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Phantasm 40th Anniversary...

2019 five film set by Don Coscarelli just released on US Blu-ray with an extra scene restored to Phantasm II


Link Here25th December 2019
Phantasm 40th Anniversary is a 2019 five film set by Don Coscarelli.
Starring Angus Scrimm and Reggie Bannister.
Phnatasm II was cut in the US for an MPAA R rating. Subsequent worldwide releases have been this cut version including BBFC 18 rated cinema release, VHS and DVD...

Until a Well Go Blu-ray set featured a restoration which reinserted the infamous X-rated scene with the Sphere and the priest.

However the new set proved a bit of the hit and the market price is now in orbit.

US: Uncut and MPAA R rated for:
  • 2019 Well Go Usa RA Blu-ray at US Amazon released on 3rd December 2019

 

 

Curious censorship...

Erotic film poster is censored in Spain


Link Here24th December 2019

Curiosa is a 2019 France historical drama by Lou Jeunet.
Starring Noémie Merlant, Niels Schneider and Benjamin Lavernhe. IMDb

Paris 1895; Pierre is a Parisian dandy and poet on the verge of fame. He and his poet friend Henri are both madly in love with Marie, the cheeky daughter of their mentor, Franco-Cuban poet José-Maria de Heredia. They start a cat-and-mouse game with people who involve their lives and breaking the codes set by society which will will make them one of the best-known writers and poets of 19th-century France.

On December 13, the French film Curious, directed by Lou Jeunet was released. Now the film is making a name for itself in Spanish cinemas.

However, the controversy lies in that in the original poster you see a woman sitting exposing her back, she is naked from the waist upwards and wearing a semitransparent petticoat. In the censored poster in Spain, half of the protagonist's body has been removed, omitting the back and buttocks, and only half of the leg is visible.

A change that did not go unnoticed by commentators who considered the edit to be censorship.

The image went viral since both versions were tweeted by the director of the XS Puçol Short Film Festival, Javier Nav3do.

Social media users noted that it's shocking that Spain still lives under the shadow of Franco's censorship as one twitter user stated: We go back to the dark days of censorship

On the pro-censorship side of the debate: it's a disgrace that a film needs to be promoted using the image of a semi-naked woman.

 

 

Updated: The last outpost of the Resistance...

Gay kiss cut from the Rise of SkyWalker in the Middle East


Link Here24th December 2019
Star Wars: Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker is a 2019 USA action Sci-Fi fantasy by JJ Abrams.
Starring Daisy Ridley, Adam Driver and Billie Lourd. IMDb

The surviving Resistance faces the First Order once more in the final chapter of the Skywalker saga.

Hollywood's campaign to promote diversity resulted in a gay kiss being included in the latest Star Wars movie, The Rise of Skywalker. This is the franchise's first same-sex kiss.

But the importance of this galactic first hasn't struck a chord in the Middle East. According to several people speaking to The Hollywood Reporter who have seen the latest Star Wars at cinemas in Dubai, the scene featuring the kiss had been removed from their screening.

Given that the United Arab Emirates is largely more tolerant than its neighbours when it comes to film censorship and Dubai's status as the regional hub for the entertainment industry, it is thought that this cut will be replicated across the Middle East.

The Hollywood Reporter also notes that the Chinese films censors left the kiss intact for Chinese audiences.

Update: Singapore too

24th December 2019. See article from bbc.com

Disney has cut a brief scene of two women kissing in the Singaporean version of its latest Star Wars film. The scene was described by reviewers as a brief flash of two women kissing... among a crowd of characters.

But the version released in Singapore omits the scene. Singapore's film censors told the BBC that Disney cut the scene so it didn't get a higher age rating.

The applicant has omitted a brief scene which under the film classification guidelines would require a higher rating, said a spokesperson from IMDA.

Without the kiss, the film is rated PG13 in Singapore.

 

 

Offsite Article: Bad Taste...


Link Here17th December 2019
How Peter Jackson's Bad Taste Got Banned In Australia in 1987 and Led To The Dissolution Of Queensland's Film Board

See article from screenrant.com

 

 

The Satanic Rites of Dracula...

The BBFC revisit the film for the first time since a cut VHS in 1988


Link Here1st December 2019
The Satanic Rites of Dracula is a 1973 UK horror by Alan Gibson.
With Christopher Lee, Peter Cushing, Michael Coles. YouTube iconBBFC link IMDb

In London in the 1970s, Scotland Yard police investigators think they have uncovered a case of vampirism. They call in an expert vampire researcher named Van Helsing (a descendant of the great vampire-hunter himself, no less) to help them put a stop to these hideous crimes. It becomes apparent that the culprit is Count Dracula himself, disguised as a reclusive property developer, but secretly plotting to unleash a fatal virus upon the world. 

It's been many years since the BBFC has seen The Satanic Rites of Dracula.

Previously the film was heavily cut by the BBFC for X rated cinema release in 1973. The cuts were to:

  • opening nude sacrifice scene,
  • 2 staking scenes, 
  • the electrocution of a guard

Cuts were requested to the shooting of Torrence but these cuts was not made

This cut UK cinema version was further cut by 1s for BBFC 18 rated VHS in 1988.

The UK cinema version has now just been passed 15 by the BBFC for strong sexualised violence for:

  • 2019 Warner Bros. R0 Blu-ray at UK Amazon released on 14th October 2019

For the record, in the US the UK cinema version was further cut and PG rated  under the title of Count Dracula and his Vampire Bride . US distributors later reverted to the the UK Version which received an MPAA R rating in 1978. However US home video releases have been MPAA Unrated and feature the UK version with, and without, the BBFC 1s video cut.

See further details at Melon Farmers Film Cuts: The Satanic Rites of Dracula

 

 

Updated: Screened in the wrong postcode...

Vue Cinemas ban the gangland film Blue Story after violence breaks out at a Birmingham screening


Link Here28th November 2019
Blue Story is a 2019 UK crime drama by Andrew Onwubolu.
Starring Stephen Odubola, Micheal Ward and Khali Best. BBFC link IMDb

Blue Story is a tragic tale of a friendship between Timmy and Marco, two young boys from opposing postcodes. Timmy, a shy, smart, naive and timid young boy from Deptford, goes to school in Peckham where he strikes up a friendship with Marco, a charismatic, streetwise kid from the local area. Although from warring postcodes, the two quickly form a firm friendship until it is tested and they wind up on rival sides of a street war. Blue Story depicts elements of Rapman's own personal experiences and aspects of his childhood.

Vue Cinema bosses have decided to pull the controversial gang film Blue Story from all its venues after gangs with machetes terrified families when the film was being screened at an inner city cinema in Birmingham.

Two schoolgirls, a boy and a man were arrested and seven police officers suffered minor  injuries as dozens of officers swarmed the area just after 5.30pm on November 23. People were evacuated as Vue cinema managers decided to close the venue.

Showcase Cinemas later announced that it was following suit and cancelling all screenings at its cinemas, but soon changed its mind and resumed screenings. Odeon is continuing to screen the film but with extra security staff on hand.

The cinema film was passed 15 uncut by the BBFC for very strong language, strong violence, threat, sex, drug misuse.

Update: Resuming

28th November 2019. See article from bbc.com

The boss of the Vue cinema chain that banned a London gang film after a mass brawl in Birmingham has told the BBC he plans to resume screenings by the weekend. And indeed the film was once again being screened by the weekend.

Vue banned Blue Story after saying there had been 25 serious incidents in 16 of its cinemas. But its chief executive, Tim Richards, said it was now looking at beefing up security to restart screenings.

 

 

Updated: Joined up censorship...

Speculation put to rest that the Lady and the Tramp will be censored for the new streaming service Disney+


Link Here18th November 2019
rDisney is promising an extensive near complete library of its films to be made available on its new streaming service, Disney Plus. This has necessitated a review of content in order to bring it up to date with modern-PC sensibilities.

It has already been reported that a very notably absent film from the catalogue will be the Oscar-winning 1946 animated musical Song of the South , that deals with the post civil war period in the United States and the abolition of slavery. It inevitably included themes and depictions that are now forbidden.

Also for the chop is the Dumbo scene featuring the character of Jim Crow, a charcater naming referencing US racial segregation laws. Then there's the seduction of twin Barbie dolls in Toy Story 2 -- where a character by the name of Stinky Pete is seen promising the Barbies roles in Toy Story 3 . This was judged out of order on #MeToo grounds.

A new addition to the list is the cartoon Lady and the Tramp from 1955. The film has a song featuring a short appearance of two conjoined cats called Si and Am. The term 'Siamese Twins' is now frowned upon so it seems likely that this allusion will have to be overdubbed for release on Disney Plus.

According to IMDb, an early pre-release cut of the film had a much longer appearance featuring the cats, but this was mostly deleted in 1955 as it was decided that the awkward restricted movement of the cats didn't really fit in with the rest of the film.

Update: Warnings not cuts

14th November 2019. See article from theverge.com

The Disney+ streaming service has now started and so commentators have been finding out ho Disney has addressed 'inappropriate content'.

Well the good news is that Disney has opted for warnings over cuts. The Verge writes:

Some of Disney's older movies streaming on Disney+ will include disclaimers about the cultural context of certain scenes that are considered outright racist and prejudiced today. The disclaimer on certain titles is found within the description box, and reads, This program is presented as originally created. It may contain outdated cultural depictions. The Verge also notes that warning only runs before the movie and does not appear again in the video.

One popular example floating around Twitter is Disney's 1941 animated feature film, Dumbo . An infamous scene at the end of the movie finds a group of crows singing about seeing an elephant fly. The scene relies on a series of racist stereotypes to get through the song, including naming the lead character Jim Crow, a mocking term used to insult black men. The scene is still in the version streaming on Disney+.

It's encouraging to see Disney acknowledge the darker elements of its past film and TV content, but this disclaimer is also the bare minimum, writer, critic, and Disney expert Josh Spiegel told The Verge:

Frankly, a lot of Disney+ subscribers might not even notice the disclaimer, instead of just clicking Play on a title.

Update: Grunkle Stan's Fez

18th November 2019. See article from piratesandprincesses.net

Gravity Falls , a popular Disney cartoon series, has been on the receiving end of Disney's censorship blade. The series ended only a couple of years ago, but the character of Grunkle Stan has had the symbol removed from his fez in the first part of Season 1.

The symbol was supposed to be a fish but the theory behind the change was that maybe it too closely resembled the crescent moon, the symbol of islam. It seems unlikely that there was anything intended by the resemblance.

 

 

Slasher morphs into chick flick...

Black Christmas is remade as a PG-13 rated film that needs 'to be available to a younger female audience'


Link Here15th November 2019
Black Christmas is a 2019 New Zealand / USA horror mystery thriller by Sophia Takal.
Starring Imogen Poots, Cary Elwes and Brittany O'Grady. IMDb

Hawthorne College is quieting down for the holidays. One by one, sorority girls on campus are being killed by an unknown stalker. But the killer is about to discover that this generation's young women aren't willing to become hapless victims as they mount a fight to the finish.

Blumhouse and director Sophia Takal's remake of Bob Clark's Christmas slasher classic Black Christmas will be released this Christmas. It has been rated PG-13 by the MPA for violence, terror, thematic content involving sexual assault, language, sexual material, and drinking.

Co-writer April Wolfe took to Twitter to explain the PG-13 rating, writing:

Here's the deal: We wrote it with an R in mind. When they did the test screenings, was clear that this movie needed to be available to a younger female audience because the subject matter is timely. Also, I want to indoctrinate girls into horror. Doesn't make it any less vicious!

Update: Box office flop

20th December 2019.

Predictably the combination of feminist movie and PG-13 rated violence found few friends and the film flopped at the box office.

 

 

Cheers...not...

Indian film censors cut Ford v Ferrari


Link Here13th November 2019
Full story: Film cuts in India...Censor cuts for movies released in India
Ford v Ferrari is a 2019 USA / France action sport biography by James Mangold.
Starring Christian Bale, Matt Damon and Caitriona Balfe. BBFC link IMDb

American car designer Carroll Shelby and driver Ken Miles battle corporate interference, the laws of physics and their own personal demons to build a revolutionary race car for Ford and challenge Ferrari at the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 1966.

The film was cut by India's Central Board of Film Certification to blur out alcoholic drinks and to mute the phrase son of a bitch.

A source close to the film told timesnownews:

We know we've to blur out the bottles because they carry brand name and CBFC guidelines do not allow that. But a mere glass being blurred out is something I'm hearing for the first time.

Adding that studios are often prepared in advance for such cuts, the person added, You know the committee is going to send the print back with such cuts. Can't do much about it. It's frustrating. .

For comparison the BBFC passed the film 12A uncut for infrequent strong language, moderate threat

Update: CBFC pedantry

17th November 2019. See article from hindustantimes.com

Tushar Karmarkar, Regional Officer, of The Central Board of Film Certication (CBFC) Mumbai has denied blurring the alcohol bottles in Hollywood film Ford v Ferrari.

It seems that in fact the alcohol blurring was pre-cut by the distributor as the CBFC has a rule which bans alcohol from U/A movies, So although the censors are correct in their pedantic denial, the film was cut solely to comply with CBFC rules.

According to a CBFC official document, a copy of which is with Hindustan Times. The specified cuts are:

  • The muting or replacing words such as sons of whore , son of a 'bitch'; an
  • insertion of anti-smoking disclaimers and a static message wherever a smoking scene appears.

But Karmarkar says, It (the blurring) was voluntarily done by teh distributors, as per our records.

 

 

Just Jokering around...

The director of Joker speaks of a weird bathtub scene that had to be cut for an MPAA R rating


Link Here11th November 2019
Full story: Batman Movies...A history of controversy
Joker is a 2019 USA crime thriller by Todd Phillips.
Starring Robert De Niro, Joaquin Phoenix and Marc Maron. BBFC link IMDb

Joker centers around an origin of the iconic arch nemesis and is an original, standalone story not seen before on the big screen. Todd Phillips' exploration of Arthur Fleck (Joaquin Phoenix), a man disregarded by society, is not only a gritty character study, but also a broader cautionary tale.

While speaking at the Santa Barbara Film Festival, Joker director Todd Phillips explained that there were a few scenes that he had to cut, the most notable of which was a scene had Joaquin Phoenix's Arthur Fleck doing something bizarre while inside a bathtub.

Phillips suggested that the scene that was removed is not sexually explicit in nature, but is simply too bizarre for a standard R-rated movie to handle. He spoke in vague terms at the film festival:

So the other thing that's great about Joaquin is that he's always up to try things -- the fridge was one of those. It wasn't in the script it was something that Joaquin just kind of did and there was a few others, there's only one other that's in the movie and it's when he's laughing after he goes to [Zazie Beetz's] apartment and he comes back down the hall and he's laughing alone in that living room, that was another one...

There were two or three others we shot, one that is amazing in a bathtub, but I don't think we can actually include it in an R-rated movie and it's not because it was pornographic, it was just insane.

 

 

Updated: Delta Airlines claims it was a ghastly mistake to censor sacrosanct gay content...

Olivia Wilde complains about a cut airlines version of her film, Booksmart


Link Here3rd November 2019
Booksmart is a 2019 USA comedy by Olivia Wilde.
Starring Skyler Gisondo, Kaitlyn Dever and Lisa Kudrow. BBFC link IMDb

On the eve of their high school graduation, two academic superstars and best friends realize they should have worked less and played more. Determined not to fall short of their peers, the girls try to cram four years of fun into one night.

Olivia Wilde's coming-of-age film, Booksmart, was critically acclaimed, but if you happened to catch it on an airplane, you didn't see the movie as she intended.

In a series of tweets Wednesday, Wilde, who directed the R-rated movie, explained that a third-party editing company that censors films for airlines removed several scenes from Booksmart that centered on female sexuality.

Among the changes: the words genitals and vagina were cut, although the word fuck was left in, and a consensual love scene between two women was omitted.

What message is this sending to viewers and especially to women? That their bodies are obscene? That their sexuality is shameful? Wilde asked. I urge every airline, especially those who pride themselves on inclusivity, to stop working with this third-party company, and trust the parental advisory warning to allow viewers to opt out if they choose.

However Delta Airlines responded to the tweets implying that it was ok to censor anything it liked, including straight sexuality, but obviously it was an error to censor gay sexuality. A representative for Delta Air Lines told People magazine that Delta uses films edited by a third-party company to censor anything in the movie that violates their guidelines:

Still, Delta's content parameters do not in any way ask for the removal of homosexual content from the film. We value diversity and inclusion as core to our culture and our mission and will review our processes to ensure edited video content doesn't conflict with these values.

Update: Gay themed scenes unbanned

3rd November 2019. See article from theguardian.com

The airline Delta has now said it will start showing fuller versions of the films Booksmart and Rocketman that were controversially edited to remove scenes involving LGBTQ love and sexuality.

The airline said the edits were made, unrequested, by a third-party vendor, with Delta picking the version for in-flight viewing. It said it has now put in place new measures to ensure the movies do not omit the LGBTQ scenes. A Delta spokeswoman said:

Studios often provide videos in two forms: a theatrical, original version and an edited version

We selected the edited version and now realize content well within our guidelines was unnecessarily excluded from both films. We are working to make sure this doesn't happen again.

The studio has agreed to provide a special Delta edit that retains the LGBTQ+ love scenes in both Booksmart and Rocketman that will be on our flights as soon as possible.

Delta made no mention of restoring heterosexual scenes that have been censored in other movies, and made no comment about whether their censorship rules going forward will be based on equality for all, not the few.

 

 

Offsite Article: What's so unethical about my Jordan Peterson documentary?...


Link Here 3rd November 2019
Many people don't like seeing the human side of the polarising professor. By the director Patricia Marcoccia

See article from unherd.com

 

 

Offsite Article: Maybe a few Gremlins in their thought processes...


Link Here 2nd November 2019
A Collider article claims that the MPAA decision to introduce the PG-13 rating was more about merchandising to children rather than the content of the movies.

See article from collider.com

 

 

Updated: Terminator: Dark Fate...

15 rated for UK cinema release and MPAA R rated in the US


Link Here31st October 2019
Terminator: Dark Fate is a 2019 China / USA action Sci-Fi adventure by Tim Miller.
Starring Arnold Schwarzenegger, Mackenzie Davis and Edward Furlong. BBFC link IMDb

More than two decades have passed since Sarah Connor prevented Judgment Day, changed the future, and re-wrote the fate of the human race. Dani Ramos (Natalia Reyes) is living a simple life in Mexico City with her brother (Diego Boneta) and father when a highly advanced and deadly new Terminator - a Rev-9 (Gabriel Luna) - travels back through time to hunt and kill her. Dani's survival depends on her joining forces with two warriors: Grace (Mackenzie Davis), an enhanced super-soldier from the future, and a battle-hardened Sarah Connor (Linda Hamilton). As the Rev-9 ruthlessly destroys everything and everyone in its path on the hunt for Dani, the three are led to a T-800 (Arnold Schwarzenegger) from Sarah's past that may be their last best hope.

The BBFC has just announced its rating for the cinema release of Terminator: Dark Fate. It was passed 15 uncut for strong violence, bloody images, language.

There has been a little debate as to whether the franchise has returned to more adult oriented fare but 4 other European countries have passed the film with 12 ratings or under. So maybe the 15 rating from the BBFC is an outlier and 12 is the norm.

Update: Censored whilst claiming to be uncensored

16th October 2019. See latest MPAA ratings [pdf] from filmratings.com

The film has just been rated R by the MPA (previously MPAA) for violence throughout, language and brief nudity.

Update: New Zealand's Chief Censor speaks about his 13 rating

31st October 2019. See article from stuff.co.nz

Terminator: Dark Fate, released in New Zealand today, has been given an R13 rating by the Office of Film and Literature Classification, with warnings for strong violence and offensive language.

But in Australia, the film has a rating of MA15+, which means it is legally restricted to viewers aged 15 and older (children under 15 must be accompanied by a parent or adult guardian). The film also has a certificate of 15 in the UK, while in the US it has been rated R, which requires anyone under the age of 17 to be accompanied by an adult.

Chief censor David Shanks said based on the office's research, New Zealand audiences tended to be less concerned about bad language and nudity than other markets, which sometimes resulted in disparities. He said:

In this case, we've given another major film a lower restriction than the Australian authorities. It's not that we're more conservative or more liberal than any of the other authorities, it's just that due to our engagement with young people and the public, we're attuned to and sensitised to slightly different things.

Shanks also pointed out that the R13 classification was unique to New Zealand, with the Australian Classification Board having to choose between M and MA15+.

 

 

Don't mention banning 120 online games...

Australian film and game censors publish their Annual Report


Link Here28th October 2019
The Australian Classification Board has published its Annual Report covering the period. 1 July 2018 to 30 June 2019.

The report starts with a long report about schmoozing with the bigwigs of the film censorship world at an international conference of film censors.

The Australian film censors have had a pretty good year on the film front. No banned films and only a couple of films with enough classification issues for a press release. These were for Bumblebee and Rocketman .

On the video games front the censors recalled their bans of Song of Memories and most notably Dayz . The Censorship Board is saddled with some stupid rules laid down in statute as a bit of compromise to get an adults only games rating, The lawmakers decided that the rules would be tough on the depiction of drugs leading to the modern day censors getting continually embarrassed by having to ban games where drugs are depicted as beneficial.

The censors didn't have much to say about the 120 online games banned under the International Age Rating Coalition (IARC) classification tool. This automated tools seems to assign ratings by random. Minor variants, eg for different consoles, can get widely differing ratings including bans. When a game has sufficient gravitas to make the news, the human censors quietly edit the database with a more sensible rating. It is hard to believe that 120 online games justify being banned.

The censors also noted that they banned the murderous live stream of Brenton Tarrant and his manifesto. Carefully but awkwardly reported without mentioning his name, which serves only to highlight the contrived omission.

Film censors always like to report on the complaints mailbag, probably because, commendably, there generally few complainst about their decision. The Board announced:

  • 124 complaints about decisions for films
  • 39 complaints about decisions for computer games
  • 3 complaints about decisions made by the IARC classification tool
  • 6 complaints about decisions made by the Netflix classification tool.

Of the 124 complaints about the classifications of films, 28 were for the theatrical release film, Show Dogs , which had attracted 118 complaints in the period of the previous report. The next most complained about film was the theatrical release film, A Star is Born , which received 13 complaints about an offscreen suicide, followed by Instant Family , which received 11 complaints about strong lanugage, and A House With A Clock In Its Walls , which received nine complaints for being a bit too scary for kids.

Of the games complaints, 26 were about the ban of We Happy Few (actually initially banned during the period of the previous Annual Report). This was another example of a victim of the silly rules about the depiction of drugs.

 

 

The Rise Of Jordan Peterson...

And the fall of venues willing to show the observational documentary


Link Here22nd October 2019
The Rise Of Jordan Peterson is a 2019 Canada documentary by Patricia Marcoccia.
Starring Jordan Peterson. YouTube icon  BBFC link IMDb
A rare, intimate glimpse into the life and mind of Jordan Peterson, the academic and best-selling author who captured the world's attention with his criticisms of political correctness and his life-changing philosophy on discovering personal meaning. Christened as the most influential public intellectual in the western world, University of Toronto psychology professor Jordan Peterson skyrocketed to fame after he published a controversial viral video series entitled "Professor Against Political Correctness" in 2016. Within 2 years, he sold over 3 million copies of his self-help book, 12 Rules For Life, and became simultaneously branded by some as an academic rockstar selling out theatres around the world, and by others as a dangerous threat to progressive society. THE RISE OF JORDAN PETERSON intimately traces the transformative period of Peterson's life while visiting rare moments with his family, friends and foes who share their own versions of the Jordan Peterson story.

Although the documentary itself is observational rather than political, the politics of Jordan Peterson is controversial for his stance against political correctness. The film hasn't been banned by official censors but has routinely been refused venues for screening.

US: Uncut and MPAA Unrated for:
  • 2019 Gravitas Ventures RA Blu-ray at US Amazon released on 29th October 2019
  • 2019 Gravitas Ventures R1 DVD at US Amazon released on 29th October 2019
UK: Passed 12A uncut for infrequent strong language, discriminatory references:
  • 2019 cinema release
UK: BBFC rating not yet published for:

A Review

See article from quillette.com by Carol Horton

Given today's downward cultural spiral, it's disturbing but not surprising that the makers of a thoughtful new documentary about Jordan Peterson are having a hard time finding somewhere to show their film. Many mainstream and independent cinemas have refused to screen it because they're fearful of controversy or morally concerned. One theater in Toronto cancelled a week-long showing after some of the staff took issue with it. A theater in Brooklyn cancelled a second screening, despite the fact that the first sold out and received good reviews, because some staff were offended . . . and felt uncomfortable.

It isn't a conventional talking heads-style documentary. It doesn't seek to hammer an agenda into its audience. Instead, the film honors the complexity of both of Peterson, his supporters, and his critics.

See the full article from quillette.com

 

 

Once Upon a Time in Censorland...

China bans Tarantino's Once Upon a Time in Hollywood. Was it for an irreverent depiction of Bruce Lee?


Link Here20th October 2019
Full story: Film Censorship in China...All Chinese films censored to be suitable for kids
Once Upon a Time ... in Hollywood is a 2019 USA / UK comedy drama by Quentin Tarantino.
Starring Leonardo DiCaprio, Brad Pitt and Margot Robbie. BBFC link IMDb

Quentin Tarantino's Once Upon a Time... in Hollywood visits 1969 Los Angeles, where everything is changing, as TV star Rick Dalton (Leonardo DiCaprio) and his longtime stunt double Cliff Booth (Brad Pitt) make their way around an industry they hardly recognize anymore. The ninth film from the writer-director features a large ensemble cast and multiple storylines in a tribute to the final moments of Hollywood's golden age.

A few days ago the Chinese cinema release of Quentin Tarantino's Once Upon a Time ... in Hollywood was cancelled with just a week's notice. The film censors banned the film but did not given any explanation of the reason why.

Tarantino, who is known to be opposed to any kind of tinkering with his films and has final-cut rights included in his contract, has no plans to bring his film back to the editing bay, especially given that China has offered no explanation for what is objectionable in the film that revolves around the events leading up to the infamous Manson Family murders of 1969.

The decision to halt the release is speculated to be about Tarantino's portrayal of the late martial arts hero Bruce Lee, who was of Chinese descent. It seems that Bruce Lee's daughter, Shannon Lee, made a direct appeal to China's National Film Administration, asking that it demand changes to her father's portrayal. Friends and family of the Hollywood action star have criticized Tarantino for his portrayal of Lee, saying it doesn't resemble the real-life man and is instead a caricature.

Another source suggested that China may finally be balking at the film's violence, which is graphic at times but far less than a typical Tarantino film. However there are reports that the film had actually been approved and that the something must have happened to change the censor's mind.

 

 

Updated: Abominable gaslighting...

US/Chinese kid's cartoon banned and cut in Asian countries over propaganda reinforcing China's grab of the South China Sea


Link Here20th October 2019
Abominable is a 2019 China / USA  children's cartoon comedy by Jill Culton and Todd Wilderman (co-director).
Starring Chloe Bennet, Albert Tsai and Tenzing Norgay Trainor. IMDb

Three teenagers must help a Yeti return to his family while avoiding a wealthy man and a zoologist who want it for their own needs.

The new animated children's movie Abominable, a co-production between the American studio DreamWorks and the Chinese company Pearl Studio, seems innocent enough. A Chinese girl finds a yeti, a mythical creature also known as the Abominable Snowman.

But in Vietnam, the Philippines and Malaysia, the abomination in the movie is not the yeti but an image of a map of the South China Sea. And on that map, there's a U-shaped dotted line that encompasses almost the entire South China Sea. It's known as the Nine-Dash Line.

Under international agreements, China does not have exclusive rights to the entire South China Sea. But Beijing has just simply ignored that and called it an illegitimate ruling. Now at every opportunity China presents its claims as fact.

This claim is not OK with other countries in the region:

  • The image of the map caused Vietnam to remove the movie from theaters, according to a Vietnamese official.
  • The Philippines Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. proposed to cut out the said contentious scene and even suggested a universal boycott of all @Dreamworks productions from here on. Other politicians have called for a ban but so far this has not happened
  • Malaysia's film censor has ordered the China map to be cut

Update: Banned in the Philippines

19th October 2019. See article from cebudailynews.inquirer.net

The animated film has been removed from Philippine theaters since Tuesday, the Movie and Television Review and Classification Board said in a statement.

MTRCB understands the situation brought about by the movie 'Abominable.' We wish to assure the public that the said movie is already off the Philippine market effective October 15, 2019, said MTRCB Chair Rachel Arenas.

Update: Withdrawn in Malaysia

19th October 2019. See article from ca.reuters.com

Abominable will not be released in Malaysia after its producers Universal declined to implement censor cuts to a scene showing China's nine-dash line claim to the South China Sea.

 

 

Updated: Durj...

Movie banned in Pakistan for its sensitive cannibalism theme


Link Here19th October 2019
Durj (The Casket) is a 2019 Pakistan crime mystery thriller by Shamoon Abbasi.
Starring Shamoon Abbasi, Sherry Shah and Maira Khan. IMDb

The reality behind a hideous crime is yet to be unveiled as a reporter's wife dives deep within the depths of despair and darkness to seek the truth of her missing husband.

The film was banned in Pakistan by the film censors of the CBFC.

An anonymous source from censor board said the film has been banned because of it's subject. Given that a sensitive topic, such as cannibalism, should not be propagated so openly.

Durj was premiered on the international film festival circuit and seems to have been well received.

For comparison in the UK the film was passed 15 uncut for disturbing scenes, bloody images:

 

Update: Unbanned

19th October 2019. See article from tribune.com.pk

The film has been cleared after a second viewing by the Pakistan's Central Censor Board, sources informed The Express Tribune.

Some of the really graphic scenes have been removed for obvious reasons, other than that the film is good to go, said a censor board official, requesting anonymity.

 

 

Offsite Article: That's a bit rich...


Link Here19th October 2019
Netflix dodges legal bid to halt release of The Laundromat about the Panama Papers

See article from hollywoodreporter.com

 

 

Offsite Article: Joker at the BBFC...


Link Here17th October 2019
We've had a lot of comments and questions about our classification for Joker - which we rated 15. We've published a case study which explains our decision in more depth. Spoiler warning though.

See article from bbfc.co.uk

 

 

Updated: King Tut vs Jokers...

OK which jokers posted warnings about Joker not being a kid's superhero film or not being suitable for incels?


Link Here10th October 2019
Full story: Parents TV Council...US moralists whinge at TV sex and violence
An AMC movie theater in Deseret, Utah seems to caused a bit of stir when it posted a warning bout the adult content of the new Joker film. The warning read:

Parental warning (this is not a joke), begins the message. Joker is Rated R and for good reason. There's lots of very, very rough language, brutal violence, and overall bad vibes.

It's a gritty, dark, and realistic Taxi Driver-esque depiction of one man's descent into madness. It's not for kids, and they won't like it, anyway.

[There's no Batman]

Images of the sign hit social media and then for some reason the theatre responded by going into denial and taking the poster down and tweeting:

So sorry for any confusion! This sign was not posted by us, and this is not our policy. The sign was removed as soon as it was found by the theatre team

US moralist campaigners of the Parents Television Council weighed in with a statement bemoaning the film as being unfit for children:

Along with the Alamo Drafthouse, and several movie critics, we want to warn parents about the extremely violent content in the Joker film that is being released nationwide this weekend. Despite its R-rating, parents may believe that this film is appropriate for kids given that it is an extension of the popular Batman franchise. Film critics have described the film's horrific violence committed by the Joker and even criticized the timing of a film that asks viewers to sympathize with one man's all-too-realistic decent into darkness.

We applaud Alamo for its unprecedented warning to parents about not taking their children to see this film because of its 'very, very rough language, brutal violence, and overall bad vibes.'

With the Joker , Hollywood continues its war on kids by turning a comic book-themed franchise into violence-porn. Scientific research has concluded that media violence is among the top three contributing factors to societal violence. Our own research has found that violence in comic book-themed TV shows is increasing.

Hollywood cannot have it both ways -- they cannot herald the entertainment they produce and distribute for its ability to change the world for good, while refuting the harmful impact it can have when the content is violent, sexually explicit, or profane.

Update: No incels

10th October 2019. See article from cinemablend.com

A prankster has been banned from the AMC theatre chain for life for posting fake posters suggesting that incels had been banned as a safety precaution.

Several US cinemas fell victim to pranksters who posted fake notices informing patrons that singles, specifically single males, would not be allowed inside Joker screenings.

One of the pranksters behind this ruse has now been banned from all AMC theaters for life as punishment.

As it turns out, this individual, who only identified himself as Payne when speaking to The Hollywood Reporter, put up a flyer, intending for it to be a joke referencing an old 4chan meme.

Payne's Twitter post started making the rounds, leading to someone named Elizabeth from AMC Guest Services to set the record straight and inform people that this policy did not exist, and that the flyers had been removed by theater employees.

Then on Monday, Payne posted a letter he received from AMC's vice president of security, informing him that he'd been spotted posting the flyer and that if he returned to any AMC locations, he'd be considered a trespasser and the involvement of law enforcement and arrest may result.

 

 

Offsite Article: 'I urge parents to ignore the R - it's a PG-13 movie in all the ways that matter'...


Link Here10th October 2019
Annabelle Comes Home. Now even some R rated horrors seem to be going for the bloodless PG-13 territory.

See article from birthmoviesdeath.com

 

 

Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls...

Just passed 12 uncut by the BBFC after years of being cut for a PG rating


Link Here3rd October 2019
Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls is a 1995 USA comedy adventure by Steve Oedekerk.
Starring Jim Carrey, Ian McNeice and Simon Callow. Youtube link BBFC link IMDb

Ace Ventura, emerging from self-imposed exile in a remote Himalayan hideaway, travels to Africa with explorer Fulton Greenwall to find a sacred bat which is told will avert a war between with Wachootoo and Wachati tribes. Of course, when Ace gets involved, all hell breaks loose...

The BBFC has just passed the film 12 uncut for moderate sex references, rude humour, comic violence, gore for an upcoming 2019 video release from Arrow Films.

For many years previously, the film has been released with cuts for a PG rating. Saying that the film was released uncut on a 12 rated Blu-ray double bill 2015 but it has taken until now for a 12  rated video version to appear on the BBFC website.

The film has always been uncut in the US albeit with a PG-13 rating.

Cutting Edge

Ace Ventura when Nature Calls
See the details of the previous cuts for PG in the Cutting Edge article
Ace Ventura 2: When Nature Calls
Comedy cuts at the BBFC

 

 

Joker...

He is a psychopath: has the 2019 Joker gone too far? The Guardian asks in anticipation of whipping up a little moral panic


Link Here1st October 2019
Full story: Batman Movies...A history of controversy
The Guardian writes:

Is it just me or is it getting crazier out there? Joaquin Phoenix's proto-Joker Arthur Fleck asks his psychologist in the new Joker movie. The real answer is both. Fleck is a man losing his grip on sanity, but the world out there is a powder keg of lawlessness, inequality, corruption, cuts and all-round despair. Joker's story is set around the early 1980s, but it consciously chimes with our own increasingly crazy present. These are tough times, the psychologist acknowledges. She might as well turn and wink to the camera.

It's no surprise that 2019's Joker -- while set to be a triumph, critically and commercially -- has raised concerns over its narrative. An early, leaked version of the script, plus the portrayal of Phoenix's character as a sad young man losing his grip on sanity (mental health problems, past trauma, failing comedy career, loneliness) has led to the film being aligned with so-called incel culture (involuntarily celibate men who are angry and misogynistic).

...Read the full article from theguardian.com

Clowns to the left of me, jokers to the right

The moral panic over Joker is a depressing throwback to video nasty hysteria.

See article from reprobatepress.com. By David Flint

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