Film Censorship: C #1





Cadillac Named Desire 

Produced by John Janovich / 197? / USA / IMDb

Note: The 1978 date in the IMDb is obviously incorrect.


In October 1976, a 592.38-meter (53.59) 16mm 'reduced version' of CADILLAC NAMED DESIRE was banned because of 'indecency'. An unsuccessful appeal was made to the Films Board of Review in February 1977.

Garron International Pty Ltd was the applicant.





Caged Fury

Directed by Bill Milling / 1989 / USA / IMDb

Hoyts Distribution had a 94m version of CAGED FURY banned in 1990.

Home Cinema Group then picked up the rights and presented the OFLC with a 92m videotape. This was Refused Classification on April 22nd 1996. It was censored down to 80:23 and passed with an R18+ rating on March 10th 1997. The censors list the consumer advice as 'Medium Level Violence', whilst the Home Cinema Group VHS has 'Frequent Coarse Language, Sex Scenes and Medium Level Violence' on the cover.

This is not to be confused with Ciro.H.Santiago's 1983 film also called CAGED FURY, which was released on tape in Australia on the K-Tel video label.



The censored Home Cinema Group tape

Thanks to Simon for this excellent review where he documents the huge amount of footage that was removed from the Home Cinema Group tape.


This is one stupid film! However it is quite fun as it has all the usual WIP elements of shower scenes, cavity searches, and lesbian wardens. Also being an 80s film it has lots of big hair. I had no idea that the Aussie tape was cut by quite so much until I read your site. I had to see what was missing and finally tracked down an uncut US version which runs 94:50 (including the 21st Century Picture card). I didn't do a side by side comparison of the two versions, but this is a good overview of what is censored. I'm sure there may be a few more that I missed.

I'm certain that the film didn't need to be cut by quite so much. The censors would have definitely let most of this stuff through and probably only objected to a few scenes. Instead Home Cinema Group seem to have gone wild and removed every scene where a woman is even slightly hurt or even threatened. They also seem to have been very sloppy removing the footage, often taking out much more than they needed to, rather than just cutting the graphic stuff. There are no explicit sexual violence scenes, instead there are only a few attempted rapes that seem to end up with the man in pain or getting the shit kicked out of him. These descriptions may sound bad, but believe me that the film is so stupid that it is not half as graphic as it sounds.

Here is the long list of scenes that are missing footage. All time are from the uncut US version and are the approximate point of the start of the cut scene.

02:00 - A prisoner (played by porn star Kascha) is trying to escape. A black guard slowly pursues her and pushes her to the ground.

03:00 - Shot of the Head Guard's face with Kascha's screams playing over the top.

09:15 - Rhonda's face is pulled towards the crotch of the driver. She grabs the cigarette lighter and burns his crotch.

18:30 - Kathie is approached whilst on the phone to her Father. She begs not to be hurt.

19:15 - Kathie is pinned down by the bikers as they prepare to rape her.

40:30 - The fat female prison wardens bend the girls over and performs cavity searches on them.

44:30 - Kathie is pushed to the floor of the Warden's office by the Head Guard.

46:30 - Kathie is put back screaming into her cell.

50:00 - Spider drags the girls away with his arms around her neck.

53:00 - Tracy struggles as Buck attempts to rape her.

56:00 - A prisoner is taken to see the Warden who is in the bath. This is followed by some girls being taken to room 101, and then another shot of the warden and the girl.

62:00 - Gloria is released from the prison by Spider.

66:00 - Warden kissing Tracey and then slapping her as she attempts to escape.

70:00 - Tracey being carried away by two guards and being put in a cell. Kathie finding the other prisoners bodies, and Spider dragging Tracy away.

74:30 - Girl being attacked just before Dirk saves her.

76:00 - Tracy crying and being threatened by Spider with a stun gun.

77:30 - Girl being attacked in cell by guard.

80:30 - Warden telling guards to kill all the prisoners. Guards begin shooting girls in their cells.

82:45 - More of the girls shooting the girls.

83:00 - Dirk beats the prison guard (played by Ron Jeremy) to death. Missing is him getting his arm broken, his head smashed into the cell door, and finally Dirk stamping on his head.

84:45 - More of the guards shooting the girls.

90:00 - A whole scene is missing where Kathie goes back into the prison to find Rhonda. Spider is still alive. He pulls the object from his eye as the threatens Kathie. Rhonda eventually stabs him in the stomach with a pole. The scene ends with Tracy being taken away in an ambulance screaming.


Simon lists a running time of 94:50 NTSC for the uncut version. Presuming the Home Cinema Group VHS was an NTSC dub, then that is over fourteen minutes of missing footage. More likely is was PAL, which would equal over ten minutes of missing footage. Either way, it was a very censored tape.


Caged Fury - Home Cinema Group [au] VHS





Caged Women

aka Barbed Wire Dolls

Directed by Jess Franco / 1975 / Switzerland / IMDb

In September 1976, a 2249.26-meter (81:59)) print of CAGED WOMEN was banned for reasons of 'indecency and excessive violence'. An appeal to the Review Board failed in October 1976 when they confirmed the ban.

In November 1977, Blake Films were awarded an R-rating after censoring CAGED WOMEN down to 2022.30-meters (73:43). This print, missing over eight minutes, was released theatrically.

Even the daybill poster that Blake Films used was censored. A topless Lina Romay and her co-star had white bras painted on to conceal their breasts.

In April 1974, the Chief Censor, Richard Prowse, discussed in an interview how the Board dealt with advertising material such as the CAGED WOMEN poster.

An Interview with the Chief Censor, Mr Prowse: The Censor Speaks
Cinema Papers issue 2, April 1974

CP: How do you see the direction of Australian censorship?

PROWSE: Well of course this will depend a lot on Government policies, both Australian and State. As I understand it the general policy is that adult people should be free to read, see and hear whatever they wish. The second point being of course that people who don’t want this sort of material should not be subjected to it.

CP: Is this where the censorship of advertising material comes in to it?

PROWSE: Yes, because we are much tougher on advertising material than we are on the film itself, the reason being that by its very nature advertising material is freely available to everybody, even the youngest children and it is displayed in places where it is readily available to people who don’t want to see it.



CAGED WOMEN: The indecency and excessive violence

Thanks to Matt for this review.

I will try to identify the scenes where I believe the eight minutes of ‘indecency and excessive violence’ were removed from. The print I viewed ran 80:58 (NTSC) and was reportedly uncut.

2m to 4m: Nestor has a girl chained by the neck begging for food. She is shown naked on all fours as he taunts her with his riding crop.

9m to 10m: Maria is tied face down and naked on a bed with no mattress. Electric shocks are applied as she screams. I believe this would have been censored.

13m to 13:40m: Nestor rubs a girl’s vagina. This is quite an explicit scene. It was most likely from here that the British Censor removed 41s, of ‘explicit sight of sexual activity (digital penetration)' from the 2004 Anchor Bay DVD. This would have definitely been removed by our censor back in 1977.

29:30 m to 35m: The Wardress makes Bertha bend over. She puts her hand between her legs and checks if she is a virgin. The scene continues until the Wardress makes Bertha beat her. This is a long scene, but if it was censored it would only have been minor.

36m to 37:30m: Bertha is tied naked by the neck like a dog. She begs to sleep, but Nestor stops her.

44m to 45m: Bertha masturbates in front of his Excellency.

47m to 49m: Maria’s father (Jess Franco) approaches her as she sleeps naked. He tries to force himself on her. There is nothing particularly explicit here, though the whole incest theme may have caused problems. BARBED WIRE DOLLS is a film worth watching if only for the hilarious mock slow motion fight between Maria and her father. Instead of filming it in actual slow motion, Franco simulates the whole thing!

52:45m to 54m: Maria is again shown tied face down and naked on a bed with no mattress. Electric shocks are applied as she screams. Nestor puts his riding crop between he legs. I believe this would have been censored.

75:30m to 77:30m: Another girl is shown naked and face down on the bed. Nestor threatens her with the riding crop unless she talks. The girl’s vagina is clearly shown in this scene, which would have made it a prime target for the censor.

78:45: Brief shot of Nestor raping Bertha before he is shot.

Image courtesy of


Caged Women (1975) - Blake Films [au] Daybill





Calamity of Snakes

Directed by Chi Chang / 1982 / Hong Kong / IMDb

June 1983 saw Golden Reel Films Pty Ltd submit a 2276.69 meter (83:13) print of CALAMITY OF SNAKES to the censors. Cuts totalling 140 meters (05:06) were required due to violence, which was described as:
Frequency: Infrequent
Explicitness/Intensity: High
Purpose: Gratuitous

The censored version then received an R-rating for violence and horror, which was described as being:
Frequency: Frequent
Explicitness/Intensity: Medium
Purpose: Gratuitous
Other: Horror

This version went on to have a Chinese language theatrical release. Although not listed as such, it would be fair to guess that most of these cuts were made to remove footage of animal cruelty. The uncut film contains numerous scenes of real snakes being killed.




In 1985, footage from CALAMITY OF SNAKES was taken and edited into a bizarre U.S. film called THE SERPENT WARRIORS. This was picked-up for distribution in Australia by the Taft Hardie Group who submitted it to the censors in August 1987. The 89m videotape was rated M for violence which was described as:
Frequency: Frequent
Explicitness/Intensity: Medium
Purpose: Gratuitous

The CIC-TAFT Video/THG Video that followed actually ran 84:23. Approximately the first 20m and the final 30m are made up of footage from CALAMITY OF SNAKES. The middle portion consists of newly shot US footage. As you can expect, the two films do not mix at all, and the final movie is a mess.

The car reversing over real snakes was the only scene of animal cruelty from CALAMITY OF SNAKES that made it into THE SERPENT WARRIORS (1985).




Thanks to Matt for this information.

CALAMITY OF SNAKES is a highly entertaining slice of Hong Kong trash. I viewed the Ocean Shores laser disc, which ran 82:44. The disc lacks English subtitles, but you do not really need them once the action begins.

I would agree that the Film Censorship Board would have cut the film for animal cruelty. Numerous real snakes are smashed, sliced, run over, torn to pieces, and burnt. The snakes are definitely real, and there is no doubt that they died just for the film.

These are the points where the footage appears.

05:30 to 07:00 – The workers on a construction site discover a mass of snakes in a pit. The Boss begins to kill them with by continually dropping the bucket of an excavator on top of them. The workers join in and begin to cut and smash the live snakes with axes and picks.

10:00 to 11:30 – A market a stall owner is shown slicing and skinning a live snake, draining its blood, and removing the still beating heart.

27:00 to 31:00 – Several mongooses are sent into battle. This scene goes on forever, and shows them attacking and killing the snakes.

36:00 – The priest stamps on and kills a real snake.

58:00 – The car reverses over real snakes.

71:00 to 72:00 – The Boss slices up snakes with a sword.

74:00 to end – The final scene has the fire department arriving at the apartment building. There are a few scenes where they kill the snakes with flamethrowers.


Calamity of Snakes (1982) The Serpent Warriors (1985) - CIC TAFT THG Video [au] VHS





Caligula: The Untold Story

Directed by Joe D'Amato / 1981 / Italy / IMDb

This film has never had problems with the Australian censors. It is included because the distributor released a censored print.


Video Classics had a 2605 meter (95:13) print of CALIGULA: THE UNTOLD STORY passed with an R-rating in February 1984. The same rating was awarded again for a 95m videotape in May 1984. The Video Classics tape that followed was the soft-version of the film and actually ran 90:49.

There is no way that the uncut version could have been released in Australia as it contains hardcore sex, and bestiality footage involving a horse.


Caligula: The Untold Story (1981) - Video Classics [au] VHS






aka Vanilla Series: Campus

Produced by Shiyuuta Biwajima - Chikara Niki - Digital Works / 2002 / Japan / IMDb

This film has never had problems with the Australian censors. It is included because we suspect the distributor censored it prior to submission to the Classification Board.


Siren Visual Entertainment had a DVD of CAMPUS rated R18+ (High Level Sex Scenes) in December 2003.

Despite being listed as the ORIGINAL version, the DVD had actually been pre-cut prior to submission. According to Siren:

"...minor cuts were made, but only in relation to any sexual violence connotations, which would not pass under any circumstances"

This was eventually released on DVD in 2004 on a double-bill with GIRL NEXT DOOR.

Siren re-released CAMPUS as a single feature in May 2007 as part of their Hentai Collection.

We give full marks to Siren for admitting the cuts. Unfortunately, the Classification Board's statistics now record these as never having had censorship problems. This situation is widespread in the X18+ category.


Campus (2002) - Siren Visual Entertainment [au] DVD 2Campus (2002) - Siren Visual Entertainment [au] DVD 3





Candy Goes to Hollywood

Directed by Gail Palmer / 1979 / USA / IMDb

In July 1981, a 2299.90-meter (83:50) 'pre-censor cut version' of CANDY GOES TO HOLLYWOOD was banned due to sex. It was said to be:
Frequency: Frequent
Explicitness/Intensity: High
Purpose: Gratuitous

A 1952.16-meter (71:09) 'reconstructed pre-censor cut version' was passed with an R-rating in October 1981. The sex was now described as:
Frequency: Frequent
Explicitness/Intensity: Medium
Purpose: Gratuitous

In both cases, Cinerama Films was the applicant.


In April 1983, an 83-minute tape of CANDY GOES TO HOLLYWOOD was banned for the same reason as the July 1981 submission.

PBL Video was the applicant.


The X-rating was introduced in February 1984, which allowed hardcore films to be classified in Australia. In July of that year, an 85-minute tape of CANDY GOES TO HOLLYWOOD was passed this new rating. The sex was said to be:
Frequency: Frequent
Explicitness/Intensity: High
Purpose: Gratuitous

In April 1985, a 69-minuute pre-censored version was passed with an R-rating. The sex was:
Frequency: Frequent
Explicitness/Intensity: Medium
Purpose: Gratuitous

In both cases, the applicant was 14th Mandolin. They released it on their Pink Video label.


It was also passed for a second time with an X-rating. The October 1984 submission was in the form of an 89-minute tape. The level of sex was the same as the July 1984 classification.

W.B. and J.E. Wathen were the applicants.


Candy Goes to Hollywood (1979) - Pink Video [au] VHS





Cannibal Apocalypse

Directed by Antonio Margheriti / 1980 / Italy / IMDb

For reasons of violence, Roadshow had to remove 58s of footage from CANNIBAL APOCALYPSE before a 97m 35mm print was rated R in November 1981. This censored version went on to have a theatrical release.

Palace Explosive released this print on video in the early 80s. It was reviewed in 1984, and confirmed with an R-rating running 91:11. The censorship takes place around the 62m mark. Charlie is shown picking up a power saw, but the subsequent cutting of the victims leg is missing.

In the early 90s, a modified version of CANNIBAL APOCALYPSE played several times on Sydney's Channel Seven.

Daybill image courtesy of


Cannibal Apocalypse (1980) - Roadshow Distributors [au] Daybill     Cannibal Apocalypse (1980) - Palace Explosive Video [au] CATALOGUECannibal Apocalypse (1980) - Palace Explosive Video [au] VHS





Cannibal Ferox

aka Woman from Deep River

Directed by Umberto Lenzi / 1981 / Italy / IMDb

In March 1982, Superstar International Films received an R-rating for a 2454.14 meter (89:42) 35mm print of CANNIBAL FEROX. The film was re-titled WOMAN FROM DEEP RIVER in Australia to cash in on Umberto Lenzi's MAN FROM DEEP RIVER. Although not listed as such, this print had been pre-cut prior to submission, so had no problems with the censors.

They cited violence and drugs as the reason for the R-rating, describing them as being:

Frequency: Frequent
Explicitness/Intensity: Medium
Purpose: Gratuitous


Describing the violence in this print of CANNIBAL FEROX as being medium in explicitness and intensity is a big giveaway that it was censored.

It was released theatrically by Associated Film Distributors.


Censored video releases

Video Classics released WOMAN FROM DEEP RIVER on video tape. A 90m version was reviewed by the censors in 1984, when they confirmed it with an R-rating. The actual runtime is 85:59, around three minutes shorter than the uncut film. Scenes missing from the Video Classics tape are as follows.

43:04- Close up of a native's eye being cut out by Mike.

51:46- Natives opening up Joe's stomach, eating his intestines, then turning and walking away.

54:35- Shot of Mike's penis being cut off.

54:56- Shot of Salvation Army Band playing in New York. Shot of car pulling up next to Mike's girlfriend, and two men getting out.
MG "Why do you want to meet out here?" "Did Mike send you?"
"Where is Mike?"
M1 "Don't worry Honey, you know very well where that son of a bitch is, and you're going to tell us"
M2 "Come on bitch, where's your stud?" He then hits her face twice.
MG "I don't know where Mike is"
M2 "Wrong answer" He then kicks her in the face.
MG "Lay off me you bastards"

75:04- Close up shot of the hook entering Pat's breast, and a shot of her face screaming.

77:57- Slow zoom into a shot of Pat hanging with the hooks through her breasts.

78:51- Shot of Mike under the table with the top of his head missing. Two cannibals then take pieces of his brain.


A second Australian VHS of WOMAN FROM DEEP RIVER was released in 1995 on a 'No Name Label'. Thanks to Ben for pointing out that it was censored, and ran 88m and not the 95m as listed on the box. However, it was not a direct copy of the Video Classics tape as it contains the missing scene described above at the 54:56 mark.



2005 customs confiscation

There is one report from 2005 of customs confiscating the Austrian Sazuma Productions Ultrabit Edition DVD. The reason given was:

"under subsection 203B(2) being goods suspected on reasonable grounds to be special fortified goods."

"[a]n authorised person believes person believes on reasonable grounds that the said goods are forfeited to the Crown pursuant to Section 229 of the Customs Act 1901. The above DVD is deemed to breach Regulation 4A(1A)(a) of the customs (Prohibited Imports) Regulations.



2005 uncut DVD release

Siren Visual Entertainment gave CANNIBAL FEROX an uncensored DVD release in February 2005. This version was uncut at 88:57, and contained all of the above-mentioned scenes.

Daybill image courtesy of


Cannibal Ferox (1981) - Associated Film Distributors [au] Daybill      Cannibal Ferox (1981) - Video Classics [au] VHSCannibal Ferox (1981) - No Name Label [au] VHSCannibal Ferox (1981) - Siren Visual Entertainment [au] DVD





Cannibal Holocaust

Directed by Ruggero Deodato / 1980 / Italy / IMDb

In 1983, Fox-Columbia Film Distribution had a 96m 35mm print of CANNIBAL HOLOCAUST Refused Registration. A few months later another print, now censored down to 89m was also refused.



Programmed at the 2001 MUFF

In 2001, the Melbourne Underground Film Festival planned to show CANNIBAL HOLOCAUST at RMIT following a debate about censorship. It is unclear if it was screened.

Banned films to screen at festival, June 27, 2001

Eliza Anderson, of RMIT University Corporate Affairs, said the Melbourne Underground Film Festival had been asked to give assurances it would not show banned films Salo and Cannibal Holocaust.

However, late yesterday festival organisers and RMIT appeared to be locked in a stalemate over the issue.

In a statement voicing disapproval about screening the banned films, Anderson said yesterday: "All individuals and organisations that hire RMIT University venues are required to use them in line with all relevant laws and regulations."

Later Mr Wolstencroft said: "We knew we were probably going to run into trouble, but we are going to do our best to fight this, and bring public attention to censorship issues."

"It's a David and Goliath situation," Mr Wolstencroft said yesterday. "And the truth is Goliath always squashes David -- and we are David."



Customs Confiscations

Until it was passed uncut in 2005, CANNIBAL HOLOCAUST was constantly targeted by the Australian Customs Service.

October 1991: Was part of a package of fifteen tapes that were seized by the Australian Customs Service. They were forwarded to the Office of Film and literature Classification (OFLC) who found them to be:

"…prohibited pursuant to Regulation 4A(1A)(a)(iii) of the Customs (Prohibited Imports) Regulations"

1998: A copy of the Dutch Cult Epics Laserdisc was confiscated.

2002: The Dutch EC Entertainment DVD was taken, the reason given was:
The above items are prohibited and subject to regulation 4A(1A)(A) of the customs (Prohibited Imports) regulations 1956

2002: In November, the OFLC banned the debut DVD release of U.S. Death Metal band Necrophagia. Titled NECROPHAGIA: THROUGH THE EYES OF THE DEAD, it contains their tribute to CANNIBAL HOLOCAUST. This Jim Van Bebber directed clip contains actual footage from the movie. This could possibly be one of the reasons for the disc being Refused Classification.

2002: DVD confiscated coming from Shocking Images mail-order in the U.S. The reason given was:
One DVD titled CANNIBAL HOLOCAUST depicting sexual violence.

2004: Another copy of the Dutch EC Entertainment DVD, the reason given was:
An authorised person believes on reasonable grounds that the said goods are forfeited to the crown pursuant to sub-section 229(1)(b) of the Customs Act 1901 as a prohibited import.
Regulation 4A of the Customs (prohibited imports) Regulations provides that the importation of goods specified in Regulation 4A is prohibited unless the permission in writing of the minister or an authorised person to import the goods has been granted.

2005: Another copy of the Dutch EC Entertainment DVD was taken, the reason given was:
1 x DVD Titled 'CANNIBAL HOLOCAUST' were seized under the following provisions of the Customs Act 1901 on the following ground:  Under Subsection 203B (2), Being goods suspected on reasonable grounds to be special forfeited goods.
The above DVD is deemed to breach regulation 4A (1A) (A) of the Customs (Prohibited Imports) regulations.



2005: Uncut at last

In October 2005, twenty-three years after the first submission, CANNIBAL HOLOCAUST was finally passed for public exhibition in Australia. Siren Visual Entertainment were awarded an R18+ (High Level Sexual Violence, High Level Violence, Animal Cruelty) rating. The Australian Premiere took place in April 2006 when the uncut DVD was finally released.

Siren Newsletter April 2006
Cannibal Holocaust
Collectors edition: 2 Disc set featuring LOADS of special features, presented in a deluxe digipack & slipcase

Banned in Australia since the early 80's, for years reviled as one of the most repugnant and morally questionable films ever made, and possibly the most horrifying ever. A very original piece, later to be stolen by the writers of The Blair Witch Project, CANNIBAL HOLOCAUST stands the test of time as the most brutal film ever made.


The two-disc Siren DVD was banned by the New Zealand OFLC in July 2006. It was deemed to be 'Objectionable'.



2013: Australian TV premiere

In August 2013, the uncut version of CANNIBAL HOLOCAUST premiered on the World Movies channel as part of their FILMS THAT SHOCKED THE WORLD series.

Films That Shocked The World
July 27, 2013

They’re the movies that changed the face of cinema. They’ve been banned around the world and have been the cause of arrests, court cases and protests. They’ve caused moral outrage and countless newspaper headlines. Now, over one controversial week, World Movies brings you the Films That Shocked The World – all for the first time on Australian television.

We’re presenting the movies that others have told you that you can’t or shouldn’t see. From the film that invented modern-day pornography, to the movie that the Australian Classification Board banned for being too "graphic" in 2004, this is the essential collection of controversial cinema.

The week begins with the horror film that sparked outrage in 2009, The Human Centipede, followed by Larry Clark’s shocking tale of youth without hope – Kids. Don’t miss the 1980 horror film Cannibal Holocaust, the infamous Deep Throat and finally the international scandal of Baise-Moi.

Wednesday 21 August 9.30pm
Cannibal Holocaust (Italy, 1980) - Australian Television Premiere A group of four documentary filmmakers experience a bloody attack at the hands of a tribe of flesh-eating cannibals. This film was so graphic that the director and producer were arrested when it was released.



2014: Blu-Ray release

On July 9th, Siren Visual will be releasing CANNIBAL HOLOCAUST on Blu-Ray.

19 May 2014

Following on from our kawaii announcement last month, here's something relentlessly punishing from the ruthless Italian master, Ruggero Deodato...

Cannibal Holocaust...

In conjunction with Grindhouse Releasing in the US, Siren Visual presents the nasty horror classic on Blu-ray, newly remastered with tons of new bonus material which you will only find on this double Blu-ray disc edition.

On top of the disc features, there will also be a 24 page booklet featuring international theatrical poster art and liner notes by Eli Roth, Chas Balun, Gergely Hubai and Martin Beine. New cover art by Rick Melton will be obscured by a slipcase, protecting unwitting eyes. A full rundown of disc content can be found here. Pre-orders are open and stores will have copies July 9. This is the definitive edition of Cannibal Holocaust and an essential addition to your collection.



Cannibal Holocaust (1980) - Siren Visual Entertainment [au] DVDCannibal Holocaust (1980) - Siren Visual Entertainment [au] Blu-Ray



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