautifully shot.


Something's Gotta Give (2003)

Director and Screenwriter: Nancy Meyers

Anyone with ageist views about who is allowed to be sexy and have erotic relationships should consult this romantic comedy, which stars Diane Keaton as a woman who has incredibly sexy relationships with two characters played by Keanu Reeves and Jack Nicholson.

Watch on Amazon


Kama Sutra: A Tale Of Love (1997)

Director and Screenwriter: Mira Nair

You know by the name that it's going to be pretty sexy and erotic. This film tells the story of two young women, a princess and a servant, who go through tumultuous lives full of romantic betrayal.

Watch on Tubi


Chloe (2009)

Screenwriter: Erin Cressida Wilson

Directed by Atom Egoyan and written by Erin Cressida Wilson, Chloe is an erotic thriller starring the impossibly attractive cast of Amanda Seyfried, Liam Neeson, and Julianne Moore. Watch as a skeptical wife hires a prostitute to lure her husband and see if he gives into temptation.

Watch on Starz


Diary Of A Nymphomaniac (2008)

Screenwriter: Cuca Canals

Though directed by a man, Christian Molina, Diary of A Nymphomaniac, which lives up to its sex-centric name, was written by Cuca Canals. Written and performed in Spanish, but subtitled in English, it follows as a young girl lets lust lead her into professional sex work.

Watch on Amazon


High Art (1998)

Director and Screenwriter: Lisa Cholodenko

Ally Sheedy and Radha Mitchell's characters — a photographer and assistant editor who prioritize their careers above all else — embark on an affair in this sexy 1998 indie film from Lisa Cholodenko, who directed The Kids Are All Right.

Watch on Amazon

All of these movies illustrate that the only thing better than a hot sex scene is a hot sex scene written or directed by someone other than a dude.