• It’s no love-fest with these couplings from (left to right) ‘The Volcano’, ‘Lost Highway’ and ‘Vampyros Lesbos’. (SBS)
Not feeling the love for, well, love? Here are hours of viewing pleasure light on the love-treacle.
By
Jim Mitchell

5 Mar 2019 - 11:19 AM  UPDATED 18 Mar 2019 - 9:54 AM

Soured on romance? Done with love? From SBS VICELAND comedy You’re the Worst, an atypical rom-com, to tales of relationships gone very, very  wrong, there's plenty you can watch on SBS On Demand that will satisfy your cold, hardened heart.

You can binge on You’re the Worst  like a big box of 'it doesn't have to be Valentine's Day to eat these' (catch up on the first four seasons at SBS On Demand before diving into season 5), or if you want a one-shot, here are seven movies – warped stories of love, lust and lunacy  – that fit the bill.

Lost Highway

The marriage of jazz saxophonist, Fred (Bill Pullman) and wife Renee (Patricia Arquette) is hardly rosy, and things are about to get freaky. A videotape turns up showing Fred with his horrifically butchered wife, and in jail waiting to be executed for her murder, he morphs into teenage car mechanic Pete (Balthazar Getty). Pete then takes up with femme fatale Alice (also Arquette).

Is this some kind of reincarnated coupling? Talk about messy relationships! Oozing style, this is a suitably head-scratchy dissection of guilt and denial – or something – from David Lynch.

Vampyros Lesbos

Nothing says love like a vampiress Countess (Soledad Miranda) and descendant of Count Dracula, luring young women to her island, bedding them and sucking the life out of them for eternal youth.

With a poster line of “A psycho sexadelic horror freakout!” and Total Film’s appraisal that it’s a “cult landmark in Eurotrash entertainment”, what better inducement to settle in for cult exploitation auteur Jesús Franco’s 1970 Sapphic softcore sex-fest.

How To Break Up With Your Douchebag

 

As if the name isn’t indication enough, director/co-writer Gabriela Tagliavini (Ladies’ Night) is hardly shooting for your typical rom-com here. 

Amanda (Mariana Treviño) is a single therapist, or “break-up specialist” (let’s just call her the anti-Hitch), helping her female clients kick their douchebag men to the curb with some clever scheming. But when she takes on a case that’s personal, could love-phobic Amanda be Cupid’s next target?

High Heels

A love story with a very unhappy ending kicks things into gear in celebrated Spanish filmmaker Pedro Almodóvar’s colourful 1991 melodrama, when the ex-lover of peacockish actress Becky del Páramo (Marisa Paredes), now husband of Becky’s daughter Rebeca (Victoria Abril), turns up dead. One of the women confesses, but each is just as much a suspect.

Look out for some very Almodóvarian humour when newsreader Rebeca announces the death of her own husband on air.

Hidden

Austrian director Michael Haneke’s Cannes Film Festival winner and Oscar nominated film is a portrait of a seemingly content married couple, Georges (Daniel Auteuil) and Anne (Juliette Binoche), in free fall. 

Their Paris home is being surveilled, as evidenced by creepy videotapes that they’re sent (hello Lost Highway!), some with disturbing drawings. As the hunt for the stalker begins, the question becomes, what secrets is Georges harbouring?

An unnerving, paranoid thriller perfect for those happy for a resolution to remain elusive.

She Killed in Ecstasy

Jesús Franco and muse Soledad Miranda (Vampyros Lesbos) team up again for another warped 1970s erotic horror.

Miranda plays the young psycho widow of a doctor whose controversial research is put a stop to by a medical board, leading to his death. She picks each man on the board off with grisly, macabre violence “and extreme ecstasy”.

Keep an eye out for the director as one of the victims of the vengeful widow’s gruesome dispatches. 

Bite

 

Bachelorette holidays are a time to let your hair down… and get an insect bite that causes acid-vomit, flaking skin and the birthing of myriad insect eggs! Basically, bachelorette Casey (Elma Begovic) is getting very Brundlefly in her apartment-turned-cocoon, and the wedding plans ain’t looking good.

A stomach-churning little body horror that owes a significant debt to David Cronenberg’s The Fly.

* Note: Total Film reviews are housed online at Games Radar.

You’re the Worst streams at SBS On Demand on Thursdays and airs Mondays at 10:50pm on SBS VICELAND.

The first four seasons are available to binge right now. Here’s the latest episode of Season 5:

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