Bohemian Rhapsody is a 2018 UK / USA music biography by Bryan Singer.
Starring Rami Malek, Joseph Mazzello and Mike Myers.
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.