Archive for the ‘BBFC Decisions’ Category

Read more news.htm at MelonFarmers.co.uk

lambeth council logo Eight local councils have now decided to overturn a film’s BBFC 15 age rating so younger viewers can watch it.The documentary A Northern Soul was rated 15 by the BBFC for strong language. The BBFC commented:

It  includes around 20 uses of strong language and therefore exceeds by some margin anything we have ever permitted at 12A.

The film follows Steve, who struggles to make ends meet as he tries to teach hip-hop to children in Hull schools with his Beats Bus.

So far, licensing committees in Hull, Lambeth, Leeds, Liverpool, Sheffield, Southampton, Hackney and Calderdale have downgraded A Northern Soul from a 15 to a 12A.

Phil Bates, licensing manager at Southampton City Council, said he viewed the film differently because it’s a documentary rather than a drama. He explained:

We can see why BBFC awarded a 15 rating, although equally we can see why other authorities have also granted it a 12A.

The use of profane language is fairly infrequent, some of it was used at a time of stress but there were occasions when it was used as everyday language. As this is a fly-on-the-wall style film, showing life as it is, rather than a scripted film where the language is used for effect, we felt the film warranted a 12A.

Director Sean McAllister spoke of the councils’ decisions: I think they’re responding as human beings. He added that Steve’s language was credible and real and culturally embedded within how he speaks. He continued:

The irony is that the motivation for making this film and the heart of why this film should be seen has got the thing censored.

When people actually see it, everyone’s saying ‘where’s the swearing?’ They [the BBFC] have done a word count, which is an F count, and they’ve simply censored it based on that. And they’ve got to get over that.

When in Mission Impossible people are having their heads blown off and 12As are being granted, the whole thing is hypocritical, backward and needs reassessing. Language not used for effect

The BBFC repeated its mantra that its classification guidelines are the result of a large scale public consultation designed to reflect broad public opinion across the UK. Bit in reality the ‘large scale’ part of its public consultation asks a few broad brush questions about whether people generally agree with the BBFC about ratings. The questions do not offer any more nuanced insight into what people think about swearing in the context of everyday parlance of some working people.

Advertisements
Read more bw.htm at MelonFarmers.co.uk

House of Commons logo B usiness of the House

The House of Commons on 6th September

Diana R. Johnson Labour, Kingston upon Hull North

I am sure, Mr Speaker, that you will have seen the 2010 film The King’s Speech , portraying George VI. It contained 11 uses of the F-word and was granted a classification of 12A. I recently saw the highly rated documentary A Northern Soul by Hull film-maker Sean McAllister. Its main character uses the F-word 14 times and it is heard 19 times in total in the film. None of it was aggressive or gratuitous, and the film simply portrays the life of a working-class Hull man and his work helping local children, but it has been given a 15 certificate nationally. May we therefore have a debate about whether there is a class bias in the way censors seek to protect younger teenagers from the reality and language that many experience in their lives every day?

Andrea Leadsom Lord President of the Council and Leader of the House of Commons

The hon. Lady raises a genuinely interesting point, and I urge her to seek an Adjournment debate so she can discuss it with Ministers and then take it forward.

Read more me_movies.htm at MelonFarmers.co.uk

Poster Padmavati 2017 Sanjay Leela Bhansali Padmavati is a 2017 India historical romance by Sanjay Leela Bhansali.
Starring Deepika Padukone, Ranveer Singh and Shahid Kapoor. BBFC link IMDb

Rani Padmavati (aka Padmini) is said to be one of the most beautiful women to ever exist. This real life story is epitome of Love and sacrifice between Rajput Queen Padmavati and Rana Rawal Ratan Singh, the Rajput ruler of Mewar. Their perfect life took unfortunate turn when Allauddin Khilji’s lustful eyes gazed upon Queen Padmavati. Alauddin Khilji is known as one of the most brutal rulers of the Khilji dynasty, who ascended the throne by killing his father-in-law, his brother-in-laws and their uncles. He was known for attacking states, only for their land and women. And, the motive behind the attack on Mewar was none other than royal Rani Padmavati. Chittorgarh fort, today, stands as an epitome of the true Rajputana spirit, loyalty, fidelity and bravery and a symbol of women power.

Producers of a Bollywood period epic have indefinitely delayed its release following countrywide protests by Hindu right-wing and caste groups.

The epic in Awadhi language extols the virtue of Padmavati who committed sati, the practice of a widow immolating herself on her husband’s funeral pyre, to protect her honour from the invading Muslim emperor Khilji who had killed her husband, the Rajput king, in a battle.

Sati is believed to have originated some 700 years ago among the ruling class or Rajputs in India. The Rajput women burnt themselves after their men were defeated in battles to avoid being taken by the victors. But it came to be seen as a measure of wifely devotion in later years. The custom was outlawed by India’s British rulers in 1829 following demands by Indian reformers.

Historians point out that Jayasi’s epic ballad about a Muslim emperor attacking a kingdom smitten by the beauty of a Hindu queen was written in the 16th Century, more than 200 years after the historical record of the invasion. They say the folklore around Padmavati have also been problematic as they have glorified sati.

Rumours of a scene in the film of the Muslim king dreaming of getting romantic with the Hindu queen enraged many like the Rajput Karnik Sena, a fringe caste group, who have called for the film to be banned. Director Bhansali has said the film does not feature such dream sequence at all .

Last week, the group, which had disrupted the shooting and slapped Bhansali on the set of the film earlier this year, vandalised cinemas , and threatened to chop off Padukone’s nose, referring to a story in the epic Ramayana where a character has her nose chopped off as punishment.

Rajput community members have burnt effigies of Bhansali and sought a ban of the film. Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje has said it should not be released until necessary changes are made so that sentiments of any community are not hurt.

A regional leader of the BJP at the weekend announced a reward of nearly $1.5m for anyone beheading Bhansali and Padukone .

Update: BBFC Rating

BBFC logo 23rd November 2017. See article from bbfc.co.uk

The BBFC has published its rating for the British cinema release of Padmavati. The film is rated 12A uncut for moderate violence, injury detail.

Update: Former Indian film censor claims that the BBFC is acting illegally in passing the film for UK release

24th November 2017 See article from timesnownews.com

pahlaj-nihalaniFormer Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) chairman Pahlaj Nihalani has claimed that the BBFC decision of certifying the movie Padmavati is illegal.

In an interview with ANI, Nihalani said that for a film to get certification overseas, it’s a must that it is passed by the Indian Censor Board. If they’ve got a thumbs up from Britain without even sending the film, it’s against the law.

He added that the BBC has no control over the release of an Indian film. If the film is released outside India, it will eventually be pirated to India, he said.

Meanwhile, a petition seeking orders to the makers to not release the film outside India on December 1, has been filed in the Supreme Court.

Back home, Padmavati has been postponed for an indefinite period of time owing to the furious protests against it by the fringe groups – Rajasthan-based Rajput Karni Sena in particular. The groups are protesting an alleged romantic sequence between Padmavati (based on the legend of Rani Padmini of Chittorgarh) and Mughal Emperor Alauddin Khilji. Some fanatic groups are also incensed with the fact that Rani Padmavati has been shown dancing in the film asserting that Rajput maharanis never danced in front of anyone.

Update: Violent Indian nationalists call for British cinemas to be burnt down

24th November 2017 See  article from independent.co.uk

rajput karni sena white logoBritish cinemas that screen a controversial new Bollywood blockbuster should be burned down, the leader of a hardline Hindu nationalist group has claimed.

Members of the Rajput Karni Sena, a group associated with the warrior Rajput caste, claim it misrepresents history by depicting a love affair between the queen and a Muslim invader. The group is further upset that the queen’s midriff is exposed in a song sequence.

Now the leader of Rajput Karni Sena, Sukhdev Singh has called for action to be taken in the UK. He told Republic TV:

I call on Hindus in the UK and particularly my community brothers to protest against the screening of the film there. I have told them any cinema hall which screens the movie will be burnt.

Read more latest.htm at MelonFarmers.co.uk

Ballerina DVD Ballerina (aka Leap!) is a 2016 France / Canada children’s musical cartoon by Eric Summer and Éric Warin.
Starring Elle Fanning, Dane DeHaan and Maddie Ziegler. BBFC link IMDb

Set in 1879 Paris. An orphan girl dreams of becoming a ballerina and flees her rural Brittany for Paris, where she passes for someone else and accedes to the position of pupil at the Grand Opera house.

UK:  A cut Edited Version was passed U uncut for mild threat for:

UK:  The Uncut Version was passed PG for infrequent mild bad language for:

  • 2017 Entertainment One video

The BBFC Insight includes the following comment about the PG rated version that is not in the U rated version.

There is a single use of mild bad language (‘bitch’) in the lyrics of a song playing in the background of one scene.

Localised versions have been released for the UK and US and this may explain the different U and PG rated versions.

Read more News: Latest Cuts at MelonFarmers.co.uk

Poster Fifty Shades of Black 2016 Michael Tiddes Fifty Shades of Black is a 2016 USA comedy by Michael Tiddes.
Starring Marlon Wayans, Kali Hawk and Fred Willard. Youtube link BBFC link IMDb

An inexperienced college student meets a wealthy businessman whose sexual practices put a strain on their relationship.

It was original passed 18 uncut for cinema for very strong sex references for:

The film distributors appealed to the BBFC for a reconsideration of a 15 rating. The BBFC agreed, commenting:

This work was originally classified 18 with cuts on 27/01/2016. This determination was formally reconsidered by the BBFC at the request of the submitting company. The BBFC carefully considered the arguments put forward by the submitting company, looked again at the relevant submitted material, and concluded that a revision to the original determination was appropriate.

The film is now passed 15 uncut for strong sex references.

Read more News: Latest Cuts at MelonFarmers.co.uk

BBFC logo Fifty Shades of Grey is a 2015 USA romance by Sam Taylor-Johnson.
Starring Dakota Johnson, Jamie Dornan and Jennifer Ehle. Youtube link BBFC link IMDb

Literature student Anastasia Steele’s life changes forever when she meets handsome, yet tormented, billionaire Christian Grey.

The BBFC has now passed the cinema release as 18 uncut for string sex.

The BBFC adds in its Insight comment:

The film contains strong sex and nudity, along with the portrayal of erotic role play based on domination, submission and sado-masochistic practices. There are also strong verbal references to such practices and the instruments used.

No doubt the distributors are pleased as US Hollywood films are very restrictive on the amount of sex allowed and there was a fear that the film was heading towards 15 territory.

For comparison, other countries have rated the film as follows:

  • US: R rated (17A in UK ratings terminology) for strong sexual content including dialogue, some unusual behavior and graphic nudity, and for language.
  • Australia: rated MA15+ (15A in UK ratings terminology) for strong sex scenes, sexual themes and nudity
  • Czech Republic: 15
  • Sweden: 15
Read more News: Latest Cuts at MelonFarmers.co.uk

Slaughterhouse Blu ray Joe B Barton Slaughterhouse is a 1987 USA comedy horror by Rick Roessler.
Starring Joe B Barton, Don Barrett and Sherry Leigh. Youtube link BBFC link IMDb UK: Passed 18 uncut for strong bloody violence, gore, threat with all previous cuts waived for:

  • 2015 88 Films R0 Blu-ray at UK Amazon released on 23rd February 2015

UK Censorship History

Heavily cut by the BBFC for 1989 VHS. Later uncut for 2015 Blu-ray. Uncut and MPAA R rated in the US.

See further details at Melon Farmers Film Cuts: Slaughterhouse

Promotional Material

If you loved THE TEXAS CHAIN SAW MASSACRE and THE HILLS HAVE EYES then you are sure to pig-out with the sicko-shocks of eighties fright-favourite SLAUGHTERHOUSE. This corpse-ridden classic introduces one of the screen s most memorable madmen in Buddy a cleaver-wielding backwoods baddie who, along with his father Lester, doesn t take kindly to trespassers. Buddy was brought up killing and packing meat, but now his rage turns to teens and market-capitalists seeking to buy-out his dad s property. The end result is a tongue-in-cheek terror totem that returns from the VHS vaults to BluRay in this great new HD master scanned from the original negative by director Rick Roessler!

Extras:
All Region Codes
Booklet Notes by Calum Waddell
Audio Commentary with director Rick Roessler
More TBC