As for society as a whole, what it got from the sexual revolution was a widespread eroticisation that persists to this day. Suddenly, in the Seventies sex was everywhere, not just in the strip clubs and sex shops of Soho, but in mainstream
news reports, in cinemas, in paperback bestsellers and on the television screens.
The blatant smut of Benny Hill's television spectaculars, with their cast of nubile young women in suspenders, also represented something new on television that many middle-class families had never seen before.
As for the film industry, with audiences in free-fall because of television, producers concluded that only more and more explicit material would get people back into the cinemas.
The outpouring of X-rated filth that followed claimed at least one victim. The official film censor, John Trevelyan, could take no more and gave up his job. I am simply sickened , he said, by having to put in days filled from dawn till
dusk with the sight and sound of human copulation.
And that was before Ken Russell's The Devils , Sam Peckinpah's Straw Dogs and Stanley Kubrick's A Clockwork Orange caused further outrage with their vivid portrayals of sex and violence.
Possibly more insidious than even these were the so-called sex comedies, perhaps the most embarrassing British cultural products of the decade. Between 1971 and 1975, studios pumped out a staggering 43 examples, from Secrets Of A Door-to-Door
Salesman and Can You Keep it Up For A Week? to Confessions Of A Driving Instructor and Adventures of a Plumber's Mate.
Hundreds of thousands of people paid good money to see these alleged comedies.
Many ran in provincial cinemas for months on end. With their world of perky, carefree housewives and lecherous young men, of suburban sex romps and ever-available dolly birds, they were said to tap a rich seam of bawdy vulgarity in British
working-class humour, from seaside postcards to the Carry On films.
Suddenly, in the Seventies sex was everywhere, not just in the strip clubs and sex shops of Soho, but in mainstream news reports, in cinemas and on the television screens
From the off, please let me point out this will contain spoilers about the film in question. In order to make my point valid I will have to use examples from the film.
Against all my better judgments I've just sat through an uncut print of A Serbian Film . I say my better judgments, because for me these (I hate this term) torture porn films, hold absolutely no interest at all. How
they can be branded horror films is beyond me. To me, horror is something that scares you, and makes you jump, not offends you. Anyway that's purely academic, back on point, I was lucky enough to see an uncut print of A Serbian Film , now
for a lot of you this will seem like nothing special, but here in the UK, it's been trimmed by just under 4 mins. I've yet to see the BBFC approved print, but if all they have done is simply lessen the impact of scenes, this will still upset a
lot of people.
That being said, I can certainly understand the BBFC's point. While I'm no fan of censorship (I wouldn't be on here if I was), I do believe that a metaphorical line should be drawn in the sand, especially when dealing
with children and sex in films. Even to this day, I'm still quite edgy around Larry Clarke's Kids . Which brings me onto the big problem with A Serbian Film . The use of children. While one scene involves newborn porn (sex with a
baby) , it does look very fake, and some might even say it's meant to, as it's supposed to be a metaphor and blah blah blah. The scene that really did make me think the BBFC had a point was a joint rape, involving two sheet covered bodies,
our main character, Milos, and another man (who's masked) raping them. While this is not shocking as such, what is revealed later in the scene will be too much for some people, as it turns out the masked man, is Milos' brother (a sheriff), who's
raping Milos' wife, and Milos is in fact raping his own (heavily drugged) young son. While you don't actually see anything as such, the repeat viewings could be seen as being titillating and arousing for certain viewers. Whether this scene is one
of the 49 cuts I can't say, but I'd be surprised if theirs not a few in their, as it does suggest you can easily drug and anally rape a child, and not have to look at them.
Although, their are a lot of violent sex scenes, I think the one the BBFC will have had a problem with, is suffocation via fellatio. One of the support characters (having had her teeth knocked out), is forced to have a penis
rammed down her throat resulting in her suffocating and dying. The fact that this is played very real, and does go on, is, I imagine, something that hasn't sat well with them (the BBFC rarely allow these gagging scenes in R18 films
(hardcore porn)). That being said, I'll be surprised if they were phased by the necrophilia / rigor mortis sex moments, as they can come off as laughable (as does the death via penis to eye socket), even in the context they're in, and movies like
Donkey Punch , seem to have faired off fine, so I doubt they were a problem.
While all the above scenes are shocking and uncomfortable to watch, this film IS very good. And I think that will be it's downfall, you won't forget it, and that scares censors. It doesn't look like some snuff film from
Tijuanna. It looks glossy, Hollywood, the cinematography is excellent, the acting top notch (especially as it's subtitled), it looks like a well made, well polished mainstream film. Maybe that's the problem. It's just too damn good.
For the uninitiated, FrightFest has over the past decade become the home of UK film premieres in the horror and fantasy genres. It's a forum that combines scholarly appreciation of legendary Italian director Dario Argento with a close working
relationship with filmmakers such as Neil Marshall ( Centurion ) and Christopher Smith ( Black Death ), while giving horror fans ample opportunities to cheer wildy at gore effects. Film director Gregg Araki - whose new comedy Kaboom!
was withdrawn from this weekend's programme - has denied calling us FrightFest aficionados a bunch of geeks , but FrightFest is still probably the only European festival where the terms and conditions on a three-day pass include remember personal hygiene
A Serbian Film is a 2010 Serbia adult horror by Srdjan Spasojevic. The BBFC made 49 cuts totalling 3:48s for the 2010 DVD/Blu-ray release.
In light of A Serbian Film being pulled from the Film4 FrightFest lineup at the last minute after the BBFC demanded nearly four minutes of cuts, UK distributor Revolver has released a brief statement:
A spokesperson for Revolver, the UK distributor of the film said: In light of the BBFC's recent requested 49 cuts totalling approximately 3 mins 48 secs for the DVD / Blu-ray release of A Serbian Film , we remain
committed to releasing the closest possible version of the film to the director's original cut.
The company recognises that the film is an uncompromising, artistic and political statement from a unique filmmaking vision and remains fully supportive to the director. Revolver believes this is a film that deserves to be
seen by both a theatrical and home entertainment UK audience.
A Serbian Film is a 2010 Serbia adult horror by Srdjan Spasojevic. See
The BBFC made 49 cuts totalling 3:48s for the 2010 DVD/Blu-ray release.
The BBFC commented:
The BBFC has also required cuts to the DVD submission of A Serbian Film for an ‘18’ rating. This Serbian language film with subtitles is about a former Serbian porn
star, who is lured out of early retirement by an offer of money to participate in an ‘artistic’ porn film for the ‘foreign market’. When he is forced to participate in abusive activities he tries to pull out but is drugged and is forced to
continue with the filming.
The filmmakers have stated that A Serbian Film is intended as an allegory about Serbia itself. The Board recognises that the images are intended to shock, but the
sexual and sexualised violence goes beyond what is acceptable under current BBFC Guidelines at ‘18’. The Board has therefore required 49 individual cuts to the work amounting to approximately three minutes 48 seconds. These include cuts to
the juxtaposition of images of children with sexual and sexually violent material. Although the Board does not regard these images as likely to contravene the Protection of Children Act 1978, the Guidelines state that intervention is most
likely with, amongst other things, ‘ portrayals of children in a sexualised or abusive context’.
David Cooke, Director of the BBFC said:
It is the Board’s policy that at the adult category the Guideline concerns will not normally override the principle that adults should be free to choose their own entertainment... However ..there are cases where
the Board will intervene, even at ‘18’, where material or treatment appears to the BBFC to pose a credible potential harm risk to individuals or, through their behaviour, to society, and in particular where portrayals of sexual or sexualised
violence might eroticise or endorse sexual assault or where children are portrayed in a sexualised context.
The cuts to A Serbian Film do not detract from the message of the film but remove the most problematic images of sexual and sexualised violence. The section in the Board’s Guidelines
which lists the possible grounds for compulsory cuts also includes material which portrays children in a sexualised or abusive context. Whilst the Board understands that these images are intended to make a political point, that does not
remove the genuine harm risks to which they give rise.
Controversial horror movie A Serbian Film will not be screened at this year's Film4 FrightFest event.
FrightFest co-director Alan Jones said in a statement that the horror event organisers pulled the movie because they did not wish to show a version that had been heavily censored by 49 individual cuts.
Film4 FrightFest has decided not to show A Serbian Film in a heavily cut version because, as a festival with a global integrity, we think a film of this nature should be shown in its entirety as per the director's intention, Jones
Several film festivals across the world have already done so. Unlike the I Spit on Your Grave remake, where we are showing the BBFC certified print, as requested by Westminster Council, the issues and time-line complexities surrounding
A Serbian Film make it impossible for us to screen it
A Serbian Film is the second withdrawal from FrightFest following Gregg Araki's decision not to screen his apocalyptic teen horror Kaboom .
I Spit on Your Grave is a 2010 US revenge film by Steven R Monroe. See
The BBFC made 17 cuts totalling 43s for:
UK 2010 cinema release.
The BBFC explained their cuts:
Company was required to make a total of seventeen cuts during three separate scenes of sexual violence in order to remove potentially harmful material (in this case, shots of nudity that tend to eroticise sexual violence
and shots of humiliation that tend to endorse sexual violence by encouraging viewer complicity in sexual humiliation and rape).
The BBFC added:
I SPIT ON YOUR GRAVE is a US remake of the 1978 film of the same name. It tells the story of a young woman, Jennifer Hills, who rents a secluded cabin in order to work on her novel. She is terrorised, assaulted and brutally
gang raped by a group of five men, including the local Sheriff. She then takes revenge on each of her attackers. The film was classified 18 for very strong terrorisation, sexual violence and bloody violence.
Before awarding an 18 classification to I SPIT ON YOUR GRAVE, the BBFC required seventeen individual cuts to its scenes of sexual violence in order to remove elements that tend to eroticise sexual assault (for
example, through the use of nudity), as well as other elements that tend to endorse sexual assault (for example, by encouraging viewer complicity by the use of camcorder footage, filmed by the rapists, during the various scenes of sexual
assault). With these cuts made, the film's scenes of very strong terrorisation and sexual violence remain potentially shocking, distressing or offensive to some adult viewers, but are also likely to be found repugnant and to be aversive. They are
not credibly likely to encourage imitation. There are three scenes in which Jennifer is terrorised, humiliated and sexually assaulted by the men. She is verbally and physically abused, being forced to drink alcohol, dance in her underwear and
behave like an animal. She is also beaten and pushed around by the men. Jennifer is then raped by each of the men in turn, although only two rapes are shown onscreen. In the cut version, the rape scenes feature only incidental nudity and are
played largely off facial reactions. Although the scenes of assault are protracted, the most likely response to the cut version of the scenes is revulsion and disgust rather than excitement or arousal.
The cut version of I Spit on your Grave will now be shown at Frightfest in central London as required by the local authority.
A new video game that lets players opt to fight alongside Taliban soldiers against the US in Afghanistan has provoked outrage in Australia and abroad.
Medal of Honor , which is due to launch in October, is a multiplayer game based on an elite group of US soldiers sent to apply their unique skill sets to a new enemy in the most unforgiving and hostile battlefield conditions of present
day Afghanistan .
But the new title from Electronic Arts has incensed the military community for using an ongoing conflict as a source of entertainment, and allowing gamers to pick which side they want to fight with.
Neil James, executive director of the Australian Defence Association, said: We think it's in very bad taste . . . Australia is at war - not just the defence force - and every citizen has an obligation to not only support the Defence Force but
to be sensitive particularly to bereaved families. It's unfortunate that people think they can make money by belittling the sacrifice of others. It's also morally dangerous because it is desensitising people to the moral and strategic issues
underlying the war.
Families of US Troops serving overseas have also condemned the new game. Karen Meredith, the mother of a US soldier who died in Iraq, told Fox News: Right now we are going into a really, really bad time in Afghanistan ... this game is going to
be released in October so families who are burying their children are going to be seeing this.
The UK defence secretary, Liam Fox, has urged shops to ban a computer game where players can act as the Taliban and kill British troops.
Fox said he was disgusted that Medal of Honour allowed people to recreate attacks on Nato forces.
An updated version of the popular game, due to be released in October, is based on the struggle between allied special forces and the Taliban – with players able to choose which side they represent.
A clip on YouTube shows a Taliban soldier fighting in southern Helmand province, where UK forces are based.
Gamers are apparently instructed to stop the coalition at all costs , and receive points for every allied soldier they kill.
It's shocking that someone would think it acceptable to recreate the acts of the Taliban, said Fox: At the hands of the Taliban, children have lost fathers and wives have lost husbands. I am disgusted and angry. It's hard to believe any
citizen of our country would wish to buy such a thoroughly un-British game. I would urge retailers to show their support for our armed forces and ban this tasteless product.
A spokeswoman for the game's developer, Electronic Arts, told the Sunday Times: The format of the new Medal of Honour game merely reflects the fact that every conflict has two sides.
We give gamers the opportunity to play both sides. Most of us have been doing this since we were seven: someone plays the cop, someone must be robber.
In Medal of Honour multiplayer, someone's got to be the Taliban.
The BBFC has said it is satisfied with Medal of Honor 's 18 rating, ruling out a ban as called for by UK defence secretary Liam Fox.
Sue Clark, head of communications for the BBFC said Medal of Honor is at the lower end of the 18-and-over classification, implying the adult content in the game is not extreme, with the PEGI online classification system covering the
multiplayer activity. She added that if Medal of Honor had included British soldiers, it would not have been exceptional. The game does not involve British troops, Clark said, but there are games both in modern and historical settings
which do involve British troops.
In a statement responding to Fox's criticism, EA pointed out that the original Sunday Times story in which the comments originated contained significant inaccuracies, including the involvement of British forces. Medal of Honor does not allow
players to kill British soldiers. British troops do not feature in the game, EA said. The EA spokesperson said that although Medal of Honor will let players take on the roles of both US forces and the Taliban in multiplayer mode, multiplayer
combat often involves players fighting on either side of a conflict. Many popular video games allow players to assume the identity of enemies including Nazis and terrorists.
Offsite: Liam Fox's call for ban on Medal Of Honor is both ill-judged and un-British
The Telegraph hasn't yet received a preview copy of Medal of Honor and as far as I am aware Fox hasn't seen the game either. In a statement released in the wake of Fox's comments, EA pointed to factual inaccuracies in the Sunday Times article
over the involvement of British troops. Medal of Honor does not allow players to kill British soldiers, said an EA spokesman. British troops do not feature in the game.
Fox has since defended his position; according to the BBC, he said the fact that players can assume the role of Taliban soldiers in the multiplayer mode is the main issue. But this sort of thing isn't unheard of in FPS multiplayers. If Medal Of
Honor is unfit for public consumption on these grounds, then what are we to make of last year's Modern Warfare 2 where the multiplayer mode cast players as South American terrorists and militia members from the army of Ira… sorry, from an
un-named Middle Eastern nation. Why has nearly every WWII game with a multiplayer, in which one side of players are Nazi soldiers, been allowed to pass classification from the BBFC without comment? In light of some of these past examples, Fox's
call for a ban looks more than a little extreme.
We at Gamers' Voice, the consumer group representing the players of video games in the UK, feel you should reconsider your statement calling for the banning of the upcoming Medal of Honor title, or at the very least properly research the issue
before passing judgement on it.
Firstly, Medal of Honor is only a game. The people who play it – who if retailers adhere to proper regulations and BBFC rating will only be adults – aren't going to be playing as the Taliban for any ideological reason.
The fact is in the multiplayer mode of the game, someone is going to have to play the bad guy. Children have been doing it for years with games like Cops & Robbers, and Cowboys and Indians, should these be branded disgusting too?
They said it couldn't be done. But in Liam Fox have we finally found the defence secretary to make Geoff Hoon resemble Churchill? A walking Daily Express leader column, Dr Fox appears to have surpassed even his own exacting standards of idiocy
this week, by calling for a forthcoming video game set in Afghanistan to be banned.
Though the latest Medal of Honor is essentially a first-person shooter following US troops as they seek to crush the Taliban, players can take the role of the enemy in its multiplayer mode. It's shocking that someone would think it acceptable
to recreate the acts of the Taliban, Fox fumed showily. I am disgusted and angry. It's hard to believe any citizen of our country would wish to buy such a thoroughly un-British game.
The response from the game's manufacturer is pityingly understated. Most of us have been doing this since we were seven, it runs. Someone plays the cop, someone must be the robber. In Medal of Honor multiplayer, someone must be the
It's vaguely troubling, isn't it, that the press officer for a games company has an infinitely more rational take on the Afghan war than the secretary of state for defence.
The BBFC implemented a website re-vamp on Sunday that is now live.
BBFC David Cooke said in his 2009 Annual Report
It will not only have a new look, but will be easier to navigate. It will still provide the wide range of information about the Board for both companies submitting works to the Board for classification and members of the
public looking for information about works we have classified.
And indeed the design is sleeker and the navigation is more intuitive.
There is still some work to be done on the useful films and video database though, with some advance search features missing. The data behind the scenes is very much as before and it is good to see that old links are preserved.
Lord Taylor of Warwick is the sixth parliamentarian to face charges over the expenses scandal. He is facing charges in relation to claims of £11,000.
It follows disclosures in December that he had allegedly registered a house in Oxford belonging to the partner of his stepbrother's son, without his knowledge or consent.
The peer is accused of declaring the property owned as his primary residence in order to claim second home expenses. Taylor has lived in Ealing, West London, since 1995. Peers who live outside the capital can claim £174 a night tax-free to
cover the cost of a hotel or a second home.
The 57-year-old peer resigned from the Conservative Party hours after the Crown Prosecution Service revealed that he was facing six charges of false accounting in relation to claims for overnight subsistence and car mileage between March 2006 and
October 2007. He will appear before Westminster Magistrates Court next month.
John Taylor was Vice President of the BBFC for 10 years until retiring in November 2008.
The Video Standards Council has confirmed the proposed changes to the age ratings system for games in the UK will not be applied until April 1, 2011.
Delay in PEGI rating being legally enforceable has been blamed on the Digital Economy Act, which while passed, has not been made effective as of yet.
Here's the official statement from the VSC obtained by MCV:
The BBFC have approached the UK Government expressing concern that games rated PEGI 18 will be released in the UK without BBFC certification.
The Digital Economy Act has been passed in the UK but has not yet been made effective. This means there is no change in the procedure for releasing games in the UK. If a game is rated PEGI 18 it must be submitted to the
BBFC for a legal classification. This is irrespective of whether it contains exempt content as it reflects the voluntary agreement made by the games industry to avoid confusion over 18 rated games. Games must also be submitted to the BBFC if the
contain any extraneous video which is not part of the game. This includes trailers.
The Government has said the legislative change is likely to be implemented on April 1st 2011. The VSC is involved in the discussions regarding the implementation of the new legislation and will ensure that all coders are
made aware of the changes to the procedure in good time to allow submissions to be adjusted. In the mean time please continue with your submissions in the same way that you have always done until the VCS advises differently.
It is important to stress that no games must appear for sale in UK shops with a PEGI 18 logo prior to April 1st 2011.
Enforcement of PEGI ratings was previously to be in effect by October 2010.