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 Diary: Celebrating the films of John Carpenter...

June on Horror Channel

Link Here 15th June 2018

Christine Blu-ray Saturday nights on Horror Channel at 9pm in June will be devoted to John Carpenter, one of the true Masters of Horror.

The celebratory season is highlighted by the network premieres of Carpenter's classic car-rage chiller Christine , with the superb Harry Dean Stanton, and John Carpenter's Vampires , a horror Western starring James Woods, as a vengeful, stake-wielding bloodsucker hunter. It also includes iconic favourite The Fog , the high-kicking fantasy thriller Big Trouble in Little China and his timely sci-fi political thriller They Live .


  Brawl in Cell Block 99...

Already released 18 uncut for cinema and home video but now a 15 rated version has just been passed by the BBFC with cuts for category

Link Here 14th June 2018
Brawl In Cell Block 99 Blu-ray Brawl in Cell Block 99 is a 2017 USA action crime thriller by S Craig Zahler.
Starring Jennifer Carpenter, Vince Vaughn and Tom Guiry. BBFC link IMDb

A former boxer-turned-drug runner lands in a prison battleground after a deal gets deadly.

The BBFC has just passed  a video with a 15 rating for strong violence, threat, language, injury detail, sex and drug references after 44s of BBFC category cuts with some cuts substituted for:

  • 2018 Universal video

The DVD and Blu-ray has already be released in uncut 18 rated DVD and Blu-ray form. It is not yet clear where this cut 15 rated version will be used.

The BBFC commented:
  • Distributor chose to reduce or remove moments of stronger. sadistic violence and injury detail in order to achieve a 15 classification. An uncut 18, in line with previous versions of the work, was available.


  Kiss of box office death...

Irish distributors unsuccessfully appeal against an 18 rating for the cinema release of Kissing Candace

Link Here 13th June 2018
Poster Kissing Candice 2017 Aoife Mcardle Kissing Candice is a 2017 Ireland / UK drama by Aoife McArdle.
Starring Ann Skelly, Ryan Lincoln and Conall Keating. IMDb

17 year old Candice longs to escape her seaside town and finds solace in her imagination. When her disillusionment calcifies into an obsession with a troubled stranger, she becomes entangled with a dangerous local gang.

THE Irish Film Classification Office (IFCO) has upheld an 18 rating for an Irish film by a debut director Aoife McArdle despite the film being given a 15 rating in the UK.

Kissing Candice is a youth oriented film about a young girl in a border town who first dreams of and then meets a young boy who's connected to a gang that is terrorising her town.

The film premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival and has been shown at other youth-orientated festivals.

Wildcard Distribution is the Irish distributor for the film and its managing director Patrick O'Neill has said that the company was surprised when it was given an 18 cert:

We just thought the rating was a little harsh for the film, we just thought something along the lines of a 15A or a 16 would have been more in keeping with the content of the film.

IFCO's 18 rating has the consumer advice:  contains scenes of strong drugs abuse, strong violence and language and strong sex references.

The UK's BBFC was less severe in its rating of the film, giving it an uncut 15 rating for  very strong language, strong threat, drug misuse.

Kissing Candice is released in Irish cinemas on 22 June


  Digging a hole for themselves...

Insidious: The Last Key trailer found to be unsuitable to show before Minecraft, Frozen and Lego videos on YouTube

Link Here 13th June 2018

Insidious: The Last Key DVD Two pre-roll ads seen on YouTube in late December 2017 and early January 2018 for the 15-rated (PG-13 rated in the US) horror film, Insidious: The Last Key . Both ads featured a number of scenes in quick succession and tense sound effects:

  • a. The ad opened with a shot of a house in the dark and then showed a young woman walking through it. She was shown looking at some medical instruments on a table before being thrown backwards by a force. She was then depicted lying on the floor screaming whilst a humanoid creature with claw-like fingers probed at her throat. Further scenes included a creature hanging upside down, the same woman screaming on a hospital bed and a clawed hand emerging from a sleeve. Another female character said, People who need help with hauntings come to me, but this house is my family's house. I'm going to find it and I'm going to finish it. In the final scenes of the ad a male character said, Lisa there's someone right in front of you. Lisa replied, I don't see anything. A hand was shown reaching out to her in the dark and then a sudden shot of a grinning creature with fanged teeth was shown next to a woman.

The ad was seen before a video of songs from Frozen, a video about how to build a Lego fire station and a video of the children's cartoon PJ Masks.

  • b. The ad opened with a young woman lying on a floor immobile, bloodied and distressed while a humanoid creature crept towards her and then probed at her with claw-like fingers and pierced her skin. At the same time another female character said, People with matters that can't be explained, come to me. But this one is different. This was my family's house. A male character than stated, I'm going to count back from five, four, three, two and a number of brief scenes were shown, including a woman's eyeballs turning to white, a huddled female figure on the floor in the dark, a woman lying on a bed screaming and a screaming woman appearing and then disappearing behind someone. In the final scene of the ad a woman was shown slowly opening a suitcase and a creature suddenly leapt from it.

The ad was seen before two Minecraft videos.

The ASA received five complaints, three of which were from parents who said their children saw the ads and two from adults who said they had found the ads distressing. They objected that:

  1. the ads were irresponsibly targeted because they were seen before videos which were of appeal to children; and

  2. the ads were unduly distressing.

Columbia Pictures Corporation Ltd t/a Sony Pictures Releasing UK said they had targeted the ads on YouTube to an adult audience, by excluding audiences below 18 years and preventing the ads being shown before content with unknown audiences. They said their agency had also added a layer of safety by using further YouTube targeting, including content exclusions such as content that was suitable for families, over 1,000 negative keywords exclusions including keywords with appeal to children, over 40 negative topic exclusions including religion, politics, news and children's content, and they opted out of all display network content to ensure they had control over websites and apps with audiences aged under 18 years.

YouTube said that advertisers administered their own campaigns, and were responsible for determining the appropriate targeting, and could control what types of users saw their campaigns and against what types of content they did not want their campaigns to appear. They said advertisers could target specific demographics, excluding anyone who was not logged-in with a declared or inferred age of over-18.

ASA Assessment: Complaints upheld

1. & 2. Upheld

The ads were for a 15-rated horror film and featured a series of clips from the film. The ASA recognised the complainants' concerns that both ads were seen before content on YouTube with particular appeal or interest to children, including videos of songs from Frozen, of the cartoon PJ Masks and videos relating to Minecraft and Lego. We considered that the ads were unsuitable for children because they were excessively frightening and shocking, and were likely to cause fear and distress, most notably the scenes with the woman on the floor screaming and in distress while the humanoid creature approached her and clawed at her throat, and in which the creature's face appeared suddenly.

We noted that three complainants also believed the ads were unduly distressing for adults and two stated that they had suffered particular distress from viewing the ads. We understood that ad (b) had been cleared for TV with a post 11 pm scheduling restriction by Clearcast, which indicated that it contained the strongest allowable content of a graphic or distressing nature for TV. Ad (b) featured in particular a close-up shot of the humanoid creature's claw piercing the woman's throat, and built suspense with sound effects and screaming, and a voice-over countdown, at the end of which a creature suddenly jumped out of a suitcase. We considered that ad (a), although slightly less graphic, contained a similar level of frightening content. Furthermore, both ads contained other content which was shocking in nature. Several scenes featured the sudden appearance of the creature's face or a woman with white eyeballs, together with tense sound effects.

We considered that the ads may have been appropriate to show before limited content on YouTube with similar themes and imagery that was intended for adults. However, when seen by the complainants the ads were juxtaposed against unrelated content such as Minecraft videos. They also were not skippable until five seconds into the ads and did not contain any warning regarding their content. We therefore considered that the ads, in that context, were likely to cause excessive fear or distress for some adults without justifiable reason, because they were unexpectedly shocking and frightening.

We understood that Sony Pictures Releasing UK had identified and restricted the YouTube content before which the ads should not be shown, in particular putting in place topical and demographic exclusions on content with appeal to children or with unknown audiences. However, the ads had appeared before various videos that were highly likely to be of appeal or interest to children, and we noted that one of the complainants viewed ad (b) when they were not signed in to YouTube. The ads were also likely to be unduly distressing to some adults in the context in which they appeared. For those reasons, we concluded that the ads had not been targeted appropriately and were likely to cause undue distress, and therefore were in breach of the Code.

We told Sony Pictures Releasing UK to ensure that future ads that were unsuitable for viewing by children were appropriately targeted, and that similar future ads were targeted appropriately to ensure they did not cause undue distress to their likely audience without justifiable reason.


 Offsite Article: Fake news...

Link Here 12th June 2018
New York State seal Hollywood is not impressed by a New York State bill banning deep fakes on the grounds they like to do a little deep fakery themselves

See article from


 Offsite Article: BBFC Podcast Episode 83...

Link Here 11th June 2018
Wonder Woman DVD Wonder Woman and Avengers Infinity War

See article from


 Diary: Frightfest...

23rd - 27th August 2018, Leicester Square, London

Link Here 10th June 2018

frightfest 2018 Frightfest
23rd - 27th August 2018
Prince Charles + Cineworld, Leicester Square, London

Arrow Video FrightFest 2018 is delighted to present Graham Humphreys' stunning artwork for this year's annual Bank Holiday event, the UK's largest celebration of genre cinema, taking place at Cineworld Leicester Square and The Prince Charles Cinema between Thurs Aug 23 & Mon Aug 27, 2018.

For Graham, celebrating the 200th anniversary of Mary Shelley's Frankenstein seemed too important to ignore:



 Updated: Love, Simon...

Gay teen romance banned by India's film censors

Link Here 10th June 2018  full story: Banned Movies in India...Sex, religion and easy offence
Love, Simon DVD Love, Simon is a 2018 USA gay drama by Greg Berlanti.
Starring Katherine Langford, Nick Robinson and Jennifer Garner. BBFC link IMDb
From the producers of The Fault in Our Stars comes the relatable and heartfelt coming-of-age film LOVE, SIMON. Everyone deserves a great love story, but for 17-year-old Simon, it's a bit complicated. The gay teenager hasn't come out yet, and doesn't know the identity of the anonymous classmate he's fallen for online. Resolving both issues will be a hilarious, scary, life-changing adventure.

The film was banned by the film censors of the Central Board of Film Certification on the day of its release. The CBFC has said little so far beyond noting that the film was banned for gay content.

The film contains no explicit content although there is a kiss between the two lads.

In the UK the cinema release was passed 12A uncut for moderate sex references, infrequent strong language.

In the US the film was rated PG-13 for thematic elements, sexual references, language and teen partying

Update: Film censor says that the ban is not down to him

10th June 2018. See  article from

CBFC chairperson Prasoon Joshi has completely denied that the CBFC has banned on Love, Simon. He said that an adults-only CBFC 'A' certificate has been given to Love, Simon four months ago, on February 6, 2018 after 2 cuts described as minor.

Another source from the CBFC says, This is one more attempt to use the censor board to gain publicity for a film.

However it is has not been made clear an alternative reason for the film being pulled from cinema s at the last moment.


 Offsite Article: The world of film censors...

Link Here 9th June 2018
film ratings array Detailed report on how film censors are moving with the times

See article from


 Offsite Article: Season of the Witch...

Link Here 7th June 2018
Season Of The Witch Blu-ray A in-depth look at several versions of George Romero's film, originally titled Jack's Wife

See article from


 Updated: The dog's bollocks...

The children's film Show Dogs falls victim in the US to the dirty minds of Morality in Media. The BBFC doesn't concur and the film will be screened uncut in the UK

Link Here 5th June 2018  full story: Morality in Media...Misreable campaigners for censorship
show dogsShow Dogs is a 2018 USA comedy by Raja Gosnell.
Starring Stanley Tucci, Natasha Lyonne and Will Arnett. BBFC link IMDb

Max, a macho, solitary Rottweiler police dog is ordered to go undercover as a primped show dog in a prestigious Dog Show, along with his human partner, to avert a disaster from happening.

The studio behind new family comedy Show Dogs has agreed to a last-minute edit in response to morality groups and bloggers claiming that the film might suggest to children that sexual molestation is something that should be silently endured.

Global Road Entertainment have now confirmed they would be cutting two scenes that some have deemed not appropriate for children. The scenes in question are thought to involve Max, a police rottweiler who has his genitals groped by cop Will Arnett as part of his training to go undercover at dog shows. Initially, Max is upset by the intrusion, but is instructed to go to a zen place. Global Road said:

The company takes these matters very seriously and remains committed to providing quality entertainment for the intended audiences based on the film's rating. We apologise to anybody who feels the original version of Show Dogs sent an inappropriate message. The revised version of the film will be available for viewing nationwide starting this weekend.

In the US, Morality in the Media, now going by the name National Center on Sexual Exploitation, flagged the film for the similarity of tactics used with Max and abusers grooming children, telling them to pretend they are somewhere else and that they will get a reward for withstanding the discomfort.

In the UK, the film was seen by the BBFC some weeks ago and was passed PG uncut. The UK and Irish distributors intend to stick with the BBFC/IFCO approved uncut version. A spokesman for Entertainment One said:

We are taking the BBFC/IFCO guidance on this matter in the UK and Ireland and will be releasing the original version that has been censored and reviewed.

The BBFC said in a statement that:

The scenes in question are entirely innocent and non-sexual and occur within the clear context of preparation for and judging in a dog show. We regard the comments made about the film as suggesting 'grooming' as a misinterpretation of the scenes in question.

Meanwhile in New Zealand, Chief Censor David Shanks made the unusual decision to call the film in for review following a number of complaints. Normally, films rated G or PG arrive in New Zealand without requiring a localised classification. Shanks said in a statement:

We understand the film's distributors are currently re-editing this film in response to public concern. We can confirm that the version distributed in New Zealand will be classified, regardless of any edits made prior to release, the office said in a statement.

Update: Resubmitted to the MPAA

30th May 2018. See  article from

In the latest rating bulletin, the MPAA have confirmed that the film has been resubmitted after cuts.

It has again been PG rated for suggestive and rude humor, language and some action.

Update: Collective Shout recommends Show Dogs and kindly details the US cuts

5th June 2018. See  article from

collective shout logoOpen Letter to Australian Cinemas: Don't screen Show Dogs movie

We are writing to you in regards to the children's film Show Dogs, due for release 5 July. Upon its release in the US, it attracted substantial criticism from parents and child advocates over concerns of grooming children for sexual abuse.

The film tells the story of a police dog going undercover at a dog show. There are reportedly several scenes in which the dog, Max, has to have his genitals inspected. When he is uncomfortable and wants to stop he is told to go to a zen place. When he submits and allows his genitals to be touched, he is rewarded by advancing to the next level of the show.

In response to the global backlash, the production company withdrew the film, promising to re-cut it to remove the scenes in question. The film has been re-released, however the scenes remain, with only the encouragement to go to a zen place (essentially, to dissociate) being removed. The meaning remains intact, that unwanted sexual touching is to be endured and may be rewarded.

The film sends a disturbing and dangerous message to children about sexual touching. In Australia, one in five children are thought to be victims of sexual abuse. This film undermines efforts in prevention and education to address the scourge of child sexual abuse.

Collective Shout: for a world free from sexploitation is calling on Australian cinemas to take a stand against child sexual abuse and refuse to screen the film. We hope that cinemas will be prepared to take a role of leadership in the community, to stand up for the rights of children and refuse to profit from this film.


  Veere Di Wedding...

Popular Indian female focus movie banned in Pakistan

Link Here 3rd June 2018
veere di weddingVeere Di Wedding is a 2018 India comedy by Shashanka Ghosh.
Starring Kareena Kapoor, Sonam Kapoor and Swara Bhaskar. IMDb

Four girls on their way to find true love. However friendship this strong does have its consequences.

A Bollywood chick flick titled Veere Di Wedding has been banned from airing in Pakistan, according to sources at the Central Board of Film Censors (CBFC).

Images reports that CBFC Chairman Danyal Gilani said: Members of the board have unanimously decided to not allow the film for public exhibition in the cinemas as per Censorship of Film Code 1980.

According to the Economic Times , the film has been banned due to its vulgar language. An official of the Censor Board added that the film also contained objectionable sexual dialogue.

Veere Di Wedding has done good business in India has become the third highest opening Bollywood film of 2018. The movie has also debuted in top 10 in countries like UK, Australia and New Zealand.

For the record the film was passed 15 uncut by the BBFC for strong language, sex references, sex. In India the film was given an adults only uncut 'A' rating by the CBFC.


 Extract: Video killed the censorship tsar...

When DVDs arrived in Ireland 20 years ago, they meant the end of the transformative era of the video cassette. Damian Corless recalls the magic of the VCR and the dawn of the video nasty

Link Here 3rd June 2018

the graduate...In common with the internet, this lightning take-up of VHS bypassed barriers built to meet the threat outlined by the Council of Irish Bishops in 1927. They warned:

The Evil One is ever setting his snares for unwary feet. At this moment his traps are chiefly the dance hall, the bad book, the indecent paper, the motion picture, the immodest fashion in female dress - all of which tend to destroy the virtuous characteristics of our race.

The Free State quickly appointed its first film censor, James Montgomery, who worked tirelessly to turn back the tide of foreign filth. Montgomery proudly boasted:

I know nothing about films but I do know the Ten Commandments.

And so it remained into modern times, with the Nanny State taking a firm hand in protecting the Irish people from themselves. While Dustin Hoffman and Anne Bancroft were being nominated for Oscars for The Graduate in 1968, Irish cinema audiences were watching a version in which the seduction scene between the two - the pivotal point on which the whole movie hinges - was ripped out to protect public morals.

...Read the full article from


  Left without a leg to stand on...

The BBFC puts the Guardian right about an article about cuts to real vs faked animal cruelty

Link Here 2nd June 2018
larsvontrier duckA letter to the Guardian responding to an article inspired by faked animal cruelty in Lars von Trier's upcoming The House That Jack Built:

Anne Billson asserts that the British Board of Film Classification (BBFC) still cuts non-faked animal abuse, although it is more lenient on arthouse than horror . The article goes on to cite Sátántangó (1994) and Oldboy (2003) as examples of our alleged leniency towards "arthouse" films, in contrast to our long history of intervention with The Mountain of the Cannibal God (1978) and Cannibal Ferox (1981). I am afraid this statement is incorrect and no preferential treatment is given to "arthouse" films.

Sátántangó was only classified uncut after we received detailed assurances from the film-makers regarding how the scenes with the cat were prepared and filmed in such a way as to avoid cruelty to the animal involved. Those assurances were consistent with the onscreen evidence. Oldboy was classified uncut because the Cinematograph Films (Animals) Act 1937, which is mentioned in the article, only applies to "protected animals" as defined by the Animal Welfare Act 2006. Currently invertebrates, such as octopuses, are not covered by the 2006 act and we therefore had no grounds on which to intervene.

By contrast, The Mountain of the Cannibal God and Cannibal Ferox both feature scenes of animal cruelty that are clearly real, that involve vertebrate animals and that certainly appear to have been deliberately orchestrated by the film-makers. Indeed, the makers of those films have confirmed that this is the case.


 Updated: Shooting from the hip...

Sesame Street sues puppet movie over reference to their characters

Link Here 31st May 2018
happytime murders Creators of Sesame Street are suing the production company behind The Happytime Murders, claiming the mainstream comedy that features ejaculating puppets and other sexual puppetry routines is appropriating its brand.

Sesame Workshop, creators of the kids show, alleges that the misuse of its brand is intent on confusing the public and infringes on it intellectual property rights. The company has initiated a lawsuit as a result of a trailer with explicit, profane, drug-using, misogynistic, violent, copulating and even ejaculating puppets, along with the tagline 'NO SESAME. ALL STREET'.

The Happytime Murders, set for an August, is a murder mystery revolving around puppets who exhibit raunchy behavior.

Update: Judge not impressed by Sesame Street claims

31st May 2018. See  article from

Manhattan federal Judge Vernon Broderick has rejected a request by the Sesame Workshop for a temporary retraining order to halt ads for the upcoming comedy Happytime Murders, including a YouTube trailer with the tagline, No Sesame. All Street.

Broderick ruled that the STX film -- directed by Brian Henson, the son of the late Jim Henson, whose Muppets have been central characters in the children's mainstay since its inception in 1969 -- was geared toward an entirely different audience than Sesame Street. He also found that the trailer's No Sesame. All Street tagline was intended to differentiate the raunchy adult film from the wholesome educational show featuring Big Bird and Oscar the Grouch. The judge added:

I find the use of the tagline to disclaim -- albeit in a short and pithy manner.


 Offsite Article: [CENSORED] was meant to celebrate freedom. Instead it exposes something darker...

Link Here 31st May 2018
censored sari braithwaite Sari Braithwaite watched all the scenes cut by Australian censors between 1958 and 1971. What she discovered she found deeply disturbing in a #MeToo sort of way

See article from


 Offsite Article: I, Daniel Blake...

Link Here 30th May 2018
I, Daniel Blake DVD Latest case from the BBFC archives simply notes that the word 'cunt' is not allowed in a 12 rated film

See article from


 Offsite Article: Killing baby Hitler...

Link Here 27th May 2018
deadpool 2 coming soon A Director's Cut is being prepared for home video releases of Deadpool 2

See article from


  Religious censors...

Indian sikhs form a film censor board and claim that films that feature the religion should get approval

Link Here 24th May 2018

akal takhtThe Akal Takht, the highest seat of authority of Sikhism in India, has formed a 21-member film censor board and claimed that its clearance will have to be taken before making any movie on the Sikh religion and culture. Giani Gurbachan Singh, the Akal Takht head claimed:

The decision was taken because of controversies over films on Sikh gurus and distortion of Sikh history in movies. Any film that plans to portray any sequence related to Sikh gurus, their kin and Sikh history will have to seek clearance from the Sikh Film Censor Board.

Over the past few years, the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee has been demanding that at least two of its members be included in the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC), India's official film censor.

Unlike the CBFC, which comes into play after a film is complete and before its release, the Sikh board has said its approval will have to be taken for the script of any feature film, documentary, animation and play based on the Sikh religion.


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