August 21, 1998 at 04:00 AM EDT

What with that blue dress of Monica Lewinsky’s and Cameron Diaz’s ‘do in There’s Something About Mary, something unspeakable has become the hot topic. But it’s nothing new to the movies, as a browse through the video shelves proves.

DR. STRANGELOVE, OR: HOW I LEARNED TO STOP WORRYING AND LOVE THE BOMB (1964, Columbia TriStar, unrated) In Stanley Kubrick’s Cold War farce, maniacal general Jack D. Ripper (Sterling Hayden) bombs the USSR because he suspects the Soviets of tampering with America’s water supply and endangering his ”life essence.”

EVERYTHING YOU ALWAYS WANTED TO KNOW ABOUT SEX BUT WERE AFRAID TO ASK (1972, MGM, R) The film’s final sketch is writer-director Woody Allen’s vision of coitus as an action film of the interior. While Tony Randall and Burt Reynolds give orders from ”mission control” — the brain — Allen himself plays one of numerous reproductive paratroopers.

PORTNOY’S COMPLAINT (1972, Warner, R) In this awkward adaptation of Philip Roth’s confessional novel, desire clouds the vision of teenager Alexander Portnoy (Richard Benjamin) when a fumbled makeout session with Bubbles Girardi ends in a messy mishap that temporarily blinds him.

THE RIGHT STUFF (1983, Warner, PG In a scene nowhere to be found in Tom Wolfe’s book about Project Mercury, prospective astronauts submit samples for ”motility factor” testing. Air Force pilot Gordon Cooper (Dennis Quaid) and Marine John Glenn (Ed Harris) serve their nation from adjacent bathroom stalls humming competing renditions of ”The Air Force Song” and ”The Marine’s Hymn.”

LOOK WHO’S TALKING (1989, Columbia TriStar, PG-13) During the opening, Kirstie Alley submits to George Segal’s advances. The credits break and the screen becomes an intrauterine dreamscape with computer-animated flagella flailing to the smooth surf rock of the Beach Boys’ ”I Get Around.”

You May Like