30 of the most controversial films of all time

These movies have taboo storylines, graphic sex scenes, and gruesome violence

The Birth of a Nation (1915)

30 of the most controversial films of all time 1

Adapted from Thomas Dixon Jr.’s 1905 novel and play The Clansman, The Birth of a Nation chronicles the assassination of Abraham Lincoln by John Wilkes Booth and the relationship of two families —the pro-Union (Northern) Stonemans and the pro-Confederacy (Southern) Camerons — during the Civil War and Reconstruction eras over the course of several years.

The silent drama movie made it to the list of most controversial films of all time because of its depiction of African Americans (many of whom are played by white actors in blackface) as unintelligent and sexually aggressive toward white women. The film’s portrayal of the Ku Klux Klan (KKK) as a heroic and necessary force to preserve American values and the white supremacist social order also sparked outrage among African Americans and other minority groups.

Despite all the controversy, The Birth of a Nation performed well at the box office, grossing $16.7 million worldwide against a production budget of $8. Million.

Interesting facts about BTS
  • The group name, “BTS” stands for the Korean expression Bangtan Sonyeondan which translates to “Bulletproof Boy Scouts”. Band member J-Hope said that they chose this name because it represents BTS’s desire “to block out stereotypes, criticisms, and expectations that aim on adolescents like bullets.” But that isn’t the only meaning behind the name. In 2017, BTS said, as part of their new brand identity, that their name would also stand for Beyond the Scene” which extended their name to mean “growing youth BTS who is going beyond the realities they are facing, and going forward.”
  • BTS was originally intended to be a hip-hop group, similar to YG Entertainment’s 1TYM. This was because Big Hit Entertainment CEO Bang Si-hyuk met with RM and was very impressed by his rapping talents. However, Bang Si-hyuk changed his mind and decided that today’s youth needed “a hero who can lend them a shoulder to lean on, even without speaking a single word.”
  • BTS has said that all of the following musicians have inspired their music; Post Malone, Eminem, Seo Taiji and Boys, Nas, Kanye West, Drake, Charlie Puth, Danger, and Queen.
  • The band’s first English-language single, “Dynamite”, was released on August 21st. Its video broke the YouTube record for the most viewed music video premiere, grabbing the attention of three million viewers, and it set a new record for the most viewed video on the first day of release. “Dynamite” is also the first music video on YouTube to surpass 100 million views in less than one day.
  • BTS has been often labeled as “easily the biggest and most successful name in K-pop in the world” that can “do things no other name in their genre can.” Time magazine has gone as far as calling them the “Princes of Pop.”