A film which focuses on morbid, shocking elements such as torture, serial killing, cannabilism, and sex in a gratuitous and excessive fashion. For example, a crime movie which focuses more on the lurid details of committing the crime or its effects on the victim, rather than the police efforts to solve it. Or a movie that's excessively violent and gory beyond what's needed for the plot or theme. That — excessive violence or sexuality — seems to be the main elements of an exploitation film. "Raw", outrageous footage is the name of the game. Bonus points if the production has that "low-budget" feel to it, though it isn't strictly necessary.
In the past, such films were sometimes made featuring lurid scenes with the supposed intent to be educational, such as Reefer Madness, or purportedly educational films from the 1960s about nudist colonies or sexual practices, which were just an excuse for nudity. Regardless of the purportedly educational intent, the lurid scenes were often meant to be the main source of entertainment.
In The '60s and The '70s, these films reached something of a Golden Age — perhaps in response to the "arty" mainstream films of the Hollywood Renaissance. This was the era of drive-in "grindhouse" double-features and limited releases touring around the country with crackly prints and at times missing reels. It was also the era of Blaxploitation films with gun-toting Black heroes.
It's sometimes debatable as to whether a given film is an Exploitation Film or not. If there's a heavy emphasis on plot and background detail, yet at the same time the visceral elements are emphasized and played up in detail, then people will disagree on whether or not it fits this category. For example, The Passion of the Christ goes into a ton of detail in watching Jesus be tortured. Yet, many churches were turning out in droves to see it, despite it being a film that consists of two hours of torture followed by the death of the lead character. Due to the movie's serious theme and background material, some argue that it isn't exploitation at all, since Jesus's torture was not intended for the audience's excitement, while others argue precisely the contrary.
That's part of the dividing line. Is the violence or sexuality in a movie gratuitous, meant largely for entertainment? Or is it used to enhance the plot or theme? Since The Girl Next Door is a fictionalized story based on a true crime involving a real girl who was systematically abused by her family, what is it? Is it exploitation because the story itself is fictionalized and involves made-up characters instead of literally retelling the story of the crime? And even if it did retell the story of actual crime, would it still be exploitation?
Because one person's "gritty realistic drama" is another's "entertainingly realistic gritty exploitation", the line can sometimes be thin.
When these films are set in prisons, Artistic License – Prison is practically unavoidable. Those of the Girls Behind Bars genre (Black Mama, White Mama for example) feature inmates in absurdly short and/or low-cut uniforms that are all about the Fanservice. Real life prison uniforms throughout history are usually plain, drab and VERY far from flattering, let alone sexy.
Most exploitation films, by their nature, tend to be B-movies.
A Super-Trope to Blaxploitation, Cannibal Film, Mondo, and Nazisploitation.
Compare Video Nasties (moral panic about these films that occurred in Britain in The '80s), Gorn, Torture Porn, Euroshlock (which is commonly accused of this) and Murder Simulators (The latter is the video game version of this trope).
Examples will be subjective:
- There were also a large number of OVAs and anime movies in the 80's and 90's that were exported across the pond (mainly because of Manga Entertainment picking them up because they were so bad that you could get the license to them for a song) that practically reveled in graphic violence, nudity and sex. For every Ghost in the Shell or AKIRA that brought anime into the mainstream and influenced the culture with their stories, animation quality, and themes, there was a large handful of Mad Bull 34 and Genocyber.
- Related to above, Hentai OVA adaptations of gorntastic Porn Without Plot Eroge tends to head into this way. The original source materials are no better.
- The vast majority of works by Go Nagai fall under this, whether it's stories full of excessive gore and violence, or excessive fan-service and sexual content. In fact, it was Go Nagai who helped influence the rise of exploitative anime and manga series today.
- Rin Daughters Of Mnemosyne features so many lesbian sex scenes, attempted rapes, torture scenes and gore that it feels very much like the anime version of an exploitation movie.
- Genocyber took full advantage of the tendency for anime in the 90's to be ultra-violent. Genocyber is as gory and violent as it gets, featuring characters getting mutilated and killed in the most extreme ways possible. Children running through a field, then getting their brains exploded from their head and turned into a fine pink mist by attack helicopters. A meddling detective getting knocked out and then waking up just moments before he dies to find his intestines were decoratively scattered all over the room while still attached to his body. That sort of stuff.
- Panty & Stocking with Garterbelt is a comedy Grossout Show that focuses on sex and swearing. Special mention goes to the English dub, who at the request of the original Japanese producers, threw in as many swear words as they could think of, just to teach them new forms of profanity. Panty alone says "Fuck" and variations there-of no less than 282 times over the course of 13 episodes composed of 26 11MinuteShorts, and that's just the F word alone. By comparison, the cuss-tastic 26 half-hour episode series Black Lagoon doesn't even reach half that, and South Park needed numerous seasons to reach the same number. Many people believe that the dub is much funnier with all the new swear words added in and the more sexual references.
- Redo of Healer centers around a protagonist who decides to get revenge on his tormentors by raping and killing them (usually in that order). Aside from the heavy focus on rape, the series also features copious amounts of sex scenes and fanservice, to the point that the anime is about as close as you can get to a Hentai without explicit sexual content.
- On the non-violence side, there are more than a few anime who's sole purpose is Fanservice for Fanservice's sake, including the infamous Eiken and Keijo!!!!!!!!.
- Master of Martial Hearts tries to be a scathing indictment of fighting fanservice anime, but the actual payoff for this comes right out of left field in the final episode, and the rest of the time it gleefully indulges in exactly the kind of fanservice it's trying to condemn.
- Berserk is an interesting SubvertedTrope subversion. The series is a Dark Fantasy manga that's all about the journey of Guts as he travels with his True Companions across an unthinkably horrible and excessively cruel medieval setting where the most horrible things you can imagine happening are all but prevalent, including copious amounts of incredibly excessive fan-service and explicit sexual content that would make a Hentai look G-rated, heavy focus on rape that is gratuitous as gratuitous gets, all sorts of horrifying aberrations and absolutely inhuman monstrosities that are enough to make Junji Ito proud, tons and tons of extreme graphic violence, gratuitous shock value and excessive gore that would make Redo of Healer and Crossed look like a Disney film, and much more. However, this all works in its favor (unlike the other examples) to produce an incredibly compelling story, being a crowning example of True Art Is Angsty.
- Traffic in Souls (1913), about "white slavery" (forced prostitution) is probably the Ur-Example.
- Ingagi (1930), a Mockumentary (initially presented as a legitimate documentary) about a tribe in Darkest Africa that, to avoid attacks from hostile gorillas nearby, sacrifices one woman a year to the apes. The apes then use these women as sex slaves.
- Reefer Madness (1932) is an odd case. It was originally created by a church in an attempt to warn about the dangers of marijuana, and was titled Tell Your Children. A company specializing in exploitation films bought the rights to it and spiced it up with extra scenes and a new title, changing it into an intentional exploitation film.
- Maniac (1934) was made by the same people who turned Reefer Madness into an exploitation film. It's a completely crazy story about a Mad Scientist doctor and his even crazier sidekick who kills him and tries to take his place. It has a Cat Fight, it has a topless woman being raped by a crazed feral man, it has hot women lounging around in lingerie for no damn reason, it has a crazy guy who kills a doctor feeling up a topless patient...
- Child Bride (1938) was a rather infamous one back in the day. It was supposed to be an indictment of irregular marriage laws in the Appalachian Mountains. So why the extended scene of a naked 12-year old girl going swimming? This one is infamous for being a movie the MST3K crew refused to riff on. (and while The Cinema Snob did review it, claiming that he had no standards, even he had a difficult time reviewing it.)
- Mom and Dad (1945): Featured authentic footage of a woman giving childbirth, as well as authentic footage of the effects of venereal disease. One of the highest-grossing motion pictures of the era (and that's all motion pictures, not just exploitation films).
- Revenge of the Virgins (1959): A bizarre western nude film in which a tribe of topless female Indian warriors guard a treasure against trespassers.
- House on Bare Mountain (1962): The Wolfman, Dracula and Frankenstein spy on a girls' school in the mountains, where most of the girls sunbathe in the nude.
- Mondo Cane (1962): A "documentary" showing bizarre scenes filmed at various places across the world. Became a series that inspired various rip-off movies, all featuring shocking imagery of sex, nudity, violence and death. Sometimes staged. Sometimes not.
- Kiss Me Quick! (1964): In this fleshy comedy-horror romp, a mad scientist aids an alien who has been teleported to Earth on a quest to find the perfect female specimen.
- Bad Girls Go to Hell (1965): A housewife kills her would-be rapist, goes on the run, and keeps bumping into other would-be rapists.
- Faster, Pussycat! Kill! Kill! (1965): A Russ Meyer film about three buxom go-go dancers who plan to rob a crippled, perverted old man. This is after their leader, for no good reason, beats the hell out of a guy rather graphically until he dies, then kidnaps his girlfriend who spends the whole film in a bikini.
- Africa Addio (1966): A sensationalized account of the end of colonialism in Africa and the war and bloodshed that subsequently ensued.
- The Notorious Daughter of Fanny Hill: A 1966 sexploitation film starring Stacey Walker as the amorous daughter of the sex-wild Fanny Hill, the aptly-named Miss Kissey Hill who employs herself as a high-class courtesan who caters to the desires of the crowned heads of Europe.
- The Wild Angels (1966): A Roger Corman film about a California motorcycle gang and their chaotic spree while looking out for one of their members. The gang's leader is played by Peter Fonda, meaning that film features Fonda, Harley-Davidson motorcycles and 1960s counterculture three years before Easy Rider.
- Teenage Mother (1967) was described by several reviews as basically everything that Juno was not.
- Confessions of a Psycho Cat (1968): A sleazy Setting Update of The Most Dangerous Game with a lot of gratuitous nudity thrown in.
- Hot Spur (1968): A deranged stablehand kidnaps the wife of a ranch owner to avenge the rape of his sister, and massive bloodshed follows.
- Sweden: Heaven and Hell (1968): A largely sensationalized, titillating examination of life in the titular nation, with particular focus on its liberal attitudes towards sex and drugs. Nowadays, oddly enough, best known for its soundtrack, from which "Mah Nà Mah Nà" originated.
- They Saved Hitler's Brain (1968): As its title suggests, Nazi war criminals preserve Hitler's brain on a small tropical island until the time is right to resurrect him and, along with him, the Third Reich.
- Vixen! (1968): A bush pilot's oversexed wife seduces every male in sight, with the exception of her husband's black friend.
- The Ramrodder (1969): An adult western that's part nudie-cutie, part violent "roughie". Notorious for its connection to Charles Manson as well as its lurid sado-masochistic whipping scene with Kathy Williams.
- The Ribald Tales of Robin Hood (1969): The Erotic Adventures of Robin Hood, his Lusty Men and Bawdy Wenches. A fairly standard Robin Hood story but featuring far more bare breasts than usual.
- The Scavengers (1969): The film takes place in the period just after the American Civil War. Renegade Confederate soldiers take over a frontier town, but after they molest a young black woman, a group of ex-slaves arm themselves and counter-attack.
- The Devils (1970): Is Ken Russell genuinely interested in the supposed themes of religious faith and corrupt churchmen? Or is he just using it as an excuse for lurid hypersexuality and shock value?
- Hell's Bloody Devils (1970): A secret agent infiltrates a neo-Nazi crime group that prints counterfeit U.S. dollars with the help of a fellow undercover agent, where they discover that the group uses a vicious Swastika-clad motorcycle gang to do their dirty work. It should be noted that the appearance of outlaw bikers in this movie is the result of a quite particular production history: It began shooting in 1967 as solely a spy thriller, but after the film couldn't be sold to a proper distributor, new footage featuring bikers was filmed and incorporated into the plot, which then did find a release.
- The Honeymoon Killers (1970): A docu-drama about the Real Life "Lonely Hearts Killers", Martha Beck and Raymond Fernandez, done on No Budget with an over-the-top score and a general air of grime throughout.
- The Student Nurses (1970): The Ur-Example of the "nurseploitation" film in which four comely young student nurses wear snug uniforms and get naked a lot. One gets an abortion, another gets mixed up with Hispanic left-wing radicals...first in a series of Roger Corman nurse movies that included Night Call Nurses (see below).
- The Corpse Grinders (1971): A cat food company in financial trouble turns to a new, cheap source of meat — the local graveyard. Only one problem — the new food makes cats develop a taste for human flesh, and kitties are tearing out throats all over town.
- Goodbye Uncle Tom (1971) is a Mondo film showing the degrading conditions in which black African slaves used to live. The film is far from subtle and notorious for creating walk-outs and riots among viewers.
- Hanzo the Razor (1972-1974): A trilogy of Japanese Jidaigeki films about a metsuke in the Edo period who exposes the nefarious plots of corrupt officials by raping women.
- The Last House on the Left (1972): Wes Craven's debut film about a group of girls who get kidnapped, raped and murdered by a bunch of psychopaths who are then killed off by the girls' parents.
- Night Call Nurses (1972): A "nurseploitation" film in which three Hospital Hotties have difficulty keeping their clothes on, with other plot threads including a sleazy psychiatrist and a "black power" political prisoner planning an escape.
- The Suckers (1972): A sexploitation film with a plot that follows a big-game hunter who invites employees from a modeling agency to his estate, where he hunts them. Plenty of gratuitous sex scenes occur before, and even during, the hunt. The only surviving print of the film, from a 1976 re-release, appears to contain at least two instances of missing footage.
- The Woman Hunt (1972): A sexploitation knockoff of The Most Dangerous Game produced by Roger Corman.
- The Bamboo House of Dolls (1973): Classic Shaw Brothers exploitation film set in a woman's prison. The plot follows "'The Great Escape'' closely, but with loads of additional nudity and exposed breasts in shower scenes.
- Black Mama, White Mama (1973): Early Pam Grier movie that starts in a women's prison and then follows the two protagonists as they escape and have to make their way, still chained together, across a tropical island while hunted both by the police and two criminal gangs. It contains a fair amount of graphic violence but is notable mostly for the enormous amount of Fanservice and female nudity.
- The Candy Snatchers (1973) is a crime movie about the kidnapping of a Catholic schoolgirl (called Candy, hence the name). The movie focuses heavily on her plight and the things that go wrong with the kidnapping. Meanwhile, the poor kidnap victim is seen Bound and Gagged an awful lot throughout the entire movie. It does not end well.
- Forced Entry (1973) is said by some to be the first "deranged Vietnam veteran" film, and follows an unnamed former soldier as he stalks, rapes, tortures and kills random women. It features a lot of actual war footage, so we're shown women being abused alongside shots of gun battles, the wounded and dying, mass graves, bombs being dropped, etc. Oh, and it's a hardcore porno.
- Act of Vengeance (1974): Five women raped by the same man band together as a 'rape squad' to find their attacker and take revenge.
- Killers on Wheels (1974): A ruthless biker gang terrorizes a quartet of tourists until they crossed the line by committing murder. Blood, gore and tits ensues.
- Caged Heat (1974): Another women-in-prison movie featuring a lot of nudity. Directorial debut for Jonathan Demme.
- Virgins of the Seven Seas (1974) is another Shaw Brothers sleaze-fest of the 70s, set during the Opium War when five British women gets kidnapped and sold to a Manchu-era whorehouse. The five lead actresses are professional prostitutes hired from Germany and Austria, and spends most of the film topless. As described by Lexikon des internationalen Films, the plot can be summarized as "Schoolgirls goes Hong Kong: Wild mix of cheap Asian pirate-kung fu films and the German sex posse."
- Ilsa, She Wolf of the SS (1974) is a erotic film set in a Nazi concentration camp, featuring the most famous example of Nazisploitation ever.
- Dr. Minx (1974): A sexploitation film about a female physician who finds no fun in her brief affairs with patients who becomes a suspect while probing her rich husband's mysterious death.
- Poor Pretty Eddie (1975) has a woman's car breaking down near an isolated Deep South lodge run by a White-Dwarf Starlet and her rapist kept man.
- Savage Man, Savage Beast (1975): A mondo flick about hunting and the often-violent relationship between man and nature. Features a scene of a man being eaten by lions in front of his family.
- Bobbie Jo and the Outlaw (1976): A rebellious drifter and his curvaceous girlfriend become Bonnie and Clyde-style bankrobbers. Car chases, shootouts, a No-Tell Motel, a guy getting his throat cut, strippers, and the only nudity of Lynda Carter's career.
- Bloodsucking Freaks (1976): A man runs on shows which feature women being tortured and killed in grotesquely depraved ways. Unbeknownst to the audience, these acts are not staged but are authentic, and the women are not actresses but kidnapped and captive victims. Doesn't just take Refuge in Audacity, it invades Audacity and takes no prisoners.
- Island of Death (1976): A pair of serial killers, posing as newlyweds, visit the peaceful Greek island of Mykonos and start a rampage of murder, killing anyone they believe to be sinful or perverted.
- Survive! (1976): Like Alive, this film by René Cardona, Jr. is a dramatization of the 1972 Andes plane crash, with one crucial difference: whereas Alive focused on the human side of the disaster, Survive! focuses almost entirely on the sensational side, with particular emphasis on the cannibalism.
- The Faces of Death series (1978 – 1996), which was pretty much just a bunch of allegedly-real graphic footage strung together (though some of the footage was real...though the real footage slowly disappeared from the movies as the series went on.)
- Mr. No Legs (1978): Two cops fight to stop a drug kingpin and his enforcer, the titular "Mr. No Legs"... called as such because he's a double leg amputee armed with two shotguns built into his wheelchair.
- I Spit on Your Grave (1979): A woman gets raped in a long sequence and then takes revenge on her former attackers. Spawned a remake and two sequels.
- Cannibal Apocalypse (1980): Three Vietnam war vets return home having contracted a disease that gives them the taste for human flesh. Was one of the 39 films prosecuted in the UK as the Video Nasties.
- Cannibal Holocaust (1979/1980) is a film within a film featuring a documentary team's ill fated journey into the "Green Inferno" of South America. It sparked murder charges in Italy when it was released due to the graphic portrayals of violence onscreen leading to accusations of being a Snuff Film, as well as charges for animal cruelty due to the onscreen deaths of real animals. It also was banned in Britain as one of the Video Nasties.
- Caligula (1979): This infamous adaptation of the life of Roman Emperor Caligula is rather odd for an exploitation film, as it had a relatively large budget and featured A-List actors (including Malcolm McDowell, Peter O'Toole, and Helen Mirren). However, it also featured enough controversial imagery, including strong violence and extremely hardcore sex, to make it a definitive example of this trope.
- Guyana Crime Of The Century (1979): Another Ripped from the Headlines René Cardona, Jr. opus, this time featuring a cast who seemingly took a wrong turn on the way to the set of Fantasy Island (Stuart Whitman, Gene Barry, Joseph Cotten, John Ireland, Bradford Dillman, Yvonne De Carlo) in a Roman à Clef account of Rev. Jim Jones and the Jonestown tragedy.
- Killer Nun (1979): A nunsploitation flick about a sister's descent into drug addiction, madness, illicit love affairs, and murder following surgery to remove a brain tumor. Loosely based on the true story of Cecile Bombeek.
- Mad Max (1979) and its sequel Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior (1981): "Low-budget" Australian thrillers making use of the Outback desert, trucks, cars, leather, and garbage. The films that made Mel Gibson famous. The third movie, Mad Max: Beyond Thunderdome, doesn't have the low-budget "feel" to it and isn't nearly as "raw".
- The Clones of Bruce Lee (1980) is one of the most notorious of the so-called "Brucesploitation" movies, made to cash on the late Bruce Lee's popularity. Three Bruce Lee Clones work together to stop a Mad Scientist from Taking Over the World.
- Mad Foxes (1981): A film about a cycle of violence between a rich guy and a Neo-Nazi biker Gang.
- Master of the World (1983): A movie about warring prehistoric tribes with lots of lingering shots of messy decapitation and cannibalism.
- Stripped to Kill (1987): An erotic thriller/sexploitation film about a female Los Angeles police detective who goes undercover posing as a stripper to investigate a series of slayings connected to a strip club.
- Surf Nazis Must Die (1987): A retired woman seeks seeks bloody revenge on the neo-Nazi gangs ruling over the semi-apocalyptic beaches of California. Features many gory deaths, including one by speedboat.
- City Warriors (1988) might also count, with a setting in a red light district featuring a prostitution syndicate run by a Corrupt Politician. The movie's protagonist is on a desperate mission to save his sister after finding out she has been pimped to the syndicate by her unfaithful husband.
- Men Behind the Sun (1988), a Chinese film about the war crimes of Imperial Japan's infamous Unit 731, which blurs the lines between exploitation & docudrama. Which is quite appropriate, considering it's about a bunch of people who made their living not so much blurring the line between scientific research & sadistic torture, as injecting horse urine into its kidneys & feeding it to its cellmate...
- Dr. Lamb (1992): The titular Villain Protagonist is a necrophile-paedophile Serial Killer masquerading as a taxi driver, who murders drunk hookers during his night shift, sneak their bodies into his apartment and enjoy himself with their carcasses the following morning, with the title referring to his penchant for dissecting and dismembering his victims with impromptu medical / surgical equipment, and his victims being likened as "lambs to slaughter". It's as tasteless as it sounds.
- Angel of Vengeance (1993): The protagonist is a cop trying to bust her sister from a prostitution ring. Most of the movie is focused on the women being pimped by the prostitution syndicate, with roughly one rape scene every ten minutes.
- The Untold Story (1993) is a supposedly true story about a restaurant owner who killed a family (and a few employees) and fed them to his customers.
- Women on the Run (1993): Even seen a kung-fu exploitation film? Now you have! The protagonist is an idealistic young girl and martial arts champion from a small town, who travels to the big city hoping to make it big, only to be betrayed and pimped into prostitution. Making friends with a female cop, both titular women tries getting their lives together, but the cop's boyfriend had plans to use them as drug mules and dispose them off. Contains two scenes where the main lead fights in the nude, including one where she tries to defend her friend from a group of rapists, only to fail and be gang-raped side-by-side with her friend.
- Freeway (1996) was described by the director as arts-ploitation with Reese Witherspoon and Kiefer Sutherland.
- Ebola Syndrome (1996) is about a former serial killer who ends up contracting the titular virus, which he then decides to spread it across Johannesburg and Hong Kong simply For the Evulz. Contains similar elements to The Untold Story listed below, even starring the same actor.
- Concrete (2001) is a Japanese film where four yakuza-wannabes abducts a young girl and subjects her to countless hours of torture and abuse, loosely based on the infamous Junko Furuta murder.
- There Is A Secret In My Soup (2001), a borderline Torture Porn film where a young woman unable to repay her debts to four loan sharks gets kidnapped, endures at least thirty minutes of onscreen torture and abuse before she dies from cumulative injuries. And then gets chopped up and served as the daily soup with her skull stitched inside a Hello Kitty plush... it's based on a real-life murder incident from 1999.
- Paparazzi (2004): A celebrity whose family is hospitalized after a car wreck caused by over-the-top evil Paparazzi embarks into what feels like some celebrity's revenge fantasy when he starts going on a paparazzi killing spree.
- Hard Candy (2005) is about a teenage girl who knocks out and ties up a pedophile photographer whose house she visits. The entire movie is pretty much about her trying to extract information and confessions from him, using threats and torture.
- Sin City (2005) is exploitation-noir, which is probably a bit of a rarity. It may be that exploitation films are what Film Noir evolved into, since Noir represented the first push against the restrictions of The Hays Code, and exploitation films broke the Code down completely. Exploitation films tended to deal with material much darker even than Noir.
- Karla (2006): Based on the true story of two of Canada's most infamous serial killers, Paul Bernardo and Karla Homolka. Noted for featuring a pre-Supernatural fame Misha Collins as Bernardo (alongside Laura Prepon as the title character) who wasn't told that the film was actually based on a real story (and even when learning of it, wasn't made aware how infamous and emotionally relevant the cases were in Canada at the time) which alongside having a conversation with a surviving victim resulted in him disavowing the film.
- The Girl Next Door (2007, do not confuse it with the 2004 film) is about a teenage girl who is held captive and horribly mistreated by her adoptive family. It's based on a novel which in turn is inspired by a similar horrible real life case.
- An American Crime (also from 2007) is based on the case more directly, but goes out of its way to humanize the characters and go into detail about other things, leaving most of the tortures implied rather than shown. Yet, ironically, perhaps because it's directly based on the real life torture case and not simply being inspired by it, some reviewers accused this movie of being exploitative, even though it held back in the portrayals of violence.
- Grindhouse (2007) was an Affectionate Parody of the exploitation films of the 1970s. ("Grindhouse" being a slang term for the type of theater that specialized in showing actual films of this trope.) And both of the films spun out of Grindhouse Fake Trailers, Machete and Hobo With a Shotgun.
- Tokyo Gore Police (2008). The main page says it all: "What ensues is almost two hours-worth of decapitations, dismemberments, disembowelments, katanas, chainsaw duels, penises that double as guns, vagina monsters that eat people, breasts that squirt acid and people propelling themselves into the air with gouts of blood among other things."
- Big Tits Zombie (2010): A Japanese fantasy-horror film based on an obscure manga starring several known faces from Japan's adult movie industry. An exotic dancer named Rena Jodo who has returned from Mexico and is now staying with a group of other strippers struggle to get by in their lonely club that receives few customers. When their boss closes the club, they are forced to live in a local bath house and entertain gangsters for a job. When a horde of zombies is unleashed, it's up to this Ragtag Bunch of Misfits to stop the Zombie Apocalypse.
- Machete (2010): "Mexploitation" revenge flick by Robert Rodriguez. The title character (Danny Trejo), a disgraced former federale turned illegal immigrant day laborer, sets out on a Roaring Rampage of Revenge against an anti-immigrant senator (Robert De Niro) after being drawn into an Evil Plan on his part to justify the mass deportation of Mexican laborers. Spun off from one of the fake trailers Rodriguez produced for the above-mentioned Grindhouse. Features Cheech Marin, Don Johnson, Steven Seagal, and Lindsay Lohan in minor parts.
- A Serbian Film (2010): Infamous Serbian film about a retired porn star who is forced back to his occupation to commit all kinds of depraved sex scenes.
- Megan is Missing (filmed 2006; released 2011): An exploitation film posing as a warning against strangers on the internet, wherein a girl named Megan goes missing after meeting up with someone she met on the Internet, and her friend Amy seeks to find her and take him down, only to fall victim to him herself.
- Hobo With a Shotgun (2011): In a City with No Name which has become a Wretched Hive of scum and villainy, a nameless drifter (Rutger Hauer) spends his begging money on a shotgun and goes on a Roaring Rampage of Revenge against those who prey on the innocent. Also spun off from a Grindhouse trailer.
- The Human Centipede 2: Full Sequence (2011) is a somewhat notorious example in that while the original film was very controversial on its own, this film delivered the much-anticipated gore that was missing from the original, upping the victim count from 3 to 12 and including gems such as barbed wire rape, sandpaper masturbation, newborn stomping, tongue extraction and laxative-induced coprophagia. Some of its scenes were extreme enough for it be Banned in the UK (several decades after the end of the Video Nasties era) and, allegedly, converted to black-and-white to allow for a wider release.
- The Bunny Game (2012): A prostitute getting sexually tortured and raped For the Evulz by some trucker with nothing else to the plot. It ended up getting Banned in the UK due to eroticizing sexual violence and sadistic violence and was also unrated in America. This is one of the nastier examples out there, alongside The Human Centipede 2 and A Serbian Film (though it's nowhere near as infamous as those two).
- Escape from Tomorrow (2013): In this guerrilla horror flick, a man goes around Disney World stalking two French girls and ends up getting involved in a conspiracy surrounding the Disney parks. Features a passenger on the Big Thunder Railroad roller coaster being decapitated by a low overpass.
- Savaged (2013): A young woman is raped and murdered by rednecks, possessed by an Apache ghost, and seeks revenge. Features a man being disemboweled with a broken bottle.
- Jailbait (2014) is a standard Girls Behind Bars film with plenty of sex, violence, and drugs to drive the plot.
- Red Sparrow (2018) stars Jennifer Lawrence as a former ballet dancer trained as a sex spy. She is repeatedly shown naked, near-naked or scantily clad, as well as enormous amounts of Gratuitous Rape and attempted rape, all played for Fanservice.
- While being on a fairly bland basic cable channel limits how graphic they can get, the Lifetime Movie of the Week, with lurid premises about things like murder, kidnapping, prostitution, porn and drug addiction, counts. Joe Bob's Drive-In Theatre host Joe Bob Briggs has even said that Lifetime is the only platform that still makes classic-style Exploitation fare.
- Eminem's Relapse Concept Album is a grimy Slasher Movie in the format of an album, complete with Stunt Casting (Dominic West as his rehab counsellor, Elizabeth Keener as one of Slim's murder victims), exploitative use of Teen Pop stars as victims of the Serial Killer rampage, and some of the most graphic (and unrealistic) violence ever committed to a hip-hop album.
- F.A.T.A.L. feels like an exploitation film in RPG form: much Gratuitous Rape, overwhelming misogyny, heavy Vulgar Humor, general sleaze and absurdly overcomplicated mechanics, including a stat for head size. It has since become infamous for this and the online antics of its designer.
- Demonophobia is a fairly old Survival Horror game akin to Clock Tower with one big claim to infamy: the myriad different ways the young heroine Sakuri Kunikai can brutally meet her end. In addition, Sakuri spends the last leg of the game completely naked, and the setting is Hell itself.
- While the primary House of the Dead series is pretty standard horror affair, spinoff The House of the Dead: OVERKILL gleefully plays up a grindhouse angle directly inspired by the Rodriguez/Tarantino film, with a deep-voiced narrator introducing scenes and characters as if they were in a trailer, tons of gratuitous violence and swearing (to the point that it held a Guinness World Record for it until being usurped by Mafia II), and some blatant sex appeal in the form of Varla Guns, all wrapped up in film grain and X ratings. The stages also have names with exploitation-style phrasing such as "Papa's Palace of Pain" and "Ballistic Trauma".
- Manhunt and its sequel indulge in gratuitous violence in the form of their stealth based gameplay that emphasizes the "execution" mechanic - players are supposed to lurk behind unaware enemies while holding down the attack button for as long as possible, and upon releasing the button the player character tortures the enemy to death. In the first game the PC is being forced into killing enemies at the behest of a director making snuff movies, and the game's art style directly mimics grainy VHS tapes classic grindhouse films were distributed on. The second game does away with the VHS style looks, ups the violence, and includes references to more modern Torture Porn films, such as Hostel.
- Mother Russia Bleeds is about as close as you can get to a video game version of a grimy, ultraviolent exploitation flick. Fights are brutally over-the-top and as gory as a pixellated game can get, stages are grungy and often covered in viscera all on their own, the soundtrack is full of dark pulsing techno beats, and using drugs (modelled after a real-life Russian street drug called Krokodil) is a major gameplay element for both healing and buffing your attacks. Two Best Friends Play describe the game at one point as a Spiritual Successor to the games of Bloodlust Software (a 90's indie duo who made PC games with a similar exploitative feel.)
- Mortal Kombat is the most well-known example in video games, with its abundance of gore and use of Fatalities as its big selling point, only getting more gruesome with its 2011 reboot and beyond (though the reboot debatably took the series out of its B-movie-esque roots with more of a focus on story.) The series also spawned a host of imitators hoping to cash in on the resulting fighting game ultraviolence craze, including Strata's Time Killers and Bloodstorm, Way of the Warrior, Eternal Champions and even the aforementioned Bloodlust Software's Timeslaughter.
- Postal and its Spiritual Successor Hatred, both isometric shooters with a pitch-black tone and a focus on mass-slaughtering innocent civilians (the latter even caused a truckload of controversy with people arguing that it shouldn't even be allowed to exist.) Postal 2, however, focused more on Black Comedy and being an irreverent Grand Theft Auto-esque satire of anything and everything, with mass slaughter being completely optional. Ironically, Postal 2 garnered the same controversy that Hatred did but the lesser-known-at-the-time Postal 1 didn't as a result.
- The Boyfriend To Death series consist of Gorn-filled, Squick-filled, and sex-filled scenarios between the player character and the psychos that they might end up in relationships with.
- Diabolik Lovers concerns a girl left in the care of a Big, Screwed-Up Family of vampire Bishōnen who repeatedly try to sexually assault her, all done for Fanservice.
- As seen in the page quote, The Cinema Snob reviews z-grade exploitation movies, and even made his own exploitation mini-series.
- Fluffy Pony stories tend to skew towards the torture, rape, mutilation, and death of the titular creatures, reveling in Gorn and featuring often bleak and uncompromisingly dark tales and artwork.