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Amityville Horror 4 and 6...

The BBFC reduces the rating of 2 films in the series from 18 to 15


Link Here30th June 2021
  Amityville 4 The Evil Escapes is a 1989 USA horror by Sandor Stern
Starring Patty Duke, Jane Wyatt and Fredric Lehne BBFC link 2020 IMDb

The demonic force lurking in Amityville for over 300 years escapes to a remote California mansion. It encounters a struggling family living together by uncertain means. The beast manipulates a little girl by manifesting itself in the form of her dead father. Soon it will be able to possess her completely... is it too late for a young priest to defeat the demon and end the curse?

UK: Passed 15 uncut for strong supernatural threat, bloody images, violence:
  • 2021 Screenbound Pictures Ltd video
Amityville 1992 - It's About Time is a 1992 USA horror by Tony Randel
Starring Stephen Macht, Shawn Weatherly and Megan Ward BBFC link 2020 IMDb

An architect brings home a mysterious old clock, not knowing that it's haunted by the demonic presence of the Amityville house. Soon, the clock begins to alter time and space and starts to possess members of the household.

UK: Passed 15 uncut for strong gore, violence, threat, language, sexual threat, sex:
  • 2021 Screenbound Pictures Ltd video

Both films have had previous 18 ratings reduced by the BBFC to the current 15 ratings.

 

 

Commented: A tale of modern cultural sensitivities failing to better the simpler, more tolerant ways of old...

The BBFC re-rates Local Hero from PG to 12A over implied strong language


Link Here28th June 2021
Local Hero is a 1983 UK comedy drama by Bill Forsyth
Starring Burt Lancaster, Peter Riegert and Fulton Mackay BBFC link 2020 IMDb
The film has just been uprated from PG to 12A in 2021 with the BBFC citing 'infrequent partial use of strong language (eg "motherfu...")'.

The BBFC changed its strong language policy in 2021 to treat obscured strong language as if it had been fully voiced.

Summary Notes

An American oil company has plans for a new refinery and sends someone to Scotland to buy up an entire village, but things don't go as expected.

UK: Passed 12A uncut for implied strong language, moderate sex references:
  • 2021 cinema release

 

Update: Motherfu...ing Stupidity: The BBFC And 'Implied Language'

28th June 2021. See article from reprobatepress.com

The British censor's curious decision to treat implied swearing no differently than if the actual word had been used.

 

 

You can't film that!...

Generating hype for a US film about the Christchurch mosque killings


Link Here13th June 2021
They Are Us is a 2021 USA film
Starring Rose Byrne, JumondR Rondaii and Ametha Randall IMDb

The producer of a movie about the Christchurch terror attacks in New Zealand has pulled out of the project after mounting criticism over the film. Philippa Campbell apologised for her involvement and said she had not realised the hurt the film would cause. She said:

I have listened to the concerns raised over recent days and I have heard the strength of people's views. I now agree that the events of 15 March 2019 are too raw for film at this time and do not wish to be involved with a project that is causing such distress.

They Are Us will focus on Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern's role during the 2019 shooting at two Christchurch mosques. Ardern herself has criticised the project as poorly timed and focused on the wrong subject. She said:

In my view, which is a personal view, it feels very soon and very raw for New Zealand. And while there are so many stories that should be told at some point, I don't consider mine to be one of them.

New Zealand Muslims have also criticised the film for pursuing a white saviour narrative by focusing on Ardern rather than the victims. A petition from the National Islamic Youth Association asking for the movie to be cancelled has gathered almost 60,000 signatures, arguing the film would sideline the victims and survivors and instead centres on the response of a white woman.

 Lianne Dalziel, mayor of Christchurch, where the attacks took place, said film crews would not be welcome in her city. She said:

I'm just so outraged that they even think that this is an appropriate thing to do.

 

 

Offsite Article: Oops!...


Link Here12th June 2021
In the 1970s US Lutherans decided to commission a movie about mistreating the elderly. They chose a promising young filmmaker George A Romero to direct. They then banned the resulting film for 50 years

See article from patheos.com

 

 

Absurd and ridiculous...

Bangladeshi film directors want to set themselves up as an additional body of censors


Link Here11th June 2021
The Bangladesh Film Directors' Association's has published a proposal to run all films through an approval process under its guidance before finally submitting to Bangladesh Film Censor Board.

Other film organisations are not so impressed. Bangladesh Short Film Forum, Bangladesh Film Society, Bangladesh Film Institute, Dhaka DocLab, Bangladesh Documentary Council and Film without Film all raised concerns over the proposal. In a joint statement they said that the proposal seem absurd and ridiculous as they found no logical ground for a film to obtain a private organisation's authorisation before it is submitted to the censor board.

The statement also said that there is no rational explanation why the government grant-winning film must be released in 20 cinemas across the country and asked why public money should be spent on commercial films.

 

 

Use of strong language is on the rise...

and according to the BBFC, parents want children protected


Link Here9th June 2021
The BBFC has released a new survey into attitudes towards swearing which shows that while the use of strong language is on the rise, parents are keen to protect their children and do not want to see increased use of strong language in media content.

The survey, carried out by Magenta, was commissioned to find out if parents would accept more frequent uses of strong ('fuck') and very strong language ('cunt') at the 12 and 15 categories, and to understand people's opinions and use of these words in their lives. The report showed that 60% say swearing is part of their daily life, with 30% saying they use strong language more than five years ago.

The survey showed that people think that the BBFC is getting it right when it comes to classification of strong and very strong language in films and TV content. People feel that there is a time and a place for using stronger language, and therefore do not want to see an increase in strong and very strong language at the 12 category.

61% agree that while they are comfortable using strong language with friends they refrain from doing so if children can hear. Only 20% parents say they're comfortable swearing in front of children under 16 at home because they are keen to shield their kids as long as possible.

The survey showed that how words are said raises more concerns than what is said. Language feels more problematic and/or adult when it is; directly targeted at an individual, or used in an aggressive way, especially when used by men towards women; used in a sexual context; used in a sexually violent way or referencing abuse, rape, coercion, or sexually aggressive behaviour.

David Austin, Chief Executive of the BBFC, said:

Children are watching more content on multiple screens, and their parents want to protect them from strong and very strong language wherever they can and for as long as possible. Parents told us they are keen for media industries to share the responsibility - and that's where we come in. Very strong language retains an innate shock value, and for some remains the last taboo. While it can occur in a variety of contexts, including comic and colloquial, it has a particularly distressing potency when used towards women - so it's reassuring to hear people think we are getting it right when it comes to classifying these words.

For the first time, the BBFC has also published a guide to what terms parents can expect to hear in films and TV shows in the U, PG and 12A/12 categories. The guide lays out common words that are permitted at the junior categories, and also includes sections on Hindi language.

David Austin added:

This research has underpinned our knowledge that parents are the gatekeepers when it comes to language at the lower age ratings, U, PG and 12A/12. This is why we've launched our guide to terms at the junior categories, so that parents can feel empowered and confident when choosing content that is right for their families.

Despite parents being keen to protect their children for as long as possible, there's a clear generational divide when it comes to swearing, with 46% of Gen Zs frequently using strong language daily, compared to only 12% of 55-64 year olds and 12% of over 65s. 25% of 16-24 year olds say they would never use strong language in public, compared to75% of over 65s.

When it comes to acronyms - for example WTF - people felt that the meaning is rarely lost on viewers, including children. In most cases, they are treated as if the word were spoken in full. Therefore, the BBFC will classify acronyms as if they are a use of strong language in full.

The BBFC's list of language vs age rating is as follows

U'damn', 'hell', 'God', 'Jesus Christ'. We know that some people find these words particularly offensive, but our research shows us that the majority of parents are comfortable with their children hearing them in U rated films.

'butt', 'jerk'.

And, depending on the context, you may also hear the word 'screw' if it is used instead of 'messed up', eg. 'I screwed up'.

PGAt PG, we only allow mild bad language. If words are used in an aggressive or very frequent way, then this might result in the content being rated higher.

'bloody', 'bugger', 'son of a bitch', 'shit', 'arsehole', 'bastard',

'bollocks', 'piss', 'crap', 'arse', 'ass', 'sod', 'git', 'arse'.

12A12APrick, wanker, twat, bitch, whore, slag, slut, cock,

Depending on context, frequency, and tone: fuck'

 

 

The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It...

Both the 18 rated uncut version and the 15 rated cut version have been passed by the BBFC for home video


Link Here8th June 2021
The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It is a 2021 USA horror mystery thriller by Michael Chaves
Starring Vera Farmiga, Patrick Wilson and Julian Hilliard BBFC link 2020 IMDb
Uncut and MPA R rated in the US. This was initially rated 18 uncut, by the BBFC but the distributors preferred a cut 15 rated version for 2021 cinema release. The film is rated 16 uncut  by IFCO for Irish cinema release.

Both the uncut 18 rated version and the cut 15 rated have just been passed for home video release but it is not yet clear which versions will be released on which formats.

Summary Notes

A chilling story of terror, murder and unknown evil that shocked even experienced real-life paranormal investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren. One of the most sensational cases from their files, it starts with a fight for the soul of a young boy, then takes them beyond anything they'd ever seen before, to mark the first time in U.S. history that a murder suspect would claim demonic possession as a defense.

Versions

BBFC cut
category cuts
cut:  
run: 113m
pal: 108m
15UK: The UK edit was passed 15 for strong threat, horror, violence after BBFC category cuts:
  • 2021 Warner Bros Entertainment UK Ltd video
  • 2021 cinema release

The BBFC commented:

The distributor chose to reduce bloody injury detail in a suicide scene in order to obtain a 15 classification. An uncut 18 classification was available.

Of course the BBFC is referring to vertical wrist slitting which is disallowed at 15.

BBFC uncut
uncut
run: 113m
pal: 108m
18

Ireland 16
Ireland

MPAA R

UK: Passed 18 uncut for strong injury detail, horror:
  • 2021 Warner Bros Entertainment UK Ltd video
  • 2021 cinema release, unreleased as the distributors opted for a cut 15 release

Ireland: Rated 16 uncut for very strong gory violence.

It is reported that the Irish 16 rated cinema release is the uncut version running at 111:44s

US: Uncut and MPA R rated for terror, violence and some disturbing images.

 

 

Attraction 2: Invasion...

15 rated video releases suggests that last year's 12A rated cinema release was cut for language


Link Here3rd June 2021
Attraction 2: Invasion is a 2020 Russia action Sci-Fi film by fedor bondarchuk
Starring Irina Starshenbaum, Rinal Mukhametov and Alexander Petrov BBFC link 2020 IMDb
The subtitled 2020 cinema release was 12A rated by the BBFC  but the dubbed 2021 home video release was 15 rated. It seems that that the word 'motherfucker' didn't make it to the subtitles.

Summary Notes

With the fall of the alien ship Julia's life changed, now three years later mankind is about to experience new encounter.

Versions

BBFC uncut
uncut
run: 133m
pal: 128m
15UK: Passed 15 uncut for strong language:
  • 2021 4Digital [English language] video
The BBFC explained the 12A rating:

There is strong language, 'fuck', 'motherfucker'

cut
pre-cut
run: 133:39s
pal: 128:18s
12AUK: A presumably cut version was passed 12A for moderate bloody violence, threat, infrequent strong language:
  • 2020 [Russian language] cinema release
The BBFC explained the 12A rating:

There is infrequent use of strong language, 'fuck'.

So compared with the video version it seems that the word 'motherfucker' has been removed from the cinema version.

 

 

Les Miserables...

French anti-smoking campaigners call for less smoking in French movies


Link Here26th May 2021
Full story: Adult Rating for Smoking...Anti-smoking lobby for 18 for smoking in films
Anti-smoking campaigners claim that French cinema is addicted to showing smoking on screen. A new survey claims smoking features in nearly all the country's films.

The French League Against Cancer says smoking gets 2.6 minutes of screen time on average per film. Tobacco remains quasi-ubiquitous in French films, the League says. However the survey stretches definitions so as to include the presence of ashtrays and of cigarettes, or a character talking about smoking.

The group claims the exposure glamorises smoking and is calling for new measures to cut down the amount shown in movies. A spokesman explained that the group wants to restrict cultural creation. A spokesperson explains:

We do not want to interfere in cultural creation ...BUT... we do not believe that tobacco smoking adds to the character of movies.

But some prominent French filmmakers are aghast at the suggestion that they could be restricted from depicting tobacco use. Mathieu Kassovitz, the award-winning director of La Haine and star of Am39lie, told the BBC:

Movies are not there to be role models - they are there to show what society is,. We have cigarettes in real life so they should be in movies too.

He also pointed out that smoking is not always shown in a positive light.

 

 

No respect...

Britbox adds a silly trigger warning to Da Ali G Show and Keeping Up Appearances


Link Here20th May 2021
Full story: UK Internet streaming censorship ...UK catch-up and US internet streaming
Woke Britbox bosses have added a trigger warning to Sacha Baron Cohen's Da Ali G Show.

The Streaming platform is warning viewers sensitive to racist terms. Viewers are warned episodes contain crude humour, including racist terms which may offend, sexual references and strong language.

The show first aired on Channel 4 in 2000. Cohen won a string of awards playing the wannabe urban rapper and spoof interviewer for several years.

The Sun quotes a TV insider saying:

The warning will be greeted with disbelief by anyone who watched the original series which was almost universally liked.

There were some voices who criticised the show for allowing people to laugh at black, urban street culture, but the majority of viewers thought Ali G was hilarious.

The classic comedy Keeping Up Appearances, which originally ran from 1990 to 1995, has also suffered similar treatment by Britbox.  A trigger warning has been prefixed saying that episodes contain language and attitudes of the era that may offend.

The Sun speculates that the offending lines were about Polish imigrants and phrases such as bent as a 4 note.

Offsite Comment: Is it cos I is racist?

20th May 2021. See article from spiked-online.com

Da Ali G Show, an anti-racist satire, has been slapped with content warnings about its racist content.

 

 

The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It...

Endemic censorship, the latest film cut for its UK cinema release


Link Here18th May 2021
The Conjuring: The Devil Made Me Do It is a 2021 USA horror mystery thriller by Michael Chaves
Starring Vera Farmiga, Patrick Wilson and Julian Hilliard BBFC link 2020 IMDb
Uncut and MPA R rated in the US. This was initially rated 18 uncut, by the BBFC but the distributors preferred a cut 15 rated version for 2021 cinema release. The film is rated 16 uncut by IFCO for Irish cinema release.

Summary Notes

A chilling story of terror, murder and unknown evil that shocked even experienced real-life paranormal investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren. One of the most sensational cases from their files, it starts with a fight for the soul of a young boy, then takes them beyond anything they'd ever seen before, to mark the first time in U.S. history that a murder suspect would claim demonic possession as a defense.

Versions

BBFC cut
category cuts
cut:  
run: 113m
pal: 108m
15UK: Passed 15 for strong threat, horror, violence after BBFC category cuts:
  • 2021 cinema release

The BBFC commented:

The distributor chose to reduce bloody injury detail in a suicide scene in order to obtain a 15 classification. An uncut 18 classification was available.

Of course the BBFC is referring to vertical wrist slitting which is disallowed at 15.

BBFC uncut
uncut
run: 113m
pal: 108m
18

Ireland 16
Ireland

MPAA R

UK: Passed 18 uncut for strong injury detail, horror:
  • 2021 cinema release, unreleased as the distributors opted for a cut 15 release

Ireland: Rated 16 uncut for very strong gory violence.

It is reported that the Irish 16 rated cinema release is the uncut version running at 111:44s

US: Uncut and MPA R rated for terror, violence and some disturbing images.

 

 

Don't Call Me Junior...

Historical artefacts at the BBFC claim that Indiana Jones should be 12 rated


Link Here11th May 2021
The BBFC has just re-rated two Indiana Jones films as 12A compared with all previous releases being PG.

Raiders Of The Lost Ark is a 1981 USA / UK action adventure by Steven Spielberg
Starring Harrison Ford, Karen Allen and Paul Freeman BBFC link 2020 IMDb

A 2021 cinema release has been passed 12A uncut for moderate violence, threat, horror.

Indiana Jones And The Last Crusade is a 1989 USA / UK action adventure by Steven Spielberg
Starring Harrison Ford, Sean Connery and Alison Doody BBFC link 2020 IMDb

  A 2021 cinema release has been passed 12A uncut for moderate violence, horror, threat.

It seems that the BBFC is inflating ratings, especially when there is  some sort of fashionably woke concern. Perhaps parents will now subtract a rating level to get a more realistic rating estimate.

 

 

Ascendant...

Australian age rating for movie lowered on appeal


Link Here27th April 2021
Full story: Movies Cut in Australia...Cut by the film censor, often for a lower rating

Ascendant is a 2021 Australia Sci-Fi mystery fantasy by Antaine Furlong (as Anthony Furlong)
Starring Charlotte Best, Jonny Pasvolsky and Susan Prior IMDb

A young environmentalist wakes, trapped, kidnapped in the elevator of a super high-rise building at the mercy of her tormentors

The original age rating from the Australian Censorship Board of MA15+ for strong themes and violence was reduced on appeal to M for mature fantasy themes, violence and blood detail. Note that MA 15+ would be likened to a 15A in UK terms whereas M would be likened to a PG-15 in US terms.

Australia's Classification Review Board explained:

In the Classification Review Board's opinion, Ascendant warrants an M classification because the themes and violence can be accommodated within context. The other classifiable elements can be accommodated at lower classifications.

It is the view of the Classification Review Board that the themes and violence within Ascendant were justified within the context of a fantasy narrative, and within this context they were of moderate impact.

It is for the above reasons, that the Classification Review Board has decided Ascendant warrants an M classification as the impact of its classifiable elements is no higher than moderate.

 

 

Rocky IV...

MPA gives a PG-13 rating to a new Director's Cut


Link Here19th April 2021

Rocky IV is a 1985 USA sport drama by Sylvester Stallone.
Starring Sylvester Stallone, Talia Shire and Burt Young. IMDb

Director Sylvester Stallone produced a PG-13 rated Director's Cut in 2021, whereas the original was PG rated.

The Director's Cut has been rated PG-13 for violent sports action and brief strong language.

The MPA notes: EDITED VERSION. CONTENT IS DIFFERENT FROM "PG" RATED VERSION, BULLETIN NO. 876 (1985).

Summary Notes

Rocky Balboa accompanies his friend Apollo Creed to the ring in a boxing match against a Russian Boxer named Ivan Drago. Drago is too strong for Creed, and unfortunately kills him in his match. Balboa blames himself for Creed's death and is determined to defeat Drago in a boxing match. He gains the help of Creed's former manager, Duke and travels to U.S.S.R. to take on Drago.

United Artists Releasing

 

 

Unappealing film censorship...

The Indian government has decided to disband the film censorship appeals board


Link Here10th April 2021
Full story: Film Censorship in India...CBFC: Film censors and their cuts
India's film makers are discussing a decision by the Indian government's to abolish the Film Certification Appellate Tribunal (FCAT).

The FCAT was set up in 1983 by India's Ministry of Information and Broadcasting to hear appeals by filmmakers aggrieved by the decision of the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC).

With its headquarters in the capital, New Delhi, the FCAT was headed by a chairperson and had four other members, including a secretary appointed by the Indian government.

In its order earlier this week, the government said the high court and not the FCAT will now hear the appeals by filmmakers who do not agree with the CBFC's suggestions or certificates for their films.

The move has made Indian filmmakers, mainly in Mumbai-based Bollywood, angry and anxious. Alankrita Shrivastava, director of feminist film Lipstick Under My Burkha , told Al Jazeera the abolition of FCAT will make filmmakers like her more vulnerable. The director said:

If there is a disagreement with the decision of the censor board, filmmakers will have to go directly to the high court. This may cause long delays, meaning a greater financial burden on filmmakers. It is a setback for artistic freedom.

 

 

Italy ends censorship of films on moral and religious grounds...

Filmmakers will instead self classify their own movies with age ratings


Link Here 7th April 2021

Born in 1914 at the dawn of cinema, Italy's censorship law felled some cinematic giants including Last Tango in Paris , but is now set to be awarded a 'rejected' rating, as unsuitable for a modern audience.

Film censorship has been abolished, announced culture minister Dario Franceschini in a statement:

The system of controls and interventions that still allow the state to intervene in the freedom of artists has been definitively ended.

As a result, it will now no longer be possible to block the release of a new film or demand edits for moral or religious reasons.

Filmmakers will instead classify their own movies with an age rating. Their decisions will be audited by a new commission made up of 49 members chosen from the film industry, but will be experts in education and animal rights.

According to a survey by Cinecensura , an online exhibition promoted by the culture ministry, 274 Italian films, 130 American movies and 321 from other countries have been banned in Italy since 1944. More than 10,000 were cut in some way, including works by directors such as Federico Fellini. However the last major case of censorship was in 1998 with the blasphemous and grotesque Toto Who Lived Twice , which was strongly criticised by Catholics.


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