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2013: Oct-Dec

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Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues...

MPAA cuts for PG-13 and reports that the UK 15 rated cinema release is uncut

Link Here23rd December 2013
Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues is a 2013 USA comedy by Adam McKay.
With Will Ferrell, Christina Applegate and Paul Rudd. YouTube icon BBFC link IMDb

The US Theatrical Version was cut for an MPAA PG-13 rating for crude and sexual content, drug use, language and comic violence.

Hollywood website Collider asked Will Ferrell and David Koechner about the cuts that were made for an MPAA PG-13 rating:

  • Ferrell said that the crack scene was a battle, that's been augmented. Originally there was more footage and the shots were wider. Also the censors weren't impressed when Brian actually gives the recipe for crack on the air! Some of the missing footage can be seen in the British trailer, the Vials of Smiles.
  • The word vagina was said too many times in the 50 Greatest Vaginas in History. These had to be changed to "gina," "va-jay-jay".
  • There's a scene where Brian says "We can do stories on the amount of ejaculate on hotel duvets". This had to be changed to avoid use of the term term ejaculate .

Uncut in the UK?

As well as the comment that the UK trailer contains deleted footage, it is reported on Twitter that the UK cinema release contains footage that was cut in the US.

In the UK, the cinema release was passed 15 uncut for infrequent strong sex references and hard drug use. The BBFC Insight explained further:

There are infrequent strong visual and verbal sex references, including a scene in which a man graphically explains different types of condoms, and a scene in which a man explains in detail how to perform oral sex on a woman. The film also contains frequent comic sex references of a less detailed nature.

There is a scene in which men are seen smoking crack, which is comically presented as part of a news investigation. However, the men doing the smoking are subsequently arrested. There are also verbal references to drug use. There are occasional scenes showing adults drinking alcohol and a scene in which a man has a cigar in his mouth.

The film contains one use of strong language ('fuck'), as well as some milder bad language, including uses of wanker , dick , shit , bullshit , bastard , bloody , son of a bitch and asshole . There is also some discriminatory language and behavior, all of which is clearly disapproved of. In one scene, rival news teams engage in a comic mock battle with makeshift weapons. This includes some heavy blows, as well as comic sight of an arm being severed and an eyeball landing on a hockey stick. There is also a scene in which Ron is depressed and attempts to hang himself. The attempt fails and there is no detail.

More to Come

Director Adam McKay has previously said that the improvisational nature of the film has provides loads of alternative jokes. He is putting together another version with alternative dialogue.



Update: Doesn't Know When to Stop...

Nymphomaniac set for Volume 1 and 2 Director's Cuts and Producer's Cuts

Link Here22nd December 2013
Full story: Nymphomaniac...A film by Lars Von Trier
  Nymphomaniac: Volume 1 is a 2013 Denmark/Germany/France/Belgium/UK drama by Lars von Trier.
With Charlotte Gainsbourg, Stellan Skarsgård and Stacy Martin. YouTube icon IMDb

Danish filmmaker Lars von Trier has been steadily hyping content too shocking for mainstream audiences. Former child stars in hard-core sex scenes, and soon we will get a chance to check out the claims.

The Hollywood Reporter says that the prestigious Berlin Film Festival will play host to the world premiere of to the director's cut version of Nymphomaniac: Volume 1.

Nymphomaniac stars recurring von Trier leading lady Charlotte Gainsbourg as Joe, the self-confessed sex addict for which the drama is named. After being beaten and left for dead in the street, Joe is taken in by a kindly stranger. With him, she shares her life story, full of twisted trysts, casual sex, and serious kinks.

The initially reported plan was Nymphomaniac would be cut in two versions. One would be a (digitally faked) hardcore version The other would be a tamer version. However, Joe's odyssey of sexual adventure ballooned into a running time of over four hours, and from there talk switched from two versions of one film to two volumes divided by chapters.

The Wall Street Journal reports that In general, apart from scenes with oral sex, the onscreen activity is not as graphic as in adult fare (In addition, unlike in real porn, body doubles are used). Also, the film often portrays sex as a mechanical, unemotional act. Von Trier seems to want to show that appetite for sex is human, but that it also sometimes makes humans act inhuman.

Von Trier's cut clocked in at over five and a half hours long. From there, producers were looking to trim Nymphomaniac to four hours, and then split that running time in half for Volumes 1 & 2 . This trimmed producer's cut is what is expected to debut in Denmark on Christmas Day.

Those seeing Nymphomaniac in Berlin will be seeing the director's cut that those in the US and Denmark will see the Producer's Cut..

In the US, Nymphomaniac: Volume 1 will be On Demand March 6th with a limited theatrical release following on March 21st. Nymphomaniac: Volume 2 will make its way to On Demand by April 3rd, with its theatrical run following on April 18th.



For Homosexual References?...

Film makers unimpressed by being given an R rating for upcoming comedy G.B.F.

Link Here21st December 2013
G.B.F. is a 2013 USA comedy by Darren Stein.
With Natasha Lyonne, Evanna Lynch and Sasha Pieterse. IMDb

In G.B.F., social warfare erupts when three high school clique queens battle for supremacy: drama diva Caprice, Mormon princess 'Shley and blonde fashionista Fawcett. When unassuming Tanner is outted, he finds himself cast as the hottest new teen-girl accessory: The Gay Best Friend.

The MPAA rated the US comedy G.B.F. (gay best friend) as R for sexual references.

However, the film makers were targeting a PG-13. The film's director, Darren Stein, wrote in a Facebook post:

I always thought of G.B.F. as a PG-13 movie, Unfortunately, we were given an R 'For Sexual References' while not having a single F-bomb, hint of nudity or violence in the film. Perhaps the ratings box should more accurately read 'For Homosexual References' or 'Too Many Scenes of Gay Teens Kissing.'

I look forward to a world where queer teens can express their humor and desire in a sweet, fun teen film that doesn't get tagged with a cautionary R.

Screenwriter George Northy told Gawker:

I watch the shows Awkward and Glee and you can find pretty much around the same level of references, and those are TV-14. It's so silly when you really think about the MPAA in terms of how every 13-year-old in the country has seen hardcore pornography in this age of the Internet, and yet they can't go to a movie theater and see a movie like G.B.F. It would be funny if it weren't so sad.



Updated: A Crazed Attack on the Australian Film Censor...

South Australian politician asks film censor to review the 15 rating for the 2009 killing spree movie, Rampage

Link Here17th December 2013
Rampage is a 2009 Canada/Germany action crime horror by Uwe Boll.
With Brendan Fletcher, Shaun Sipos and Michael Paré. YouTube iconBBFC link IMDb

Summary Notes

A man with a thirst for revenge builds a full body armor from Kevlar and goes on a killing spree.

At the request of the censorial South Australian Attorney-General, John Rau, the Classification Review Board has received an application to review the classification of the film Rampage .

Rampage was classified MA 15+ with the consumer advice Strong violence by the Classification Board on 8 September 2009.

The Review Board will meet on 13 December 2013 to consider the application.

Presumably this review was for a MA 15+ being too lenient, the film was rated 18 in the UK with the consumer advice: Contains strong bloody violence.

Note: the MA15+ rating is a restricted rating that would be a 15A in UK terminology.

Update: Political interference rebuffed

17th December 2013. See  article from

A three-member panel of the Classification Review Board has unanimously determined that the film Rampage remains classified MA 15+ (Mature Accompanied) with the consumer advice Strong violence . The overall impact of the classifiable elements in the film was no higher than strong.

The Classification Review Board convened today in response to an application from the Minister, as requested by the South Australian Attorney-General, John Rau, to review the decision made by the Classification Board on 8 September 2009 to classify Rampage MA 15+ with the consumer advice ‘Strong violence’.



Obituary: Peter O'Toole...

Classic British actor dies aged 81

Link Here16th December 2013
 Actor Peter O'Toole, who starred in Sir David Lean's 1962 film classic Lawrence of Arabia , died on Saturday aged 81, his agent has said. He was being treated at London's Wellington hospital after a long illness. He received an honorary Oscar in 2003, having initially turned it down.

Peter O'Toole played some great roles in the movies, but few crossed paths with the Melon Farmers' remit. But of course there was one notable appearance, in the censorship classic, Tinto Brass' Caligula , when he played Tiberius.



Another safe family comedy...

India's generous tax subsidies for family films is making for an unadventurous industry

Link Here16th December 2013

While many in the Tamil film industry are glad that the state government provides a 30% tax exemption for U'-rated films, a growing number of filmmakers feel that there is a scramble for the 'U certificate that is taking the bite out of our films.

Director CS Amudhan revealed that there is a lot of pressure from the production and distribution side to make 'U'-rated films because they cannot afford to lose 30% of the revenue. He said:

Non-star films and small budget films have to be non-formulaic to get noticed. But it has become a business necessity to get 'U' certificate because they will not have the opening of a star-driven film.

He says He is now re-editing his upcoming Rendaavathu Padam after being told by the censor board that the film can only be given 'U/A certificate in its present form.

Producer Rajkumar said:

It is a big task to recover your investment after being taxed 30 per cent of your revenue, so producers are reluctant to take on out-of-the- box stories. This is the reason why we have many 'safe' comedy films these days.



Extract: The Best Job in the World...

The New Zealand chief film censor speaks of his work in a lengthy interview

Link Here14th December 2013

The head of the Office of Film & Literature Classification (OFLC), Andrew Jack has been in the job just over two years. Charged with trimming the naughty and nasty bits from films, books and computer games, he and his staff of 28 haven't been idle: since 2011 they've assessed more than 4000 items.

Most films have passed muster. On Jack's watch, only two cinematic releases have been banned: A Serbian Film which featured graphic depictions of rape, necrophilia and child abuse, and Human Centipede 2 , in which the central character tries to sew 12 people together.

Seemingly random items such as drink cans and clothing are also required to jump through the classification hoops, the most memorable being the so-called Invercargill Hoodie, a sweatshirt from British metal band, Cradle of Filth, which bears the phrase 'Jesus is a Cunt'.

About 15 per cent of videos and films - for both general release and film festivals - that enter New Zealand generally arrive at the censor's office if they carry an age restriction from either Australian or British censors or they are unclassified. They're screened at the office's eight viewing booths or, for mainstream releases, at early-morning private screenings at Wellington cinemas. There will be two of us in a 300-person cinema, Jack says.

The other 85 per cent - films with G, PG and M stickers - come to the office's attention only following a complaint. This is unusual, but not unheard of: in 2007, for example, the office was forced to take action after receiving a number of complaints about the animated film Happy Feet .

In Australia, it had a G rating but we received complaints that 7-year-olds were having nightmares because of a frightening scene featuring a sea lion. If we get enough complaints we'll reclassify the film. We watched it and didn't think it had been properly classified for a New Zealand audience so gave it a PG rating.

The fact that our decisions are robust and balanced is reflected in the small number of complaints we receive. Probably the most complaints we've ever had was last year for the film Ted . It was R13 at the movies and out of 500,000 Kiwis that went to see it only 20 complained to us. So that tells me we're in touch with the public attitude.

...Read the full article



Censors Hustled...

Australian film censors lower the rating for American Hustle after an appeal

Link Here8th December 2013
American Hustle is a 2013 USA crime drama by David O Russell.
With Christian Bale, Amy Adams and Bradley Cooper. YouTube iconBBFC link IMDb

Summary Notes

A con man, Irving Rosenfeld, along with his seductive British partner Sydney Prosser is forced to work for a wild FBI agent Richie DiMaso. DiMaso pushes them into a world of Jersey powerbrokers and mafia.

A three-member panel of the Classification Review Board has unanimously determined that the film American Hustle is classified M (Mature) with the consumer advice Frequent coarse language .

American Hustle was previously classified MA 15+ with the consumer advice Strong coarse language by the Classification Board on 2 December 2013.

Note the Australian M rating is an advisory 15, perhaps the Americans would call it PG-15. The MA15+ rating is a restricted rating like the UK 15 rating.

And for comparison, the BBFC   passed the cinema release 15 uncut for strong language.

In the US it was Rated R for pervasive language, some sexual content and brief violence.



Family Secrets...

Egyptian film cut by the censor just because it addresses homosexuality

Link Here7th December 2013
Creators of the first film to come out of Egypt which directly tackles gay issues have been told they must delete a large chunk of scenes, despite that the film contains no sexually explicit content.

The censors demanded that thirteen scenes be cut from Family Secrets directed by Hany Fawzy.

The director said deleting such a high volume of scenes would remove vital segments of the plot, and damage it artistically. One of the scenes sees the gay protagonist come out to his sister, and in another he accuses his father of being responsible for his sexual orientation .

The censorship comes after the head of the censor board Ahmed Awad, told the AFP last month that the film would not be censored just because it addresses homosexuality ... [BUT] ...

Update: Gay film without the gay

12th January 2013. See  Egyptian debut director Hany Fawzy fears for film on homosexuality from

When Hany Fawzy finished editing Family Secrets , he thought he had made one of the first Egyptian films to focus primarily on homosexuality. Then Egypt s censors watched it. After 13 requested changes, Fawzy fears their edits will turn the protagonist's love affair with another man into a romance-free friendship.

His relationship will seem like a heterosexual relationship, said Fawzy, a seasoned screenwriter making his directorial debut with Family Secrets. It'll mess up the film. You won't be able to understand the psychological dilemma of the character, or his relationship with others.

Family Secrets tells the story of Marwan, a young man who visits five psychiatrists in an attempt to cure himself of what society has led him to consider a disease. Those who come out to their families in Egypt are often encouraged by their parents to do the same.

According to Fawzy, there are no sexually explicit scenes in the film but censors want to cut 13 details, including shots of Marwan resting his head on another man's shoulder in a cinema, and a crucial conversation about homosexuality between the pair in bed. They are also uncomfortable with a scene where a psychiatrist asks him if he wants to sleep with one of his male colleagues.

Rare though the film is, its plot has nevertheless also angered many gay Egyptians, who expect it to imply that homosexuality is something to be ashamed of. From what I have read, it deals with homosexuality in the way that everyone does -- that it's a disease, and that we are not pleased with ourselves, that we want a cure, said Ramy Youssef, known as the first Egyptian to come out on Twitter . This isn't something that can be presented as a disease, said Mahmoud, an activist concerned with gender issues. It's what concerns me most -- that this false psychiatry, the idea of converting people from gay to straight, which has been copied from the west, is recognised as therapy.



Offsite Article: If PG-13 Is the Moneymaker...

Link Here5th December 2013
Why Is Hollywood Cranking Out So Many R-Rated Movies?

See article from



Oral Excesses...

Supporting the hype for Charlie Countryman

Link Here28th November 2013
Charlie Countryman is a 2013 Romania/USA action comedy romance by Fredrik Bond.
With Shia LaBeouf, Evan Rachel Wood and Mads Mikkelsen. YouTube icon IMDb

Evan Rachel Wood co-stars with Shia LaBeouf in Charlie Countryman , an indie drama that earned an R-rating from the Motion Picture Association of America because of some brutal violence, language throughout, sexuality/nudity, and drug use. According to Wood, however, an early MPAA ruling forced director Fredrik Bond to sanitize a key sex scene in order to avoid an adults-only NC-17.

Wood ook to Twitter to admonish members of the ratings board for their stance on female sexuality, noting that the scene in question was cut down because it showed a male performing oral sex on his female partner.

Charlie Countryman is cut and MPAA R rated for:

  • 2014 Millennium RA Blu-ray at US Amazon released on 21st January 2014
  • 2014 Millennium R1 DVD at US Amazon released on 21st January 2014
  • 2013 Millennium VOD [US only] at US Amazon available now
  • 2013 Now on theatrical release



Extract: The actress Peggy Sarno on life with her husband Joe, 'the Ingmar Bergman of porn'...

Good to see the Telegraph do a write up one of America's great adult film makers

Link Here 27th November 2013
The actress Peggy Sarno on life with her husband Joe, the Ingmar Bergman of porn Peggy Sarno has seen it all, having married the porn film director Joe Sarno, starred in many of his films and collaborated on his scripts. As a documentary about the couple's offbeat life is released she talks to Jessica Grose

...Read the full article

The Sarnos: A Life in Dirty Movies is a 2013 Sweden biography by Wiktor Ericsson.
With Joseph W Sarno, Peggy Steffans and Michael Bowen. YouTube icon IMDb

Summary Notes

THE SARNOS - A LIFE IN DIRTY MOVIES is a love story about legendary sexploitation director Joe Sarno, "The Ingmar Bergman of 42nd Street", and his loyal wife and collaborator Peggy - their place in sex film history, life between New York and Sweden, and their struggle to make one last erotic film. A funny and touching portrait of a unique couple who has followed their passion in life - no matter the cost!

A selection from the filmography of Joe Sarno

 1985 Little Oral Annie Takes Manhattan (as Curtis Hollingwood)
 1984 Dirty Blonde (as Eric Anderson)
 1984 Inside Little Oral Annie (as Kenneth Morse)
 1981 Inside Seka (uncredited)
 1981 Deep Inside Annie Sprinkle (uncredited)
 1978 Fäbodjäntan (as Lawrence Henning)
 1978 All About Gloria Leonard (uncredited)
  1977 Inside Jennifer Welles (uncredited)
  1974 Confessions of a Young American Housewife
 1974 Confessions of a Sex Kitten
 1974 Deep Throat Part II (as Joe Sarno)
 1973 The Devil's Plaything
 1971 The Seduction of Inga
 1970 Daddy, Darling
 1969 The Indelicate Balance
 1968 Inga



Offsite Article: Whatever Happened to NC-17 Movies?...

Link Here27th November 2013
Full story: MPAA NC-17...US adults only certificate is the kiss of box office death
Americans rarely get to see an adults-only movie in theatres, so when one appears it causes confusion about what the rating means

See article from



Daydreaming at the BBFC...

The Secret Life of Walter Mitty is cut for a PG rated UK cinema release

Link Here25th November 2013
The Secret Life of Walter Mitty is a 2013 USA comedy fantasy adventure by Ben Stiller.
With Ben Stiller, Kristen Wiig and Adam Scott. YouTube icon BBFC link IMDb

UK: Passed PG for infrequent moderate violence, mild language and sex references after BBFC advised cuts for category for:

  • 2013 cinema release

The BBFC commented:

This work was originally seen for advice. The company was advised that the film was likely to receive a 12A rating but that their preferred PG rating could be achieved by making limited changes, including:

  • to remove sight of naked female pin-up pictures and

  • to reduce violent threat in a fight scene.

When an edited version of the film was submitted for formal classification, these scenes had been addressed and the film was consequently rated PG.



Hurt Religious Feelings...

Bombay court queries the film censorship process leading to a film certificate for Ram-leela

Link Here22nd November 2013
The Bombay High Court has directed the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) to file a statement clarifying if all thecensorship guidelines were followed while issuing a certificate to Sanjay Leela Bhansali's film Ram-leela .

The court was hearing a petition seeking a ban on the usage of the word Ram in the film's title, which has supposedly hurt the religious sentiments of the Hindus.

The petition has claimed that the CBFC had failed to adhere to the censorship guidelines:

I submit that by giving the name to the movie as Ram Leela and showing the main character role by the name of Ram, the picturisation of songs with Lord Rama and his Vanri Sena and showing the main character as womaniser having all the bad habits, doing all illegal things of conducting a video theatre with porn movies is in fact a character assassination of Lord Rama which seriously hurts my belief in Lord Rama and his ideals.

The main grievance of the petitioner is that the respondents have intentionally named the feature film as Ram Leela so as to obtain undue publicity and income out of the revenues of the movie, that too at the cost of the religious feelings and sentiments of lakhs of people belonging to the Hindu religion.

The petition has been filed against the CBFC, producer and director of the film, and Eros International. The court directed all named parties to respond by November 27.

Update: Temporarily banned in state of Uttar Pradesh

22nd November 2013. See  article from

Ram Leela Has been temporarily banned in Uttar Pradesh by the Allahabad High Court. The film is banned while hearing a petition claiming that the film has controversial and objectionable dialogues and calling for the cancellation of the Censor Board certificate.

The petitioners also pleaded that since the film also hurt the sentiments of the Hindus by its name and other things portrayed in the film, it should be banned from exhibition.



Offsite Article: The Wicker Man: The Final Cut...

Link Here21st November 2013 compare the Final Cut with the Theatrical Version

See article from



Extract: Sharper...

Cinema Blend writes that the Extended Cut of Wolverine is better than the Theatrical cut

Link Here20th November 2013
The Wolverine is a 2013 Australia/USA action Sci-Fi fantasy by James Mangold.
With Hugh Jackman, Will Yun Lee and Tao Okamoto. YouTube iconBBFC link IMDb

UK: The Extended Cut was passed 12 uncut for moderate action violence and infrequent strong language and gore for:

  • 2013 20th Century Fox Extended Edition [3D + 2D] RB Blu-ray at UK Amazon released on 18th November 2013

Cinema Blend writes that the Extended Version is better than the Theatrical Cut

The extended cut contains both a whole new sequence and an extended version of another. The first comes after Logan and Mariko (Tao Okamoto) have checked into the Love Hotel. In the original cut Wolverine has a dream about Jean (Famke Janssen) while standing guard and passes out, but in the unrated one he is accosted by a group of Yakuza and nearly gets stun-gunned to death before getting saved by Mariko's knife-throwing skills. The extended scene, meanwhile, is a longer version of the ninja battle in the third act. Not only does the scene have Wolverine performing much better in the fight, it also has Yukio (Rila Fukushima) getting in on the action.

In addition there's more blood spatter throughout the film's fight scenes and more baddies vapourised into a bloody mist. the full article



Er Action Movies Have a Lot of Gun Violence...

MPAA responds to criticisms sparked by research showing that there is more gun violence at PG-13 than in R rated films

Link Here19th November 2013
A study by the Annenberg Public Policy Center and the Ohio State University recently published in the medical journal Pediatrics found that gun violence in the most popular PG-13 releases since 1985 has tripled in frequency. The number of scenes featuring gun violence in PG-13 films, the study found, has come to rival or even surpass the rate of such sequences in R-rated movies.

Surely hardly surprising as most high budget action movies now target an PG-13 rating. Guns are not particular popular in higher rated horror films when slightly more nasty and slower deaths are preferred.

The MPAA's ratings board has now responded to the generally negative press coverage of this research. Critics have claimed that the MPAA is far more permissive of violence in PG-13 films than fleeting nudity or a handful of expletives. Dan Romer of the Annenberg Center said: It may be time to rethink how violence is treated in movie ratings.

Joan Graves, head of the MPAA's ratings board, told The Associated Press that the MPAA is in line with parents' standards. She explained:

We try to get it right. The criticism of our system is not coming from the parents, who are the people we're doing this for.

PG-13 is not a namby-pamby rating, and is intended as a strong warning to parents.

Graves said parents more frequently object to language or sex in movies, and that: they feel they're getting the correct information about the violence:

We're certainly listening on the sexuality and the language. We'd be very interested in adjusting violence if in fact we were hearing from them we're getting it wrong. They don't seem to think that.

Graves said the association is aware of school shootings and other violence and the debate on the possible connection to violence in movies. She said the association is open to making adjustments.

Certainly, it's always under consideration. It's not a static thing, ever.



Update: The Daily Mail and Mediawatch-UK recommend...

The Hunger Games: Catching Fire

Link Here17th November 2013
Full story: The Hunger Games...UK version gets cut for a 12A
The Daily Mail is thankfully providing a little hype for The Hunger Games: Catching Fire. Surely the film makers are appreciative as otherwise the film seems to have proven very uncontroversial compared with the previous film. the Daily Mail writes:

With a public execution, a violent beating and frenzied animals, it hardly sounds like ideal entertainment for children. But film censors appear to think otherwise -- granting The Hunger Games: Catching Fire a 12A rating, which means it can be seen by under-12s if they are with an adult.

In one scene viewers witness a man being flogged and whipped by soldiers and are shown his wounded and bloodied back. Later, an elderly man is clubbed by two soldiers and publicly executed by a gunshot to the head.

The BBFC passed the film 12A for moderate violence and threat and infrequent strong language .

Vivienne Pattison, of the morality campaign group Mediawatch-UK spouted:

The problem with this particular film is that it originates from a book designed for children. Success: The blockbuster has made Miss Lawrence a household name. But critics blast the appeal to children

And there is a very big difference between reading a gory image on the page than burning it into the retinas of young children watching it on the big screen in the cinema.

Although the rating suggests there may be some adult scenes there is still little guidance, and there is nothing in place to stop parents or guardians from taking children as young as six or seven to the cinema to see the film.

The story environment at times is quite realistic and therefore the horrific violence is glamorised.

In a society in which children are exposed to so much violence and adult imagery we should be working to protect youngsters from further exposure in films and games. We don't need to terrify children to entertain them.

Pippa Smith of the religious morality campaign group, Safer Media said:

The film industry puts too much responsibility on parents. It isn't fair they should have to make the decision whether they take their child or not when the guidelines are so vague. Classification on films needs to be much stricter.



Laos Recommends...

Kim Mordaunt's The Rocket about Laos villagers displaced due to dams

Link Here14th November 2013
The Rocket is a 2013 Australia drama by Kim Mordaunt.
With Sitthiphon Disamoe, Loungnam Kaosainam and Thep Phongam. YouTube icon IMDb

As The Rocket's campaign for an Oscar nomination gets under way, the Australian film has been banned in the country in which it is set, Laos.

Director Kim Mordaunt's drama, about an apparently cursed 10-year-old boy who wants to help his struggling family, was invited to the Luang Prabang Film Festival next month.

But the Laos censors  have stopped the Lao-language film from screening because it deals with the touchy issue of relocating villagers for the construction of hydro-electric dams in the country. The Lao government wants to transform the country into the battery of South-east Asia by exporting power to Thailand and Vietnam.

Producer Sylvia Wilcyzski said concerns about the impact of dam construction on villagers was one of the reasons she and Mordaunt made the film.

While a record 76 films are competing for the foreign-language Oscar, many Hollywood pundits consider The Rocket a solid chance, given the acclaim it has received in the US, including three awards at the New York's Tribeca Film Festival, selection for Sundance's touring program and a warm reception at AFI Fest in Los Angeles.



More Michael Myers...

The Producer's Cut of Halloween 6 has resurfaced at a US film event

Link Here10th November 2013
The Producer's Cut of Halloween 6: The Curse of Michael Myers got a 35mm screening in LA.

The Producer's Cut is the original version prepared by the film makers. It was substantially reworked into the Theatrical Version as a result of feedback from preview audiences.

A bootleg copy of this original cut (ie the Producer's Cut ) has circulated at conventions and festivals but has never been officially released. It features more of Donald Pleasence's final performance.

Film critic and event organiser Brian Collins Explained:

just this week, [writer Daniel] Farrands and producer Malek Akkad sprung a surprise on me -- they had a 35mm print of the original cut! As far as we know, it's only shown that one time for the test screening (and perhaps again for the cast and crew who saw their work otherwise mangled by the studio), so this is a HUGE 'get' and a once in a lifetime opportunity to see it on the big screen in 35mm. No, it doesn't mean that the film will be getting a DVD/Blu-ray release for sure, but it's certainly a big step forward, as the studio had to sign off on us showing it and they were totally cool with it.



Approved Politically Correct...

Swedish cinemas introduce a kite mark for gender equality in movies

Link Here7th November 2013
Four Swedish cinemas: Rio Cinema (Stockholm), Roy (Gothenburg), mirror (Malmo ), Red Mill (Helsingborg) that are run by the National Organisation People's Houses and Parks have introduced a politically correct approval symbol for movies.

The launch of the scheme is in partnership with WIFT (Women in Film and Television) and Fair Service.

An A-labeled film is a small indication that in this film, there are two women with names, talking to each other about something other than men.

The so-called Bechdel test has its origins in a 1985 storyline in Alison Bechdel's comic strip Dykes to Watch Out For. It may sound like a low bar. But several big name films have not been 'approved'.

Ellen Tejle , who runs Stockholm's Rio, one of  the participating cinemas said:

The entire Lord of the Rings trilogy, all Star Wars movies, The Social Network, Pulp Fiction and all but one of the Harry Potter movies fail this test.

The Guardian adds a number of current releases and Oscar contenders that fail the test: Alfonso Cuaro'n's Gravity , despite its starring role for Sandra Bullock; Lee Daniels' The Butler, about a presidential servant and the civil rights movement; and Captain Phillips , Paul Greengrass's piracy drama, which involves an all-male gang of pirates attacking an all-male shipping crew.

But of course a seal of political correct approval may be a mixed blessing. It may be that some cinema goers use it to identify films best avoided.



Updated: Less Spit... reveal the cuts to I Spit On Your Grave 2

Link Here25th October 2013
Full story: I Spit on Your Grave...Remake enjoys some good publicity
I Spit on Your Grave 2 is a 2013 USA crime horror thriller by Steven R Monroe.
With Jemma Dallender, Joe Absolom and Yavor Baharov. YouTube iconBBFC link IMDb

UK: Passed 18 for strong bloody violence and sexual violence after 27s of BBFC advised cuts were implemented via 1:41s of edits for:

  • 2013 Anchor Bay Entertainment RB Blu-ray
  • 2013 Anchor Bay Entertainment R2 DVD

See pictorial cuts from . 43 cuts have been made for sexual violence totalling 1:41s.

The rape scenes with Katie were heavily cut or other parts of the picture were used, and some nude scenes were replaced by alternative footage. But the scenes depicting violence weren't changed at all.

As an alternative to the cut UK release, the US release is uncut and MPAA Unrated for:

Update: Uncut in Australia

25th October 2013. See Media Censorship in Australia Facebook page

It seems that the Uncut/Unrated 106m version of I Spit On Your Grave 2 has been passed R18+ uncut in Australia. See article from



Update: A chainsaw movie without cuts? Be careful what you wish for...

Uncut version of Texas Chainsaw looks set for first release on French DVD and Blu-ray

Link Here 24th October 2013
Texas Chainsaw is a 2013 USA horror thriller by John Luessenhop.
With Alexandra Daddario, Tania Raymonde, Scott Eastwood. YouTube iconBBFC link IMDb

It was cut for an MPAA R rating, and this version was then distributed worldwide for theatrical release and home video.

The cuts were restored for an Unrated release but so far this has only been available on digital download.

Now the Unrated Version looks set to be released on DVD and Blu-ray, at least in France.

A 'Version Integrale' is now announced for:

The disks include the original English soundtrack.



Update: Making a Song and a Dance about Film Censorship...

Draft film censorship bill is published in India

Link Here23rd October 2013
Full story: Film Censorship in India...CBFC: Film censors and their cuts
A draft Cinematographic Bill has bee posted on India's Information and Broadcasting (I & B) ministry's website. Comments from the public are now invited.

The drafting committee have included a clause such that if a film has been awarded a certificate then this con then only be revoked by central government. Indian films have been targeted by by vested groups, religious campaigners and politicians all seeking localised bans on films, and the bill is seeking to end this rather chaotic situation.

The Committee has also sought to bring the classification of films up to speed by suggesting a shift to the internationally prevalent practise of age-related classifications and certifications. As against the current practise of U , U/A and A certification, the Committee has proposed to break-up U/A by age to 12+ and 15+ while retaining U and A . The bill also contains penalties of 1 to 3 years in jail, and/or large fines for showing films to underage viewers.

The Committee has also reviewed certain definitions contained in the Cinematograph Act, 1952, to incorporate the sea of changes in film-making. The word film under the proposed law will not be confined to the moving picture content of the film but will include songs and lyrics of the song. This has been done to give the film censors extended powers over songs that offend the easily offended.

The bill proposes that trailers, promotional clips, posters and other material should be certified by the Board or through industry associations.



Update: Too Blue for Idaho...

Blue is the Warmest Colour banned from Idaho cinemas

Link Here20th October 2013
Abdellatif Kechiche's award winning drama, Blue Is the Warmest Colour , has been effectively banned in the US state of Idaho.

Carole Skinner, owner of the Flicks theatre in Boise, said the cinema was unable to show the film because its alcohol licence prohibits the screening of movies which feature acts or simulated acts of sexual intercourse, masturbation, sodomy, bestiality, oral copulation, flagellation or any sexual acts which are prohibited by law and any person being touched, caressed or fondled on the breast, buttocks, anus or genitals . Blue is the Warmest Colour, suffice to say, includes pretty much all of the above.

I'm surprised that Idaho gets to see any movies at all beyond Despicable Me 2 .

Update: The film will play in Idaho after all

5th December 2013.  See  article from

After the media drama, hand wringing and claims that it wouldn't open in Idaho anytime soon, NC-17 movie Blue is the Warmest Color will begin a run at Edwards 9 Cinemas in Downtown Boise on Friday.

Sorry, Variety and The Hollywood Reporter. No news here after all. The movie --- a French lesbian coming-of-age drama --- is the sort of art-house film that normally would be shown at The Flicks. But theater owner Carole Skinner does not book films rated NC-17. Why? Because she sells alcohol at her multiplex. Idaho statute prohibits businesses that serve alcohol from showing films with sexually related material or pretty much any view of human naughty bits.

It's a ridiculous, outdated statute. But Idaho theaters aren't required to sell alcohol. Edwards 9 Cinemas, for example, is not handcuffed by the restriction.



Forced to Adopt an R Rating...

Weinstein to appeal against the MPAA rating for Philomena

Link Here19th October 2013

Philomena is a 2013 UK/USA/France drama by Stephen Frears.
With Michelle Fairley, Judi Dench and Steve Coogan.
YouTube icon IMDb

Summary Notes

A world-weary political journalist picks up the story of a woman's search for her son, who was taken away from her decades ago after she became pregnant and was forced to live in a convent.

For comparison the BBFC passed the cinema release 12A uncut for infrequent strong language and moderate sex references

Film producer Harvey Weinstein is to appeal against a decision by US film censors to give his studio's latest film an R rating. Philomena received the rating from the Classification and Ratings Administration for two instances of bad language.

But the Weinstein Company will now officially appeal against the rating, The Hollywood Reporter has said .



Of Good Report from the South African Film Censors...

Ban gets small film noticed and so gets a showing at the London Film Festival

Link Here19th October 2013
Of Good Report achieved notoriety in South Africa where it was banned by the film censors. The film follows an introverted school teacher in rural South Africa who starts an obsessive sexual affair with a 16-year-old pupil (played by a 23 year old actress) with tragic consequences,

The film screened this week at the London International Film Festival, where director, Jahmil X.T. Qubeka said he is not quite sure if the film's infamy is a blessing or a curse:

It's a double edged sword for me, on the one level this is a small film, it's an independent film, so by definition you will always be struggling and jostling for attention for a film like that especially on a wider scale, in terms of the world of films -- it has no stars, it's in black and white, it's a South African film, so really in terms of attention not many people would have heard of the film had the banning not happened. So the now I am 'the banned film from South Africa' that has given it some kind attention. However, I say it's a double edged sword because on the other hand who wants to be associated with child pornography?'



Recommending the ABCs of Death... petitioner whinges about the non real depiction of animal cruelty

Link Here18th October 2013
The ABCs of Death is a 2012 USA/New Zealand horror by Kaare Andrews, Angela Bettis...
With Ingrid Bolsø Berdal, Iván González and Kyra Zagorsky. BBFC link YouTube icon IMDb

Promotional Material

The ABC's OF DEATH is an ambitious anthology film featuring segments directed by over two dozen of the world's leading talents in contemporary genre film. Inspired by children's educational ABC books, the motion picture is comprised of 26 individual chapters, each helmed by a different director assigned a letter of the alphabet. The directors were then given free reign in choosing a word to create a story involving death. Provocative, shocking, funny and ultimately confrontational; THE ABC's OF DEATH is the definitive snapshot of the diversity of modern horror. Drafthouse Films, Magnet Pictures and Timpson Films are proud to present this alphabetical arsenal of destruction orchestrated by what Fangoria calls "a stunning roll call of some of the most exciting names in horror across the world."

A petitioner on claims that staged and non-real depictions of animal cruelty should be banned. The petition current has 1085 signatures and reads:

This film dramatizes dog fighting (human vs dog), as well as crush films (stomping small animals to death). Neither of these have anything to do with the horror film genre nor are they acceptable forms of artistic expression. Tell Netflix that you do not want to see this!

To: Reed Hastings, Co-Founder and CEO

The ABCs of Death SHOULD BE REMOVED FROM NETFLIX! D is apparently for Dog Fight, which is a ultra slow-motion film of a MAN beating up a DOG. This is NOT OK! I have absolutely NO tolerance or acceptance of ANY portrayal of violence towards animals. P is for Prostitution, I think. A woman has a bunch of kids and is doing whatever she has to in order to get a bike for her girl's birthday, which of course involves lots of shady sex - whatever - that's all fine and good. At some point, she is given a business card by this guy and ultimately goes to some warehouse to meet him. He has a video camera and a glass tank with a kitten and some small animals (mice, etc.). She starts playing with the kitten and then puts it on the floor, petting it with her spiked high-heel. I hope I don't need to tell you what comes next, and I turned it off unfortunately seconds too late, and heard the kitten scream. A CRUSH VIDEO, REALLY, NETFLIX?! This goes so far beyond what is OK that I just cannot even believe a film like this is on here. Regardless of whether any animals were or were not harmed in the making of this, it is an OUTRAGE to support even the portrayal of such a horrible act of cruelty. If this was a message against this type of thing, then the message was NOT properly received by me, and I'm suspecting not by any other person with a soul.



Oops in Arabic...

Film censors miss a bit in Escape Plan

Link Here16th October 2013
Moviegoers in the United Arab Emirates saw the screen turn black as frazzled officials broke up the screening of Sylvester Stallone and Arnold Schwarzenegger's latest action flick after a character was heard cursing in Arabic in the movie.

The National, a state-backed newspaper, reported that the Dubai Media Council asked theaters in the Emirates to halt the screening of the Escape Plan.

Authorities quickly censored the profane words out of the film, and the revised version was back in theaters within hours.



Dumbed Down by Hollywood...

Director of Snowpiercer angry at 20 minutes of cuts inflicted by The Weinstein Company

Link Here8th October 2013
Snowpiercer is a 2013 South Korea/USA/France action Sci-Fi drama by Joon-ho Bong.
With Chris Evans, Tilda Swinton and Ed Harris. YouTube icon IMDb

Summary Notes

In a future where a failed global-warming experiment kills off most life on the planet, a class system evolves aboard the Snowpiercer, a train that travels around the globe via a perpetual-motion engine.

Speaking at a gala screening of the dark sci-fi drama Snowpiercer at the Busan festival, director Joon-ho Bong made a point of calling out to any North Americans, Brits and Australians to let them know that this would be only chance to see the film as he intended it to be watched.

Bong said that the final cut of the film in English-speaking territories lies with The Weinstein Company:

We are still in discussions about the cut, but it is clear that this is the only director's cut you will be able to see, Bong said.

Sources close to the director say that privately he is furious. He has been quoted in other media as saying that up to 20 minutes are to be cut.



Update: Woody Smouldering...

Blue Jasmine withdrawn from India over mandatory on screen smoking warnings

Link Here8th October 2013
Full story: Smoking and Drinking in Films...India wound up by smoking in the movies and TV
Blue Jasmine is a 2013 USA comedy drama by Woody Allen.
With Cate Blanchett, Alec Baldwin and Peter Sarsgaard. YouTube icon IMDb

Woody Allen' s Blue Jasmine will not be shown in India.

Allen is not one to compromise his artistic vision. He decided not to show the film in India rather than add legally required anti-smoking messages to two scenes.

PVR Pictures Ltd., the Indian distributor said the director considered the required additions, written warnings that appear on screen during scenes with smoking, and found them to be unacceptable.




Banned Cameroon film gets a Kenyan video on demand release to evade the ban

Link Here8th October 2013
The President is a Cameroon film by Jean-Piere Bekalo
With Gerard Essomba, Valery Indongo and Valsero

Kenya's BuniTV has hosted an online release of the banned Cameroonian film The President: "How Do You Know Its Time to Go?" , directed by Jean-Pierre Bekolo.

According to Buni TV, the move will make it possible for Cameroonians inside and outside the West African country to access the film following its swift banning by the government.

The film is a story about a fictional president who disappears days before the general election, and refers to Cameroon's strongman President Paul Biya, who has been in power for more than three decades.

Director Bekolo Said:

Today, new technologies provide a solution for filmmakers in countries that still impose censorship on cinema and where freedom of speech is still threatened. Online distribution will make The President widely available, and hopefully this will lead to real dialogue on the issues the film raises.

The film premiered at the Durban International Film Festival in July and touches on a number of taboo subjects including the ailing health of President Biya, who spends most of his time outside the country for treatment, and a reflection of other presidents in similar circumstances including Eduardo de Santos, of Angola, and Zambia's Michael Sata said to be in India or London.

This film, although set in Cameroon, is said to be a reflection of a number of African countries including Ethiopia, Ghana, Malawi and Nigeria whose presidents have died in power after undergoing treatment for years amid denial from aides and parties.

The film will be available from October 12 BuniTV's subscription service.



Offsite Article: World War Z...

Link Here7th October 2013 reveal the many cuts to produce the PG-13 rated Theatrical Version

See article from



Update: Nymphomaniac...

Relating to a neurotic condition in film makers in which the symptoms are a compulsion to generate hype about a film having more sex than it really has

Link Here6th October 2013
Full story: Nymphomaniac...A film by Lars Von Trier
The hype for Lars Von Trier's sex odyssey Nymphomaniac , continues .

News from Montages in Norway indicates that a promised hardcore version of the film is being delayed. The film will still open in Denmark and Norway at Christmas, but will be the softcore cut.

The hardcore version is now set to premiere at the Cannes Film Festival in 2014.

However the hardcore version is not so interesting as it sounds as any involvement by the main actors will be faked by CGI.



Update: No Stranger...

Stranger by the Lake is banned from the Beirut Film Festival

Link Here4th October 2013
Stranger by the Lake is a 2013 France gay drama by Alain Guiraudie.
With Pierre Deladonchamps, Christophe Paou and Patrick d'Assumçao. YouTube iconBBFC link IMDb

Lebanon has banned a French film depicting homosexuality and a local short film about the tradition of temporary marriage among some Shiite Muslims, film festival organisers have said.

The Beirut International Film Festival said it had been informed by censors that L'inconnu du lac (Stranger by the Lake) , a thriller by Alain Guiraudie about two men who fall in love after meeting at a cruising spot for gay men along the shore of a lake, had been banned. Perhaps unsuprising as the film includes scenes featuring real sex.

The other film is I Offered You Pleasure, by Lebanese director Farah Shaer. It deals with the controversial subject of temporary marriage, or pleasure marriage, a tradition among some Shiites that opponents view as an excuse for sex outside of conventional wedlock, otherwise forbidden by Islam.

A security official said the censorship board, which is attached to the interior ministry, had concluded the two films did not meet its criteria and that the minister would make a final decision on them.



Burning Manuscripts...

Iranian film director has his passport confiscated apparently over a film critical of the government

Link Here3rd October 2013
Earlier this year, Iran was mulling litigation over how it was portrayed in Ben Affleck's Academy Award winner Argo , and it boycotted the 2012 Oscars in protest over the Innocence Of Muslims video that was made in the U.S. Now that a new government led by perceived political moderate Hassan Rouhani is in place, the Argo lawsuit has lost steam. This had led some to wonder if a new era of tolerance for freedom of expression was afoot. But, it has now emerged that Manuscripts Don't Burn director Mohammad Rasoulof had his passport confiscated on a recent return home to Iran, and is still blocked from leaving the country.

Why is Rasoulof landlocked now? People close to the situation are refraining from commenting for fear of complicating matters. But it's suspected that the subject of Manuscripts Don't Burn , Rasoulof's latest film which won a FIPRESCI prize in Cannes' Un Certain Regard last May, could be a factor. It was described by the Toronto Film Festival as an incendiary critique of the Iranian regime that tackles head-on the violent machinations of censorship in Iran.

In 2010, Rasoulof was arrested for propaganda against the regime and received a six-year prison sentence, ultimately reduced to one, and a 20-year ban on filmmaking. The prison sentence has not been enforced and he has continued to travel, recently accompanying Manuscripts to Telluride and Toronto .

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