Film Censorship: Hanger (2009)


 

 

 

 

Hanger

Directed by Ryan Nicholson  / 2009 / Canada / IMDb

In August 2012, a 90m DVD of HANGER was banned because of sexual violence, high impact sexualised violence, and prolonged depictions of offensive and/or very high impact violence.

Bounty Films was the applicant.

 

Thanks to Monster Pictures for the Classification Board report.

Reason For Decision:
In making this decision, the Classification Board has applied the Classification (Publications, Films and Computer Games) Act 1995 (the Classification Act), the National Classification Code (the Code) and the Guidelines for the Classification of Films and Computer Games 2005 (the Guidelines).

In the Board’s view this film warrants an ‘RC’ classification in accordance with item 1(a) of the films table of the National Classification Code:

“1. Films that:

(a) depict, express or otherwise deal with matters of sex, drug misuse or addiction, crime, cruelty, violence or revolting or abhorrent phenomena in such a way that they offend against the standards of morality, decency and propriety generally accepted by reasonable adults to the extent that they should not be classified;” will be Refused Classification.

The Guidelines state that sexual violence may be implied if justified by context within the R18+ classification; films will therefore be refused classification if they contain explicit depictions of sexual violence. The Guidelines also state that films will be refused classification if they contain gratuitous, exploitative or offensive depictions of violence with a very high degree of impact or which are excessively frequent, prolonged or detailed.

 

The film contains depictions of explicit sexual violence and sexualised violence that are very high in impact, as well as prolonged depictions of violence which are offensive and/or have a very high degree of impact. Depictions of violence include detailed mutilation and disfigurement, viscera and shattered bone as well as blood gushes, splatter and spray. A male character is tortured with a blow torch while two others are choked to death - one with excrement and the other with a used tampon. Sexual themes underpin the depictions of violence with pornographic footage and still images featuring full frontal nudity with genital detail and explicit sexual intercourse frequently viewed in the background. Other scenes of violence are cut with depictions of sexual activity and/or sexualised nudity. The sexual content and sexualised context both serve to heighten the overall impact of the violence viewed throughout the film. This content exceeds what can be accommodated within the R18+ classification and, as such, is Refused Classification.

 

Please note that the examples described below do not represent an exhaustive list of the content that caused the film to be Refused Classification.

Examples include but are not limited to the following:

At approximately 10 minutes, a heavily pregnant prostitute, Rose, is implicitly struck across the face with the hook of a metal coat hanger. A deep, raw and bloody gash is viewed in close-up across the left side of her face. Her pimp, Leroy, forces her back on a bed, spreads her legs as he straddles her and implies that he is going to abort her foetus. When Rose pleads with him to convince him not to harm her baby, Leroy implicitly punches her with force, knocking her out. A close-up of Rose’s belly is viewed followed by an extreme close-up depicting the hook of the wire hanger being run across Rose’s genitals before Leroy explicitly inserts the hook between her labia and then implicitly through the birth canal and into her uterus – again viewed in extreme close-up. Rose screams and writhes in pain before a squelching sound effect is heard and Leroy implicitly forces the implement deeper into her womb below screen. He continues to manipulate the wire hook below screen before, in another extreme close-up, blood streams from between Rose’s labia as Leroy manipulates her belly. The camera cuts to a close-up of Rose’s face, contorted in pain, before it cuts back to another extreme close-up of blood flowing from between Rose’s labia. Leroy exclaims “Got cha!” and Rose cries out in pain before the blood-smeared head of the infant is viewed exiting the birth canal. Leroy drags the baby from Rose’s body with the umbilical cord still attached and, with wide blood stains viewed on the bed linen, tosses the infant to the floor. An extreme close-up of the blood-covered infant is viewed before the scene ends at approximately 14 minutes.

 

At approximately 31 minutes, when Russell tells a woman that she is “butt ugly” and looks pregnant, Hanger appears mesmerised by the woman’s protruding belly. He pushes the woman back on the couch saying “Give me baby”, then claws at the now screaming woman’s clothes and nuzzles at her breast while Russell, jumping up and down in excitement, looks on. At approximately 32 minutes, in an extreme close-up, Hanger lifts his head revealing a wide, open and bloody wound on the woman’s breast where he has implicitly bitten off her nipple and the surrounding flesh. Blood splatters over the screaming woman before the bitten section is dropped back onto her upper chest. The now blood-drenched woman continues to scream as Hanger savages her chest and body; gnawing and chewing on what appears to be bloodied viscera, entrails and flesh. The camera cuts to a front on close-up of the now silent woman and Hanger, both completely drenched in blood, then back to a close-up of Hanger as he continues to feed on and tear through the woman’s flesh and organs while repeating “give me baby”. The scene ends at approximately 35 minutes.

 

At approximately 63 minutes, Phil, dressed as Santa Claus, having swallowed a handful of tablets in order to achieve “the hard-on of the century” and having rendered Russell and Hanger unconscious with GBH, exposes his erect penis before, thrusting vigorously, he implicitly anally rapes Russell. The scene cuts to a close-up of a female character’s genitals as she masturbates with a small implement, then to John, tied up and having been tortured with a blow torch, now having his face forced into the genitals of a semi-naked prostitute. The camera cuts back to Phil as he crosses to Hanger, lying unconscious on the couch, his colostomy bag having been pulled from the stoma in his abdomen. In an extreme close-up, Phil explicitly inserts his penis into the stoma and thrusts repeatedly as copious amounts of thick brown fluid ooze from the hole in Hanger’s belly.

 

In the opinion of the Board, this film contains depictions of violence, sexual violence and sexualised violence that are very high in impact and exceed what can be accommodated within the R18+ classification. As such, this film is Refused Classification pursuant to item 1(a) of the films table of the Code.

Decision:

This film is Refused Classification in accordance with item 1(a) of the films table of the National Classification Code.

 

It's Only a T-Shirt designed the cover art that was intended for the Monster Pictures DVD.

 

Hanger (2009) - Monster Pictures [au] DVD

 

 

February 2013: Secrecy and the Australian Classification Board

In 2012, Brendan Molloy from the Pirate Party made a Freedom of Information request for an SQL dump of the Classification database, as well as ten Classification Board reports relating to RC content.

Freedom of Information Request Round-up: It’s mainly bad news
brendan.so
February 8, 2013

 

One of these was the report for HANGER (2009). All documents had a significant amount of information redacted.

In the case of HANGER, we already have the original report supplied to us by Monster Pictures. Using this as a template, we have reproduced the information that was removed from the FOI request.

 

File No: T12/2268
Australian Government
Classification Board

Decision Report

Classification decisions are made in accordance with the Classification (Publications, Films and Computer Games) Act 1995 (the Act), the national Classification Code and the Classification Guidelines.

Production Details:
Title:
REDACTED - Exempt under section 7 (2) and Schedule 2 Part 2 Division 1
Alternate titles:
REDACTED - Exempt under section 7 (2) and Schedule 2 Part 2 Division 1
Director/s:
REDACTED - Exempt under section 7 (2) and Schedule 2 Part 2 Division 1
Producer/s: not shown
Year of Production: 2009
Duration: 90 MINUTES
Version: ORIGINAL
Format: DVD
Country/ies of origin: CANADA
Language/s: ENGLISH
Application type: FO2
Applicant:
REDACTED - S47G (1)(a)

Dates:
Date application received by the Classification Board: 05 July 2012
Date of decision: 02 August 2012

Decision:
Classification: RC
Consumer advice:

Synopsis:

REDACTED film which tells the story of a boy who survived a forced abortion which killed his mother, and which, at the age of eighteen, seeks to have his revenge on the pimp who murdered his mother.

 

Reason For Decision:
In making this decision, the Classification Board has applied the Classification (Publications, Films and Computer Games) Act 1995 (the Classification Act), the National Classification Code (the Code) and the Guidelines for the Classification of Films and Computer Games 2005 (the Guidelines).

In the Board’s view this film warrants an ‘RC’ classification in accordance with item 1(a) of the films table of the National Classification Code:

“1. Films that:

(a) depict, express or otherwise deal with matters of sex, drug misuse or addiction, crime, cruelty, violence or revolting or abhorrent phenomena in such a way that they offend against the standards of morality, decency and propriety generally accepted by reasonable adults to the extent that they should not be classified;” will be Refused Classification.

The Guidelines state that sexual violence may be implied if justified by context within the R18+ classification; films will therefore be refused classification if they contain explicit depictions of sexual violence. The Guidelines also state that films will be refused classification if they contain gratuitous, exploitative or offensive depictions of violence with a very high degree of impact or which are excessively frequent, prolonged or detailed.

 

This entire paragraph was REDACTED.
It was found to be Exempt under section 7(2) and Schedule 2 Part 2 Division 1

The film contains depictions of explicit sexual violence and sexualised violence that are very high in impact, as well as prolonged depictions of violence which are offensive and/or have a very high degree of impact. Depictions of violence include detailed mutilation and disfigurement, viscera and shattered bone as well as blood gushes, splatter and spray. A male character is tortured with a blow torch while two others are choked to death - one with excrement and the other with a used tampon. Sexual themes underpin the depictions of violence with pornographic footage and still images featuring full frontal nudity with genital detail and explicit sexual intercourse frequently viewed in the background. Other scenes of violence are cut with depictions of sexual activity and/or sexualised nudity.

 

The sexual content and sexualised context both serve to heighten the overall impact of the violence viewed throughout the film. This content exceeds what can be accommodated within the R18+ classification and, as such, is Refused Classification.

 

Please note that the examples described below do not represent an exhaustive list of the content that caused the film to be Refused Classification.

Examples include but are not limited to the following:

This entire paragraph was REDACTED.
It was found to be Exempt under section 7(2) and Schedule 2 Part 2 Division 1
At approximately 10 minutes, a heavily pregnant prostitute, Rose, is implicitly struck across the face with the hook of a metal coat hanger. A deep, raw and bloody gash is viewed in close-up across the left side of her face. Her pimp, Leroy, forces her back on a bed, spreads her legs as he straddles her and implies that he is going to abort her foetus. When Rose pleads with him to convince him not to harm her baby, Leroy implicitly punches her with force, knocking her out. A close-up of Rose’s belly is viewed followed by an extreme close-up depicting the hook of the wire hanger being run across Rose’s genitals before Leroy explicitly inserts the hook between her labia and then implicitly through the birth canal and into her uterus – again viewed in extreme close-up. Rose screams and writhes in pain before a squelching sound effect is heard and Leroy implicitly forces the implement deeper into her womb below screen. He continues to manipulate the wire hook below screen before, in another extreme close-up, blood streams from between Rose’s labia as Leroy manipulates her belly. The camera cuts to a close-up of Rose’s face, contorted in pain, before it cuts back to another extreme close-up of blood flowing from between Rose’s labia. Leroy exclaims “Got cha!” and Rose cries out in pain before the blood-smeared head of the infant is viewed exiting the birth canal. Leroy drags the baby from Rose’s body with the umbilical cord still attached and, with wide blood stains viewed on the bed linen, tosses the infant to the floor. An extreme close-up of the blood-covered infant is viewed before the scene ends at approximately 14 minutes.

 

This entire paragraph was REDACTED.
It was found to be Exempt under section 7(2) and Schedule 2 Part 2 Division 1
At approximately 31 minutes, when Russell tells a woman that she is “butt ugly” and looks pregnant, Hanger appears mesmerised by the woman’s protruding belly. He pushes the woman back on the couch saying “Give me baby”, then claws at the now screaming woman’s clothes and nuzzles at her breast while Russell, jumping up and down in excitement, looks on. At approximately 32 minutes, in an extreme close-up, Hanger lifts his head revealing a wide, open and bloody wound on the woman’s breast where he has implicitly bitten off her nipple and the surrounding flesh. Blood splatters over the screaming woman before the bitten section is dropped back onto her upper chest. The now blood-drenched woman continues to scream as Hanger savages her chest and body; gnawing and chewing on what appears to be bloodied viscera, entrails and flesh. The camera cuts to a front on close-up of the now silent woman and Hanger, both completely drenched in blood, then back to a close-up of Hanger as he continues to feed on and tear through the woman’s flesh and organs while repeating “give me baby”. The scene ends at approximately 35 minutes.

 

This entire paragraph was REDACTED.
It was found to be Exempt under section 7(2) and Schedule 2 Part 2 Division 1
At approximately 63 minutes, Phil, dressed as Santa Claus, having swallowed a handful of tablets in order to achieve “the hard-on of the century” and having rendered Russell and Hanger unconscious with GBH, exposes his erect penis before, thrusting vigorously, he implicitly anally rapes Russell. The scene cuts to a close-up of a female character’s genitals as she masturbates with a small implement, then to John, tied up and having been tortured with a blow torch, now having his face forced into the genitals of a semi-naked prostitute. The camera cuts back to Phil as he crosses to Hanger, lying unconscious on the couch, his colostomy bag having been pulled from the stoma in his abdomen. In an extreme close-up, Phil explicitly inserts his penis into the stoma and thrusts repeatedly as copious amounts of thick brown fluid ooze from the hole in Hanger’s belly.

 

In the opinion of the Board, this film contains depictions of violence, sexual violence and sexualised violence that are very high in impact and exceed what can be accommodated within the R18+ classification. As such, this film is Refused Classification pursuant to item 1(a) of the films table of the Code.

Decision:

This film is Refused Classification in accordance with item 1(a) of the films table of the National Classification Code.

 

Classification Board use only

Names of panel members constituted for decision

REDACTED - S47F (1)

Details of opinions (including minority views):

UNANIMOUS

A senior panellist has confirmed that the application was valid under the Act.

A senior panellist has confirmed that all members constituting the Board for this decision have considered the application and that this Decision Report is a true and accurate reflection of the Board's decision and any minority opinions

Decision signed off by a senior panellist.

Decision signed off by Director
Date
(required by all enforcement applications, commercial RC decisions and non-ISP ACMA RC decisions)

 

 

The dubious reasons for the redactions can be found in the following letter from the Attorney General's Department.

12/14604

22 January 2013

Mr Brendan Molloy
[REDACTED]
[REDACTED]

Sent by email to brendan.molloy@pirateparty.org.au

Dear Mr Molloy

Re: Freedom of Information Request – Stage 2 Release

I refer to your request to the Department under the Freedom of Information Act 1982 (‘the Act’) dated 17 September 2012. Your request was expressed in two parts. By agreement, Part A of your request was revised on 29 October 2012 and Part B was revised on 9 November 2012, such that your request, as revised, now seeks:

Part A
A machine-parseable dump (ie SQL dump) of the entire Classification database; and

Part B
Classification Board reports relating to the determination of an RC rating for content for the July-September 2012 quarter..

 

Decision

Pursuant to arrangements approved by the Secretary of this Department under section 23 of the Act, I am authorised to make decisions in relation to this matter on behalf of this Department.

This decision concerns Part B of your request and is the Stage 2 release which follows my Stage 1 decision of 27 November 2012 concerning Part A of the request.

I have decided to release the attached documents to you – some with deletions made to them. I trust they are useful. Where exemptions have been made, the provisions under which the material has been deleted are indicated on the face of the documents.

Section 26 of the FOI Act provides that where access to material has been denied to an applicant under the Act he or she shall be provided with a written statement setting out the finding on material questions of fact, the material on which those findings were based and the reasons for the decision. Such information, in relation to the material which has been exempted on this occasion, is set out below.

 

Findings on Material Questions of Fact

My finding on material questions of fact is that some of the documents you have requested contain:

· Material coming within the definition of ‘exempt content-service document’ in section 4 of the Act;

· Personal information about identified individuals; and

· Material concerning the business affairs of identified organisations.

 

Material on Which Those Findings are Based

The material on which those findings are based consists of the documents themselves.

 

Reasons for Decision

Section 7

I have decided that with respect to some of the material, this Department and the Classification Board are agencies which are exempt from the operation of the Act under section 7 and Schedule 2 Part II Division 1 of the Act. That section and schedule provide:

“Exemption of certain persons and bodies

7 (2) The persons, bodies and Departments specified in Part II of Schedule 2 are exempt from the operation of this Act in relation to the documents referred to in that Schedule in relation to them.”

“Schedule 2 Part II -- Agencies exempt in respect of particular documents Division 1

Attorney-General’s Department in relation to:

(c) exempt content-service documents concerning the performance of a function, or the exercise of a power, under Schedule 7 of the Broadcasting Services Act 1992;

Classification Board in relation to:

(a) exempt content-service documents concerning the performance of a function, or the exercise of a power, under Schedule 7 of the Broadcasting Services Act 1992;”

Section 4 of the Act defines “exempt content-service document” as:

“(a) a document containing content, or a record of content (within the meaning of Schedule 7 to the Broadcasting Services Act 1992 ), that:

(i) has been delivered by, or accessed using, a content service (within the meaning of that Schedule); and

(ii) was offensive content-service content when it was delivered by, or accessed using, that content service; or

(b) a document that sets out how to access, or that is likely to facilitate access to, offensive content-service content (for example, by setting out the name of a website, an IP address, a URL or a password).”

The simplified outline of Schedule 7 of the Broadcasting Services Act 1992 (Cth) provides:
“The following is a simplified outline of this Schedule:

• Content (other than an eligible electronic publication) is prohibited content if: (a) the content has been classified RC or X 18+ by the Classification Board; or ………….

• Content that consists of an eligible electronic publication is prohibited content if the content has been classified RC, category 2 restricted or category 1 restricted by the Classification Board.

• Generally, content is potential prohibited content if the content has not been classified by the Classification Board, but if it were to be classified, there is a substantial likelihood that the content would be prohibited content.”

I have decided that some of the deleted material falls within these definitions and, as such, this Department and the Classification Board are agencies which are exempt from the operation of the Act as being required to disclose this material.

 

Section 47F

Some of the material is conditionally exempt under section 47F(1) of the Act which provides:

“(1) A document is conditionally exempt if its disclosure under this Act would involve the unreasonable disclosure of personal information about any person (including a deceased person). “

The material which I have deleted under this provision is, in my view, conditionally exempt because it contains personal information about identifiable individuals – the disclosure of which I have decided would be unreasonable.

Section 11A(5) of the Act provides that a conditionally exempt document must be released to an applicant unless its disclosure would, on balance, be contrary to the public interest. I have decided that disclosure of the material I have deleted would, on balance, be contrary to the public interest. That is because, in my view, the factors in favour of disclosure (for instance, the public’s right to view Government-held documents) is outweighed on this occasion by the factors against disclosure, such as the individual’s right to privacy.

 

Section 47G

Some of the material is, in my view, conditionally exempt under section 47G of the Act. Section 47G(1)(a) provides:

“A document is conditionally exempt if its disclosure under this Act would disclose information concerning a person in respect of his or her business or professional affairs or concerning the business, commercial or financial affairs of an organisation or undertaking, in a case in which the disclosure of the information:

(a) would, or could reasonably be expected to, unreasonably affect that person adversely in respect of his or her lawful business or professional affairs or that organisation or undertaking in respect of its lawful business, commercial or financial affairs;”

I have decided that disclosure of the information would constitute unreasonable disclosure of business affairs in circumstances where it would reasonably be expected to prejudice the affairs of the organisation concerned and cause harm and damage to that organisation.

As a conditionally exempt document, I have also considered the public interest factors both in favour and against disclosure of the information as required by section 11A(5) of the Act – which, as stated above, provides that a conditionally exempt document must be released unless its disclosure would, on balance, be contrary to the public interest. I have in this instance weighed the importance of the accountability and transparency of government processes against the need for private sector organisations to be able to conduct their affairs with a degree of privacy. On this occasion I have decided that disclosure of the information would be contrary to the public interest.

 

Right of Review

Should you wish to have my decision in this matter reviewed, you have two options. First, you can have it reviewed by a senior officer of this Department. Should you wish to pursue that course of action you should write to me within 30 days of receiving this letter. Alternatively, you can seek to have it externally reviewed by the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner (OAIC). Should you wish to pursue that course of action you should, within 60 days of receiving this letter, write to the OAIC requesting a review. The OAIC’s address is GPO Box 2999, Canberra City, ACT, 2601.

In this respect, I confirm the advice in my previous letter that the time limits for review of my decisions in either Stage 1 or Stage 2 will commence from the date of this letter.

Yours sincerely

Stuart Plowman
Legal Officer
FOI & Privacy Section
Office of Corporate Counsel
Attorney-General’s Department
3-5 National Circuit
BARTON ACT 2600
Telephone: (02) 6141 4105
Email: stuart.plowman@ag.gov.au

 

 

November 2011: Secrecy and the Australian Classification Board

Thanks to Matthew for sending in this submission that he made to the 'National Classification Review Discussion Paper'. This was conducted by the Australian Law Reform Commission in 2011.

 

I would first like to state that I support a loosening up of the Classification system. The RC-rating should be abolished and replaced with an unrated classification, and the X18+ rating should be self-accessed by the adult industry. In addition, parents should be provided with as much information as possible to make a decision about what their children watch or play.

I would like to focus on the area of accountability in the Australian Classification process.

I believe any review of the ratings system must look at the transparency of the Classification Board. Apart from the classification warnings (strong violence, drug use, etc), we have no way of consistently knowing why a rating has been awarded, or not awarded in the case of RC.

Currently the system works as follows.

 

The process of the Classification Board:

The rating is awarded and the entry usually appears one to five days later in the online database.

The database entry shows.

Classification: PG, MA15+ etc
Consumer Advice: Strong violence, drug use etc
Category: film, game, publication etc
Version: ‘Original’ means first time viewed, or ‘Modified’, means it has been seen more than once.
Duration: Time rounded to the nearest minute. For a long period, this was blank, but for the past year or so, they have reappeared.
Date of Classification: Self-explanatory
Author: In the case of film, this means the Director
Publisher: In the case of film, this means the Producer
Production Company: e.g. MGM, Universal etc
Country of Origin: Self-explanatory Applicant: The person or company that submitted it for rating.
File Number: Self-explanatory
Classification Number: Self-explanatory

 

Very occasionally, the Classification Board will issue a media release in which they further explain the reasons behind a rating. Usually these are for films such as the HARRY POTTER series that are M-rated, but also appeal to children. In 2011, only two such media releases have been issued. 1

Although they do not publicise the fact, the Classification Board will release the full rating report to members of the public. To do this they must write and supply their full name and address, and a copy will be posted to them. I suspect the only reason the Board continues with this out dated and low-key approach, is to minimise the public using this service. Currently, this mainly seems to be used by journalists when a video game is banned. 2

 

The process of the Classification Review Board

A review is called, and a date set.

A media release is issued. 3

The Board meets, and makes a decision. A media release is usually issued 4 one or two days later.

The full Classification Review Board report is published on the Classification website. This appears approximately one or two months later. 5

The relative transparency of the Classification Review Board is in stark contrast to the Classification Board.

 

Improvements required to the system

The British Board of Film Classification (BBFC) was once a highly secretive organisation. However, over the past ten years, they have gradually reformed, and their information department currently presents an excellent model for us.

 

BBFC vs. CB: A rated item

This is a comparison of how the Classification Board (CB) compares to the BBFC when releasing information about a rated item.

Item rated, and published in database.

a.
BBFC: Contains running time to the second.
CB: Contains running time rounded to the minute.

 b.
BBFC: States if item was censored.
CB: Does not state if it has been censored. The submission listing of ‘modified’ just means it has been previously rated.

c.
BBFC: Lists all previous submissions, even those under alternative titles. These document times, cuts, etc.
CB: Does not list previous submissions. The submission listing of ‘modified’ just means it has been previously rated. This could have been in 1971, and under an alternative title.

d.
BBFC: Over the past few years, they have introduced the extended classification option. This information is especially useful for parents. It goes beyond the classification warnings, to explain what the item contains. It is so in-depth that it may end up revealing plot spoilers. Because of this, by default, the BBFC hides it in the database entry. It can be found by clicking on the ‘Extended Classification Information is available for this work’ text at the top of the database entry. 6
CB: The closest that the CB have are the very rare media releases that they release warning parents. So far, in 2011, only two of these have been issued.

 

BBFC vs. CB: A banned or censored item

The Classification Board should be informing the public when they have taken the step of preventing an adult from viewing or playing something. In this case, I will use A SERBIAN FILM as an example as it had censorship problems in both countries.

 

A SERBIAN FILM at the BBFC Cuts of 04:11 was required before an 18 rating was awarded. A database entry 7 lists the exact time, extended classification information, and details of the cuts.

It also lists ‘Some Cuts Substituted’, which means that the distributor used other footage to mask cuts. Therefore, the final 99:25 running time may include masking footage.

In addition, the BBFC issued a media release explaining the cuts 8, and their Student site includes an in-depth case study of the film. 9

 

A SERBIAN FILM at the Classification Board

A 99m version was first banned in November 2010. No further information, apart from a database entry was made. 10

A 97m version was banned in February 2011. No further information, apart from a database entry was made. 11

A 96m version was rated R18+ (High impact sexual violence, sex scenes and violence) in April 2011. No further information, apart from a database entry was made. 12

Compare this with the amount of information that the BBFC supplied about the censorship. In our case, the Classification Board did not even consider it necessary to inform the public why the film had been banned. In addition, we have no way of knowing the exact length of the cuts because of the rounding to the nearest minute. 99m censored to 96m could mean a final time of anything from 96:29 or 95:31.

Note that the first two database entries were under the original title of SRPSKI FILM, while the second two were under A SERBIAN FILM. Unless you know this, there is no way to link them together. Contrast this with the BBFC who provide a list of prior submissions.

 

A SERBIAN FILM at the Classification Review Board

In August 2011, the CRB announced a review of the R18+ rated A SERBIAN FILM. A media release was issued. 13

In September 2011, the CRB announced that they had banned the R18+ rated A SERBIAN FILM. A media release was issued. 14

The 96m version (formerly R18+) was listed in the database with an RC-rating. No further information was made available. 15

As of today, November 18, the full CRB report has yet to be published on their website. 16 Why does it take over two months to produce a report?

 

Conclusion

If the public is to have faith in the ratings system, they need to be fully informed.

The Classification Board should publically release as much information as possible about their decisions.

The BBFC’s website, including separate sections for children, parents, and students, should be used as a model.

 

1. http://www.classification.gov.au/www/cob/classification.nsf/Page/InformationCentre_MediaReleases_2011MediaReleases

2. http://www.kotaku.com.au/2011/08/this-is-why-house-of-the-dead-overkill-extended-cut-was-refused-classification/

3. http://www.classification.gov.au/www/cob/rwpattach.nsf/VAP/(3A6790B96C927794AF1031D9395C5C20)~Media+release+-+Mortal+Kombat.doc/$file/Media+release+-+Mortal+Kombat.doc

4. http://www.classification.gov.au/www/cob/rwpattach.nsf/VAP/(084A3429FD57AC0744737F8EA134BACB)~Media+release+-Mortal+Kombat+-+11+Mar+2011+RC.DOC/$file/Media+release+-Mortal+Kombat+-+11+Mar+2011+RC.DOC

5. http://www.classification.gov.au/www/cob/classification.nsf/Page/ClassificationinAustralia_Whoweare_ClassificationReviewBoardDecisions_ClassificationReviewBoardDecisions

6. http://www.bbfc.co.uk/classification/eci/

7. http://www.bbfc.co.uk/AFV272236/

8. http://www.bbfc.co.uk/newsreleases/2010/08/bbfc-cuts-a-sernian-film-and-remake-of-i-spit-on-your-grave/

9. http://www.sbbfc.co.uk/CaseStudies/A_Serbian_Film__Srpski_Film

10. http://www.classification.gov.au/www/cob/find.nsf/d853f429dd038ae1ca25759b0003557c/243d814a377ff75fca2577ea0058041c?OpenDocument

11. http://www.classification.gov.au/www/cob/find.nsf/d853f429dd038ae1ca25759b0003557c/e6fb880ad809d1b0ca2578400057f12d?OpenDocument

12. http://www.classification.gov.au/www/cob/find.nsf/d853f429dd038ae1ca25759b0003557c/ac6b550c40d6cf80ca25786a005d728e?OpenDocument

13. http://www.classification.gov.au/www/cob/rwpattach.nsf/VAP/(9A5D88DBA63D32A661E6369859739356)~Media+release+-+announcing+review+-+A+Serbian+Film.doc/$file/Media+release+-+announcing+review+-+A+Serbian+Film.doc

14. http://www.classification.gov.au/www/cob/rwpattach.nsf/VAP/(9A5D88DBA63D32A661E6369859739356)~Media+release+-+announcing+review+decision+-+A+Serbian+Film.doc/$file/Media+release+-+announcing+review+decision+-+A+Serbian+Film.doc

15. http://www.classification.gov.au/www/cob/find.nsf/d853f429dd038ae1ca25759b0003557c/2241632cd8acfb45ca257913005d86b2?OpenDocument

16.http://www.classification.gov.au/www/cob/classification.nsf/Page/ClassificationinAustralia_Whoweare_ClassificationReviewBoardDecisions_ReviewBoarddecisions-2011


 

 

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