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2021: Oct-Dec

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Offsite Article: This holiday season, spare a thought for the BBFC...

Link Here28th December 2021
The Guardian highlights silliness at the BBFC and its bouncy children's ratings

See article from



Offsite Article: Snail Mail...

Link Here21st December 2021
The Daily Mail catches up with the idea that the BBFC 12 rating has become the new baseline 'parental guidance' rating

See article from



Offsite Article: BBFC Podcast 109...

Link Here21st December 2021
The BBFC explains new rules requiring higher ratings for films using selected pejorative terms

See article from



More trigger warnings...

The BBFC respond to a public opinion survey by promising more carefully manufactured PC wording in its ratings info

Link Here3rd December 2021

The British Board of Film Classification (BBFC) has commissioned new research into racism and discrimination in films and TV shows, asking people, including those who have been directly affected, their views into the classification of such scenes, in both modern and older content.

Findings showed that people don't think that older films and TV shows necessarily need higher age ratings if they contain outdated behaviour or language, but they want to be warned about potentially offensive words or portrayals.

People understand that some older films and TV shows are a 'product of their time', but it's clear that attitudes have shifted over the years.

When it comes to a more current setting, the findings showed the 'n word' should not be classified lower than 12A/12 - unless there is very clear and strong educational value, for example, in a documentary with strong appeal or value to younger audiences.

David Austin, Chief Executive of the BBFC, said:

"We must always assess the context in which content appears, especially with regards to the factors that may support a higher classification or help defend a lower one. Violent and threatening behaviour, or use of particularly offensive language, will always aggravate an instance of discriminatory or racist behaviour. However, clear condemnation, sympathy with the victims, or a documentary or historical setting can all work to help frame the sequence and potentially give the content educational value for younger viewers."

The research found that some people, particularly parents, believe there is value in showing children examples of racism and discrimination to 'prepare' them for the behaviour and attitudes they may experience or witness in real life. But others want to shield children from racism and discrimination for as long as possible. People, especially parents, therefore want content warnings so they can make informed decisions.

People are empathetic towards others, recognising that even if they are not personally offended by a certain term or behaviour, they acknowledge others may be - again highlighting the need for content warnings on films and TV shows.

Lord Kamlesh Patel, Vice President of the BBFC, said:

"Movements dedicated to raising awareness and combatting discrimination and racism have gained important traction in the last two years. In response, we wanted to see how this has impacted the views of people in the UK, and particularly to hear from and listen to those who have been directly impacted by discrimination and racism as their voices are important. We recognise that our role isn't just about protecting children from harmful content, it's about helping parents who might want to use depictions of discrimination and racism as a potential teaching moment."

Changes the BBFC are making off the back of this research:

  • adopting an even stricter position on the classification of the 'n-word' at the junior categories

  • placing significant emphasis on the educational value of documentary contexts, which might result in a documentary getting a lower age rating

  • being particularly mindful of the intent within the scene when classifying older films and TV shows

  • continuing to consider directed, aggressive or violent depictions of discrimination, or the likelihood of children copying any form of racism, including racist language, as key factors which might raise an age rating

  • continuing to use ratings info to signal when discriminatory language or behaviour is contained in a film or TV show

  • Using the phrase 'an actor in make-up portraying a different ethnicity' when describing assumed racial identities

About the research:

  • 70 participants took part in online research sessions, and were asked to watch clips and answer questions about them.

  • 20 respondents were asked to participate in interviews to dig deeper into specific issues.

  • When defining the sample we intentionally over-represented a number of minority groups (e.g. Black) in order to understand the perception/impact of discriminatory content on those most directly affected by it.

  • Over 70% of the final sample identify as among protected characteristic groups, with some participants being part of more than one group

  • We Are Family also recruited a nationally representative group; but the overall sample does not reflect the demographic make-up of the UK population overall. During analysis this has been taken into account, and we have tried to identify and pull out insight that best reflects the attitudes of the majority, and as such is reflective of the BBFC's commitment to represent and reflect the UK population.

Offsite Comment: smacks of paternalism

3rd December 2021. See article from by Simran Hans

It is troubling that the British Board of Film Classification believes its role includes judging art on the lessons it imparts



Endangering adults...

The Sunday Times reports that the Government is preparing to require ID verification for all internet porn

Link Here26th November 2021
Full story: Online Safety Bill Draft...UK Government legislates to censor social media
The Sunday Times is reporting that UK government inisters are preparing to introduce mandatory ID verification for adults to be able to access internet porn.

Plans to bring in ID verification for adult sites, which were shelved in 2019 over their failure to include data protection for porn users, are now being looked on with approval by Nadine Dorries, the culture secretary, and Nadhim Zahawi, the education secretary.

Their support follows an intervention by Dame Rachel de Souza, the children's commissioner, who has sent a report to ministers recommending that age verification becomes compulsory on all porn sites, not just those with user uploaded content as proposed under the draft Online 'Safety' Bill.



The Phantom Of The Open...

UK comedy drama cut for a 12A rated cinema release

Link Here26th October 2021
The Phantom Of The Open is a 2021 UK comedy drama by Craig Roberts
Starring Rhys Ifans, Sally Hawkins and Mark Rylance BBFC link 2020 IMDb

The story of golfer Maurice Flitcroft whose performance at the 1976 British Open Golf Championship made him a legend.

Exists in 2 versions. The Phantom Of The Open was cut for BBFC 12A rated cinema release in 2021.  The Fantastic Flitcrofts is uncut and BBFC 15 rated for cinema release in 2021.



run: 103m
pal: 99m
12AUK: Passed 12A for infrequent strong language:
  • 2021 cinema release titled The Phantom Of The Open

Cut to reduce strong language.

BBFC uncut
run: 103m
pal: 99m
15UK: Passed 15 uncut for strong language:
  • 2021 cinema release titled The Fantastic Flitcrofts



Extract: Scissors at dawn...

Daily Telegraph film critic asks if the BBFC is being too strict over 18 ratings for The Last Duel and Last Night in Soho

Link Here18th October 2021
The Last Duel is a 2021 USA drama by Ridley Scott
Starring Matt Damon, Adam Driver and Jodie Comer BBFC link 2020 IMDb

King Charles VI declares that Knight Jean de Carrouges settle his dispute with his squire by challenging him to a duel.

Passed BBFC 18 uncut for sexual violence, strong bloody violence

Last Night in Soho is a 2021 UK horror mystery thriller by Edgar Wright
Starring Anya Taylor-Joy, Thomasin McKenzie and Diana Rigg BBFC link 2020 IMDb

In acclaimed director Edgar Wright's psychological thriller, Eloise, an aspiring fashion designer, is mysteriously able to enter the 1960s where she encounters a dazzling wannabe singer, Sandie. But the glamour is not all it appears to be and the dreams of the past start to crack and splinter into something far darker.

Passed BBFC 18 uncut for strong bloody violence

The Telegraph film critic Robbie Collin has written questioning whether the BBFC are being too strict in the 18 rating for the Last Due and Last Night in Soho:

Borrowing from Kurosawa's Rashomon, Scott depicts the events leading to the duel from his three protagonists' very different perspectives, a narrative device that comes into its own in the depiction of the rape itself. For Driver, the attack is a transaction: he sees something he wants and takes it, while assuming his victim accepts on some deep level this is just how things work. To Comer, it is unthinkably traumatising, but also chillingly banal. The fundamental horror of Driver's actions isn't couched in striking camera angles or lurid stylistic flourishes.

It's what developmental psychologists might describe as a teachable moment: the scene lays bare the mechanisms of sexual violence so frankly that you sense it could give its audience a greater understanding of the subject. But alas, one particular group that might especially benefit -- older teenage boys -- has been prevented from seeing it in the first place.

A few days later, the same classification was handed down to Edgar Wright's Last Night in Soho: another film that addresses sexual violence in ways that could be instructive -- as opposed to scarring -- for younger viewers.


But for Scott's and Wright's films to be made out of bounds to every member of a demographic for whom the issues they address might hold particular pertinence feels like the opposite of good moral sense. Understanding often follows discomfort: in fact, the discomfort is often what makes the understanding stick.



Jules And Jim...

A classic old French film is the latest film to be uprated by the BBFC

Link Here18th October 2021
  Jules And Jim is a 1962 France romance by François Truffaut
Starring Jeanne Moreau, Oskar Werner and Henri Serre BBFC link 2020 IMDb
There are no cuts issues with this release. The BBFC rating was originally 'X' in 1962, and then PG from 1991 until to 2008. BBFC have just increased the rating to 12A over new sensitivities about discrimination and sex references.

Summary Notes

In pre-WWI Paris, two friends, Jules (Austrian) and Jim (French), fall in love with the same woman, Catherine. But Catherine loves and marries Jules. When they meet again in Germany after the war, Catherine starts to love Jim - This is the story of three people in love, a love that doesn't affect their friendship, and about how their relationship evolves with the years.


BBFC uncut
run: 106m
pal: 102m
12AUK: Passed 12A uncut with a BBFC trigger warning for discrimination, moderate bad language, sex references:
  • 2021 cinema release titled Jules Et Jim

BBFC uncut
run: 105:56s
pal: 101:42s
PG 1980UK: Passed PG uncut for mild language, sex references and brief drug reference:
  • 2008 cinema release titled Jules Et Jim
  • 2006 Cinema Club video titled Jules Et Jim
UK: Passed PG uncut:
  • 2002 Tartan Video Ltd video titled Jules Et Jim
  • 1993 Artificial Eye Film Co. Ltd VHS titled Jules Et Jim
  • 1991 cinema release titled Jules Et Jim
BBFC uncut
run: 106:00s
pal: 101:46s
X pre 1970UK: Passed X (16) uncut:
  • 1962 cinema release

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