Indonesia sets protectionist tax that may see an end to Hollywood cinema imports
See article from thejakartapost.com
Indonesians are fighting to keep Hollywood films in local theatres after warnings that a new tax on foreign-made movies could lead to studios pulling out of the country.
Indonesian authorities see the tax as a way to protect the domestic film
Hollywood as represented by the MPAA has responded that the release of Oscar-nominated Black Swan could be the last for a Hollywood film in this nation of 237 million. Distributors from Europe and Asia have made similar warnings.
Film-lovers have taken to social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter to complain, while the country's largest cinema chain begged for the government to drop the tax.
We'll see theatres close one by one unless a solution is found,
warned Noorca Massardie, spokesman of 21 Cineplex, which has more than 500 screens.
It's outrageous! one woman wrote on Facebook. They're taking away our right to watch high-quality films. She noted that domestic industry, still
in its infancy stage, leaves much to be desired.
Minister of Culture Jero Wacik said the tax will be reviewed with a final decision expected in two weeks.
Offsite: The Ghost of Cinema Past
11th June 2011.
The Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) stopped distributing films to Indonesia in February after the Indonesian
government introduced a new system of calculating and charging royalties on imported films.
I'm sick and bored of not being able to watch good movies in the cinema, said Marisca Djojopranoto, a 25-year-old a film lover in Jakarta: I miss
the cinema so much .
Movie fans are not the only ones lamenting the absence of Hollywood films on the big screen. Cinemas are losing between 40 and 50% of their revenues, said Djonny Sjafruddin, chairman of the Indonesian Cinema Operator
We are just showing what we have and what we have are films about ghosts, Sjafruddin said: It's a major blow for the cinemas and if this continues, many of them may fold, he said, adding that some theatres had reduced
screening frequencies and the number of studios used.
Locally produced films, mostly of the horror genre with bizarre titles such as In the Embrace of the Teen Ghost's Widow and Dancing Karawang Ghost, have taken over at the box office. Such
films don't cost a lot to produce and they can make a little profit, Sjafruddin said.
The King's Speech now available in a muted PG-13 version
Thanks to Nick
Based on article
See also article from
The has assigned a PG-13 rating to an alternative version of The King's Speech in which, a source said: the 'fucks' that earned it an R rating have been muted out.
The MPAA said it also has waived a rule that requires the distributor to
fully withdraw the original version of the film from theaters for 90 days before replacing it with an alternative.
Black Swan banned by the film censors of Barbados
22nd February 2011. From caribbean360.com
Barbados' Film Censorship Board is taking another look at the award winning film, Black Swan , after initially banning it last week in a move that triggered an appeal by one cinema and sparked a petition by disappointed movie goers and other
The Board will decide this week, after another screening, whether Barbadians will get to see the film in cinemas after all.
The Board instituted the ban deeming the film inappropriate for viewing because of offensive sexual
behaviour. The movie features a scene depicting a lesbian encounter.
Barbados is just one of two countries that have banned Black Swan , the other being the United Arab Emirates. It has been rated R in most other countries.
ban was announced, the Olympus Theatres filed an appeal and the Film Censorship Board agreed to review the movie.
An online petition, Against the Affront to Freedom of Expression in Barbados by the Barbados Board of Film Censors , and a
Facebook group entitled For Freedom of Thought and Expression in Barbados have been gaining momentum and had reached 247 signatures and 459 members, respectively, by this morning.
The online petition makes several demands of the Film
Censorship Board, including that it reverse its decision to restrict freedom of expression by banning the film ; understand the meanings and intent of MPAA film ratings (or the rating from the films originating country), that is, to inform parents
on the suitability of a film for viewing by children, and to protect artistic freedom; refrain from changing a films rating; and hold a limited screening of films to unbiased members of the public and rely on their input before pronouncing a ban. The
The Barbados Board of Film Censors chose to censor this film, without any discussion about its content with the public, and subsequently failing to publish adequately explained reasons behind its
decision. We believe that freedom of expression is a key pillar in a democratic society, and when leaders choose to censor material without consulting the public, particularly artistic material which may be of cultural significance, our whole society
Indeed, in this case, it is patronizing that the board doesn't think that Barbadians can handle a film that has won such prestigious awards, and that people the world over are enjoying...Banning art sets
a dangerous precedent, which encourages those around the world who wish to restrict freedom of expression.
24th February 2011.
The Barbados film censorship board has
reversed a decision to ban the cinema release of Black Swan over its sexual and violent content.
The Cinematograph Film Censorship Board reviewed its decision after a theatre filed an appeal. The board has announced that the movie will now
be shown with an "R'' rating.
Producer of genre classics from Blood Feast to Ilsa: She-Wolf of the SS
See article from nytimes.com
David F. Friedman, a film producer who cheerfully and cheesily exploited an audience's hunger for bare-breasted women and blood-dripping corpses in lucrative low-budget films like Blood Feast and Ilsa: She-Wolf of the S.S. , died
on Monday in Alabama aged 87 from heart failure.
Friedman plumbed the low-rent depths of the movie business with a sense of boldness and a sense of fun. In the early 1960s he and a partner, the director Herschell Gordon Lewis, made a handful of
films in a genre known as nudie-cuties, in which young women would perform ordinary household tasks or cavort in sun-dappled settings half-dressed or entirely undressed.
In 1963, Friedman and Lewis made the gleefully gore-soaked Blood Feast
, considered by many to be a groundbreaking film in the horror genre, the first so-called splatter film. It tells the story of a murderous Egyptian caterer in Miami who is especially fond of decapitating women. To promote the film, Friedman
warned viewers that it might be sickening and supplied theaters with airline vomit bags to distribute to customers. Made for $24,500, the film reportedly earned millions.
Friedman and Lewis followed Blood Feast with two other gore fests
that are exemplars of their ilk: Two Thousand Maniacs! , which takes place in a Southern town during a Civil War centennial celebration in which the townspeople take their revenge for losing the war on visiting Yankees; and Color Me
Blood Red , about a painter who gets his distinctive reds from the blood of his murder victims.
Friedman made films in the soft-porn vein --- they had titles like Trader Hornee and The Erotic Adventures of Zorro --- and
eventually, while serving as chairman of the Adult Film Association, made a handful of hard-core movies as well.
Perhaps his most famous title was Ilsa: She-Wolf of the S.S. , about a sadistic and insatiable female Nazi prison guard,
generally considered a camp classic of sexploitation.
Another tragic finale
See article from
French actress Maria Schneider, best known for her role in Last Tango in Paris , has died in Paris aged 58 after a long illness.
Born in 1952 in Paris, Schneider was the daughter of French actor Daniel Gelin. She began her film career
in uncredited roles before being given her first break in 1970 film Madly .
Last Tango in Paris provoked such controversy that the actress resolved never to do nude scenes again. Yet she was briefly seen naked three years later in
Jack Nicholson film The Passenger , albeit in long shot. She was last seen on the big screen in 2008 French film Cliente , about a married construction worker who leads a double life as a gigolo.
The actress was 19 when she was cast
opposite Brando in Bernardo Bertolucci's iconic censor challenging drama of 1972. The film was banned in several countries due to its buttery content. In Britain the film was passed X after 10s of cuts for its 1973 cinema release
- The BBFC originally demanded 20s of cuts to include edits for language but these were successfully appealed by the director. In the end a 10s shot of Paul putting his fingers between Jeanne's buttocks was censored from the sodomy scene.
BBFC was also concerned about a scene of sexual dialogue, but decided that it could not be cut without damaging the film.
See case study from sbbfc.co.uk : Obscenity Prosecution
The Festival of Light, a pro-censorship pressure group, started a concerted campaign to prevent the film reaching British cinema screens, circulating copies of the script to MPs and writing to local authorities - with considerable
success, since several dozen banned it.
However, it received favourable write ups from the film critics and played unopposed in most areas.
Events took an unprecedented turn, however, when Edward Shackleton, a
Salvation Army member, brought a private prosecution against the film's distributors for publishing obscene material. The case ultimately collapsed when it was found that the Obscene Publications Act (OPA) did not apply to film.
'Exorcist' spews green bilge about demonic possession all in the name of movie hype
An American exorcist has blamed the internet for rising numbers of young people who say they are possessed by the Devil.
Websites dedicated to the occult, witchcraft, Tarot cards, psychics and séances were increasingly exposing young
people to demonic influences, claimed Fr Gary Thomas.
The priest, whose story has just been made into a major Hollywood film, The Rite starring Sir Anthony Hopkins, claimed that pornography and drug abuse were also doorways to
harassment by evil spirits.
He said there were no statistics on how many people might be possessed but said there was a definite increase:
What I can tell you is that there are more and more
Catholics involved in idolatrous and pagan practices. That's really why there's more demonic activity. There's the absence of God in the lives of a lot of people.
A lot of parents today have no critical eye of faith
with which to even recognise the dangers their children are in. A lot of this is going on with the internet. There are lots and lots of demonic websites.
A demon doesn't show up. He has to be invited in … The
involvement in pagan, satanic, or occult practices are the classical ways.
Pornography is a doorway. But addictions of any kind can be – not are, but can be – a doorway, but it's coupled with other things.
For instance, drug use alone isn't going to invite the demonic in, but coupled with the occult it could.
The Rite will be released in Britain on February 25.
Uttering 'bullshit' helps King's Speech director get over his censorship impediment
Thanks to Nick
It's been prize winning week for the movie King's Speech , but producer Harvey Weinstein is now considering cutting the film to PG-13 to broaden the audience.
At issue is a series of 'fucks', uttered by Colin Firth playing King George
VI, as he attempts to overcome his stutter.
Director Tom Hooper says he doesn't support cutting the film ...BUT... he said that it might be bleeped.
Speaking to EW, Tom Hooper said,
wouldn't support cutting the film in any way. I think we looked at whether it's possible to bleep out the f—s and stuff, but I'm not going to actually cut that part.
He said that no final decision has been made about
creating a PG-13 friendly edit, but reiterated: I'm not going to cut the film.
Co-star Helena Bonham Carter said:
I don't think it needs to be cut down. I think every 13-year-old knows [the words], I
think every 8-year-old [does]. It's the whole point of it. It's not to be offensive. I think they said they were going to put the bleeps.
Political pressures lead to a German block on a Turkish film said to show Israel in a bad light
27th January 2011. See article from
The Turkish film series Valley of the Wolves is not known for its delicacy. Now, distribution of the most recent movie in the series has been blocked in Germany.
The Valley of the Wolves formula is simple: Turks are honorable and
courageous; action hero Polat Alemdar, played by Turkish movie star Necati Amazbased, can do no wrong; Americans are suspect; and Israelis are inhuman and brutal.
The newest installment, Valley of the Wolves Palestine, is based on the
Israeli attack on the Mavi Marmara, the Turkish aid ship carrying pro-Palestinian activists to Gaza in May 2010, which resulted in the deaths of nine Turks on board the ship.
Of particular political concern are allegations that Israel and Israelis
are portrayed negatively in the film. Furthermore, the planned release date of Jan. 27, which is International Holocaust Remembrance Day, is seen as insensitive.
To release a film like this on such an important day of remembrance is beyond
tasteless and insensitive to the feelings of the victims, said German parliamentarian Philipp Missfelder, a member of Chancellor Angela Merkel's Christian Democrats (CDU).
Kerstin Griese, a German parliamentarian with the center-left Social
Democrats, called the movie problematic, because it glorifies violence and anti-Israeli sentiment.
This has proven too much for Germany's film censorship board, the FSK which has so far refused to grant the film an age rating certificate,
which automatically places it in the adult category. German law forbids adult-rated films from being marketed using posters and other forms of public advertising.
The film board will meet again on Thursday to review the decision.
Update: Passed 18
28th January 2011. Based on article from
Germany's FSK film censors passed Turkish film Kurtlar Vadisi: Filistin (Valley of the Wolves: Palestine) with an adults only rating.
The distribuotrs, Pera, said that it can be shown immediately but it wasn't immediately clear that it was
shown on Thursday – International Holocaust Remembrance Day. Austrian cinemas did show show it on the day as planned with a self imposed 18 rating..
FSK issued a statement saying that children under the age of 18 are not permitted to see the
film. They added that Valley of the Wolves contains propaganda tendencies and repetitive violence.
The film cost $10 million to make, making it the most expensive in Turkish cinematic history.
from the Green Party and the Christian Social Union criticized the film this week. Philipp Missfelder, a member of the ruling Christian Democratic Party, said it disrespects victims of the Holocaust, and Jerzy Montag of the Green Party called the movie
Pakistan bans British made film set in Islamabad for swearing and drinking
See article from
See also article from
Slackistan is a 2010 UK drama by hammad khan...
Starring Aisha Linnea Akthar, Rafey Alam and Osman Khalid Butt
Islamabad, Pakistan. A group of privileged and
westernised twenty-something friends while away their days and nights driving around town, partying, surfing the internet and smoking shisha pipes. As the country outside their world starts to crack, Hasan and his friends must face up to their
relationships, angst and life choices before it is too late.
Slackistan , a British-made movie about young people living in Islamabad, has been banned in Pakistan because of scenes showing swearing and drinking.
Guardian notes the contentious issues as: the words 'Taliban' and 'lesbian', swear words in English and Urdu, scenes showing characters drinking (filmed with fake alcohol, incidentally) and a joke about beards (as in "my beard is longer than your
beard") made between characters talking hypothetically about a fancy dress party. These are not the CBFC's only objections, but the main ones it highlighted.
Its director, London-based Hammad Khan, has told the BBC he is refusing to make
changes demanded by Pakistan's Central Board of Film Censors (CBFC).
The CBFC also called for religious references to be taken out.
The low-budget film follows the young Pakistanis as they spend their time dating, drinking and going to
parties despite attacks on their city by militants linked to al-Qaeda and the Taliban.
US distributor considers a cut version of the The King's Speech
The LA Times is reporting that the film distributor Weinstein is contemplating editing The King's Speech in order to get its R-rating reduced to PG-13 and so increase the market able to see it.
The reason that the film was given the
restricted label in the first place is because of MPAA inflexibility over a scene in which King George VI spurts out numerous curse words in order to help him get over his stutter.
The film was originally rated 15 in the UK, but the BBFC were
asked to think again, and the film now has a 12 rating allowing it to be seen by a family audience. And successful it has been too.
This is a terrible, terrible idea. As far as I know, there is no difference between the cut being shown in British theaters vs. US theaters, meaning that this isn't a problem of content, but rather an issue of
bullshit standards and qualifications by the MPAA. This would perhaps be understandable if we still lived in the 1920s, but I've personally never met a 13 year old kid who is completely unaware of the existence of words like fuck and shit.
A Serbian Film allegory extends to Northampton Blockbuster
Thanks to Simon
On Friday 21st January 2011 the Police raided an unsuspecting Blockbuster in Northampton upon receiving a complaint from a 'distressed' viewer and seized copies of the film despite the BBFC rating on the front and the content warning in large letters
on the back.
The police with their usual, the complainant is always right, attitude didn't check with the BBFC before raiding the store for a perfectly legal film.
Blockbuster has now withdrawn the film from it's catalogue pending
consultation with their lawyers.
Northamptonshire police sent dogatemywookie.co.uk the statement:
We received information from a member of the public that a copy of The Serbian Film at a branch of
Blockbusters in Northampton contained images of child abuse.
We have a duty to investigate such claims and in agreement with the manager of the shop took a copy away to view and check that it was the edition that has
been approved by the British Board of Film Classification for distribution.
It has been established as a legitimate copy of the film that has been approved for distribution by the BBFC and so is being returned to the
Film Festival director offered chance to give to charity to avoid conviction for showing banned film
Melbourne Film Festival director Richard Wolstencroft says he is now considering his options, in the latest instalment of a saga over the screening of a banned film.
In August 2010, Wolstencroft organised a screening of Bruce LaBruce's LA
Zombie . In November, police raided his house, looking for copies of the film, and a police spokeswoman confirmed that he would face court.
In the latest development Wolstencroft said:.
Last Thursday, I
was informed that I had a summons to pick up at my local police station. Attached to the summons was a diversion notice, agreeing to settle the matter without a felony on my record and with a donation to charity.
said that he was thinking through the implications of the diversion notice, which is a procedure intended to divert mainly first-time offenders from the criminal justice system.
25th February 2011.
See article from business.avn.com
Since then, the legal system began its slow work, and Wolstencroft was recently ordered by a court to give $750 to Melbourne's Royal Children's Hospital, reported ABC News.
Hyped by the Daily Mail, closely watched by the BBFC
There were major problems with the British film censors over Killer Bitch . We were told the BBFC was very concerned at the content of the movie and it was screened at least four times to various combinations of
censors, eventually including the Chairman of the Board. I suspect it was just a case of a movie with a high-profile tabloid reputation being referred-up because each person was too scared to take the risk of passing it himself/herself…. At one
point, a BBFC Examiner sent an e-mail to the UK distributor saying it was more likely than not that there would be several cuts.
I was amazed when I found out what they claimed the problem was. We were told
there were two areas of concern:
The first was a glimpse of part of the erect shaft of porn star Ben Dover's penis at the beginning of the movie. This gobsmacked me. Apart from the fact neither the director nor I had
ever noticed this and the censors must have gone through it frame by frame with a magnifying glass (no reflection on Ben Dover), I have still never spotted the offending shot in the movie.
The second problem was the
scene which had got the tabloids worldwide into such a tizzy when (without ever having seen it) they had denounced it as a ghastly and vile rape scene. What the BBFC was worried about was not the actual sex scene itself (which was not a rape scene
at all) but the pre-amble to the sex scene, in which leading lady Yvette Rowland initially resists Alex Reid then melts in his arms.
There IS a rape scene in Killer Bitch (which in no way glamorises nor diminishes the
horror but it is not the scene the tabloids got into a tizz about). And someone DOES get his cock cut off in vision. But apparently neither of these scenes worried the censors.
What seems to have worried them was the
movie's reputation. It worried everyone. It was, ironically, passed uncut by the BBFC, but banned from display on the shelves of ASDA, Morrison's, Sainsbury, WH Smith, Tesco and others (although most of those sell it online). It was even withdrawn by
iTunes after two days on sale for rather vague reasons. HMV remained a sole beacon of high street retail sanity and online retailers like Amazon and Play.com never had any problem.
...Read the full
Egyptian film censor wound up by the presence of an Israeli actress on the cast list
See article from
Doug Liman's Fair Game – about the outing of CIA operative Valerie Plame by the George W. Bush Administration – is earning Oscar buzz for stars Naomi Watts and Sean Penn.
But Israeli actress Liraz Charhi also stands out for
her pivotal, heartbreaking turn as Zahraa, an Iraqi expatriate whose fate devastates the tough ex-spy Plame.
However the presence of Liraz Charhi is causing a bit of censor hassle in Egypt.
Egyptian censors have delayed the screening of Fair Game
for at least a week while the consider their stance.
Sayyed Khattab, head of Egypt's censorship board, said that he liked the movie but feared the presence of an Israeli actress.
Dubai bans new movies Black Swan and Love and Other Drugs
See article from
The Dubai film censor has confirmed that Darren Aronofsky's latest movie Black Swan will not be shown in the emirate due to its subject matter.
Movies have to pass through the Censorship Department for approval, editing or banning
before they are released in theatres, and Mohammad Naser, the cinema censor said: When we find that the amount of editing required takes a big part of the movie, we conclude that there is no point in releasing it.
Naser added that Love
and Other Drugs would also not be making it to cinemas: Both these movies have been banned because of excessive sexual content, he said, adding that in one of the two films the viewer would have been left with 25% of the film had it been
released after editing.
Daniela Yordanova of 20th Century Fox for the Middle East said that both films will be released in other Middle Eastern markets such as Lebanon.
Black Swan has been passed 15 uncut by the BBFC noting: Contains strong sex, language and bloody images.
Love and Other Drugs has also been passed 15 uncut by the BBFC noting: Contains strong sex, sex references and language
Dario Argento's Deep Red passed uncut for the first time
Based on article from
See also article from
Deep Red is a 1975 Italian Giallo by Dario Argento. See IMDb
The film makers managed to convince the BBFC that the lizard's death
was faked with a false pin.
Passed 18 uncut with BBFC cuts waived for:
Previously cut for the Italian Language Version submitted for
From cuts details on IMDb :
- The DVD is slightly re-framed (to exclude the lizard scene) and restores the dog sequence, as it seems likely that they are playing rather than fighting.
And before that the BBFC cut the Italian Version by 11s for:
The BBFC cuts were:
- A 7s shot of a squirming lizard being impaled with a pin has been deleted. This cut also impacts the scene. A father slaps his little daughter because of the impaling. In the cut version, a now motiveless slap remains.
4s has been cut from a scene showing two dogs fighting
Review from UK Amazon : Initiation into
I didn't know what to expect with Profondo Rosso , I thought "maybe something like Halloween ", but this is a gorgeous film in it's own right, it is rich in content and thought, it
has an old school story telling feel about it, fantastic music by "Goblin" it is shocking and suspenseful, whilst showing some glorious cinematography (Luigi Keveiller).
One scene involving a mechanical doll, nearly made my heart stop,
I wont give it away but it's one of those scares that makes your brain work overtime to reassure you that you're ok !
Brilliant, Dario is unique and this is my favourite film of his, and one of my ALL time favourite films.
initiation into the world of Giallo.