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Another One Bites the Dust...

Malaysian censors cuts to Bohemian Rhapsody


Link Here 5th December 2018
Bohemian Rhapsody is a 2018 UK / USA music biography by Bryan Singer.
Starring Rami Malek, Joseph Mazzello and Mike Myers. BBFC link IMDb

Bohemian Rhapsody is a foot-stomping celebration of Queen, their music and their extraordinary lead singer Freddie Mercury. Freddie defied stereotypes and shattered convention to become one of the most beloved entertainers on the planet. The film traces the meteoric rise of the band through their iconic songs and revolutionary sound.

Initial reports from those who had seen Bohemian Rhapsody in theatres indicated the Malaysian Film Censorship Board (LPF) had cut up to 24 minutes of footage from the Freddie Mercury biopic, as homosexuality is banned under the country's sodomy laws.

However in reality the cuts totalled about 3 minutes. Censor board chairman Mohd Zamberi Abdul Aziz said that seven cuts involved muting 'bad words', while the four gay scenes involved cuts to men kissing each other, men rubbing each other, and a group of men in dresses partying in a mansion.

It's easy to see why audiences believed something more substantial was missing from the film. The Malaysian cut leaves major narrative holes in the film. Key scenes no longer make sense.

The most noticeable changes to Bohemian Rhapsody involve censoring intimacy between its queer male characters. The physical aspects of Freddie Mercury's relationship to Paul Prenter (Allen Leech) -- his personal manager and the film's antagonist -- are gone entirely. A meet-cute with future partner Jim Hutton (Aaron McCusker) is virtually incomprehensible.

As Zamberi told the Malay Mail, censors took the further step of removing a line in the credits mentioning that Mercury and Hutton lived a happy life until the iconic singer's 1991 death. It showed that they were in a gay relationship, the censor explained.

A line in which Mercury (Rami Malek) comes out to then-fiancee Mary Austin (Lucy Boynton) is removed from the film. I think I'm bisexual, he says. Austin insists he's gay, which is also cut.

While preparing for Queen's legendary performance at the 1985 Live Aid concert, the singer tells his bandmates that he's HIV-positive. I've got it, Mercury says. Got what? a group member asks. AIDS, he responds. The censors cut everything after I've got it.

 

 

Extract Repression in anybody's book...

10 years in Chinese prison for writing a homoerotic novel


Link Here 30th November 2018
Full story: Book Censorship in China...Offical book censors and self censorship

In an assault on freedom of expression, a court in China sentenced a successful novelist, Ms. Liu, to 10 years in prison on October 31 for including explicit homoerotic content in her work. The charge against her was making and selling obscene material for profit. Information about the case has just recently been circulated online, generating a widespread outcry on social media against censorship as well as the disproportionate and excessive severity of her sentence.

The writer, who uses the pen name Tianyi, was arrested in 2017, after the publication of her novel Occupy . Pornography is illegal in China . The 1997 penal code forbids depicting sexual acts except for medical or artistic purposes. According to police in Anhui Province, in eastern China, the book described obscene behavior between males, including violence, abuse, and humiliation.

...See the full article from hrw.org

 

 

Updated Maybe there should be an Oscar for the Best Censorship Drama...

Kenyan film maker sues the country's film censors and gets the film unbanned for 7 days in time to qualify for the Oscars


Link Here 24th September 2018
Rafiki is a 2018 Kenya / South Africa drama by Wanuri Kahiu.
Starring Patricia Amira, Muthoni Gathecha and Jimmy Gathu. IMDb

Banned by the Kenya Film Classification Board in April 2018. The KFCB claimed the film seeks to legitimize lesbian romance.

Rafiki, which means friend in Swahili,  is adapted from the 2007 Caine Prize-winning short story, Jambula Tree, by Ugandan writer Monica Arac Nyeko. It follows two close friends, Kena and Ziki, who eventually fall in love despite their families being on opposing sides of the political divide.

Wanuri Kahiu, the director of the banned film Rafiki is Suing Kenya's film censors to unblock the way for the film to qualify as contender for the Oscars. The suit demands that the local ban be lifted in time for her to submit the film to be considered for an Oscar. It's also pushing to change the law that has been used to ban popular films like The Wolf of Wall Street.

For Rafiki to be eligible for a Best Foreign Language award, it needs to be shown in Kenya before September 30, The Hollywood Reporter adds . If the selection committee is given permission to screen the film to submit it to the Academy, Rafiki could be the first Kenyan film to be nominated in that category

Wanuri Kahiu's Rafiki has received its due praise on the film festival circuit since her film was selected to make its world premiere at Cannes earlier this year-- making it the first Kenyan feature film to do so. However, the Kenya Film Classification Board banned the film, claiming that it seeks to legitimize lesbian romance.

Update: Make love not war, court organises a 7 day truce

22nd September 2018. See article from bbc.com

A Kenyan judge has lifted a ban on a film about a lesbian relationship - for a week. Judge Wilfrida Okwany decided to allow the screening of the film for seven days so that it could be submitted for the Oscars.

In order to be submitted to the Academy Awards, the film must have been publicly exhibited for at least seven consecutive days at a commercial motion picture venue.

In her ruling on Friday, Ms Okwany gave permission for the film to be shown to willing adults. She said she was not convinced that Kenya is such a weak society that its moral foundation will be shaken by seeing such a film.

But the head of the Kenya Film Classification Board, Ezekiel Mutua, was unhappy about the decision, claiming homosexuality is not our way of life.

The film's director Wanuri Kahiu, who appealed against the ban, was overjoyed with the latest decision.

The film's Twitter account announced that it will hold screenings in the Kenyan capital, Nairobi

Update: Popular

24th September 2018. See article

Rafiki, temporarily reprieved from being banned showed on Sunday to a cheering full house audience in Nairobi. The cinema showed on an additional screen after more than 450 people arrived.

Nairobi residents will be able to watch Rafiki during daytime-only screenings at the Prestige Cinema in the capital for a week

 



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