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Kinokima

Banning of Films

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I feel this misunderstanding was partly my fault. I was the one who used the term "thought police"with regard to "political correctness", and james was actually responding to that. He said:

 

"If being 'PC' is 'the new millenium's version of thought police' than at least it is better than the older versions; being racist, sexist, etc..."

 

This was actually a logical point, one which I hadn't considered before. I don't really like terms like "thought police", it's over-dramatic, I shouldn't have used it. I'd never thought before in terms of the prevailing ideas of the day being their own kind of "political correctness", ie , when racism was the "norm", was considered an acceptable attitude, that was a kind of political correctness of its own.

 

I do feel, whatever labels we give ideas, that it is never a good idea to "re-write" history, to try to alter the facts if we don't like them. Slavery existed. The Holocaust happened. To try to soften the fact of these evils is to in some way deny the truth . There are many terrible, shameful events in human history. To acknowledge that they happened is not to absolve those who committed them, it's not to say it's all right that those horrors occurred. But it is very important that we do not try to change what has happened in the past. True, how past events are reported and interpreted will always be subject to whoever is writing the history books, but to somehow try to erase or eradicate the fact of the events will benefit no one, including those whom the revisionists are trying to protect.

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I see that you understood the point I was making and I'm glad that my post didn't offend you. I almost didn't post it because I was concerned about that.

 

I agree with your view about not re-writting history. All films say something about our history (some we may wish to forget).

 

But the view that flims will be banned is way overblown in my view. The court just overturned a ban on those sick movies where gals in high-heels kill small animals (e.g. kittens), saying the ban was not constitutional as it relates to the free speech.

 

If these movies cannot be banned we don't have to worry about Gone With The Wind! Really, the fear of a ban is nonsense.

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Jamesjazzguitar we are not worried these films will be banned. We are discussing whether they should be banned based on their racist content.

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I kind of wish you hadn't recounted that story about the kittens. I had no idea that sort of thing existed. Now I feel kind of sick.

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I can see limiting the viewing of films with racist or hateful content in certain very specific situations. For example, to African-American children under a certain age.

 

But limiting the viewing of a film is NOT the same as banning it. I guess I can go back and read all the prior postings but I don't see how anyone could make a solid case for banning a film because of racist content.

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If you read the Audrey Hepburn/Emma Thompson post pages 2 & 3 you will see how this topic got started. I just created this thread so not to bring that one completely off topic which it was in danger of becoming.

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I do not know how many of you know what it is like to live where films are banned. I was raised with it.

 

I believe bans are important because they mean people will preserve films which might otherwise be lost or ignored. Many films have extant copies only because people wanted to collect banned works and hid prints from authorities.

 

My uncle ran small illicit theater. He was always first to get list of new movies which it was illegal to import or own. Those were ones he asked sailors to bring into country for him to show. I later learned many movies had larger distribution where they were banned because they were too avant-garde to be liked by legal audiences.

 

How many people heard of Salman Rushdie's Satanic Verses before it was banned, burned and a fatwa issued against the author?

 

*Triumph of the Will* is wonderful cinematography. Very few would know this masterpiece if it were not wrapped in controversy for content. It would only be film-school material for study of camera angles and perspectives.

 

The self-righteous and ****-neurotic pcs of the world are doing much to preserve widespread awareness of works whose form-content-style niche markets are very small.

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Well as the old saying goes; Be careful what you wish for.

 

A ban often leads to more exposure.

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> {quote:title=SansFin wrote:}{quote}

> *Triumph of the Will* is wonderful cinematography. Very few would know this masterpiece if it were not wrapped in controversy for content. It would only be film-school material for study of camera angles and perspectives.

 

Leni in the bucket:

 

http://peternicholson.com.au/images/Leni.jpg

 

Find the bucket:

 

 

 

Clue: Watch carefully and you can see the bucket briefly, starting at 2:34 into this clip, and again at 2:54.

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Louis B. Mayer tried & failed to destroy Citizen Kane. All That Money Can Buy was destroyed & great efforts were made to restore it. The original credits are lost. Louis B. Mayer was behind the plot to destroy Magnificent Ambersons. A govmint official was put up to officially request Orson Welles make a good will film outside the USA. As soon as he left, the studio was locked & MAGNIFICENT AMBERSONS reshot & destroyed. Louis B. Mayer was behind the plot to destroy GHOST SHIP in which he saw himself as the ships captain. A phony plagiarism lawsuit was concocted & it was successful. GHOST SHIP was mothballed for 50 years. Louis B. Mayer was behind the plot to blacklist hollywood. He was successful.

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> {quote:title=FredCDobbs wrote:}{quote}

> Here?s an Ingrid Bergman film banned in the US:

>

> Ingrid Bergman in ?Die vier Gesellen?, Berlin (1938)

>

> http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZLIEjOW3YCk

>

> http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=13P5T013F5Y&feature=related

>

>

>

>

 

 

Oh not that film again. Just because it has not been shown on TCM does not mean it is banned or that it will never be shown.

 

 

And thanks for that list Hamradio. Some of those films I might not want to see for myself but I certainly would not want to stop other people from watching them.

 

Edited by: Kinokima on Aug 12, 2010 8:46 PM

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I checked out that link about the 10 films that were banned and it didn't tell me what I wanted to know: Where there laws passed that really banned these movies and if yes, what was the penalty and did the law withstand a legal battle? i.e. was the ban deamed constitutional.

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I assuming it is like the list of top banned books. They probably are not banned everywhere just in certain places/cases.

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You hit on what I was thinking about: Does a city have the legal power to ban a film for content (i.e. something that isn't porn)?

 

I don't see how a city would have the legal power to do so since that would be a clear up violation of the free speech. Yes, they can put a lot of preasure on a theater to not make it worth their while to show something but if the theater doesn't agree I don't think they can call in the cops and close the theater down.

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Here?s a documentary film you might enjoy seeing. You can click to enlarge the image to full screen:

 

http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=1992130789606468647#

 

It tells about German television broadcasts from 1935 to 1944. Generally only Berlin people could watch these broadcasts and only in ?Television Parlors?, which were small theaters located around downtown Berlin, where several TV sets were placed on elevated stands so that a small audience could watch the live and filmed programs. A few top officials had TV sets at their homes in Berlin.

 

This film was filed away after the war and only rediscovered recently.

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*If you look at the list of OUR GANG comedies, you will see that a great many of them have been edited or banned:*

 

LAZY DAYS: Withdrawn from television package due to racial humor involving African-Americans.

 

MOAN AND GROAN: Withdrawn from television package due to racial/ethnic humor involving Jewish-Americans and African Americans.

 

THE FIRST SEVEN YEARS: Television prints edited for racial humor involving African Americans.

 

A TOUGH WINTER: Withdrawn from television package due to racial humor involving African-Americans.

 

SCHOOL'S OUT: Television prints edited due to stereotyping of women and racial humor involving African Americans.

 

And so on...you get the idea.

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Our_Gang_filmography

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> {quote:title=jamesjazzguitar wrote:}{quote}

> You hit on what I was thinking about: Does a city have the legal power to ban a film for content (i.e. something that isn't porn)?

>

> I don't see how a city would have the legal power to do so since that would be a clear up violation of the free speech.

 

Originally, under the US Constitution, the cities, counties, and states had such rights to ban for ?decency?. The ?free speech? Amendment applied only to the federal Congress, not the states. The 9th and 10th Amendments allowed the states to have a lot of local autonomy to have their own censorship laws.

 

Also, the 1st Amendment ?freedom of the press? clause refers only to the federal Congress, not to the states, and the ?press? is NOT ?the media?. The ?press? is a specific machine, a ?printing press?. So, the federal government, through Congress, couldn?t pass any restrictive anti-press laws. But the states could.

 

However, the Supreme Courts have taken over the Constitution during the past 200 years, and now we and the states have to follow the Supreme Court rulings, no matter what the Constitution actually says.

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*But how do we decide which films are the most valuable to our society?*

 

ALL films are valuable. Whether they are glossy Hollywood studio era, modern CGI extravagances, independent films, shorts, foreign, cult films, B films, C films, schlock films, explotation films, etc.

 

The bottom line is that film is an art form. Would you advocate for burning other works of art that offend your sensibilities?

 

We are a country with a racist past that, too often, ended in tragedy. You can consign it to the history books and talk about it in class but film has the power to show that racist attitude in a manner that neither books or words can touch.

 

Show *To Kill a Mockingbird* to a class and you immediately show them the effects of racism in a visual manner that they understand.

 

Each year, TCM hosts a month-long series *Race and Hollywood* that focuses on how badly we used to stereotype various ethnic and social groups and shows how, as we as a nation have grown, those images changed.

 

To say these films should be banned or burned is to start down a very slippery slope of censorship. Who decides what films should be burned? What happens if you are caught with a copy, are you put on trial for having offensive material?

 

Why stop at films that may offend someone (and there will always be one person who will gladly say something offends them just for the satisfaction of going against the grain), after that you might as well ban **Huck Finn*, *Oliver Twist*, *To Kill a Mockingbird*, *The Merchant of Venice* and any other work of art that someone finds offensive.

 

Film has the power to show us how we once were and it has the power to help change that attitude. To say that films that have offensive stereotypes should be altered, banned and/or burned instead of learning from them is to deny future generations the ability to see how far we've come and to realize how far we still have to go.

 

Film is art. I don't condone the banning/burning of works of any art for any reason. If I don't like a particular piece, I don't have to look at it. But no one should have the right to choose for the majority what art should be destroyed.

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think the version of "Schools Out" that I have is uncut. Instead of the mild racial overtones in the movie, how about Miss Crabtree, a grown woman kissing one of her students, Jackie Cooper on the lips?

 

I bet every little boy sitting in the theatres back then throwed up.

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What do these books have in common:

 

A Clockwork Orange

Carrie

East of Eden

Huckleberry Finn

One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest

Grapes of Wrath

Lord of the Flies

Catch 22

Fanny Hill

 

All the above books were at one time or another were banned in America.

 

All the above were also made into films........

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In general I am opposed to banning movies. However, if someone proposed

banning Sun Valley Serenade or Dangerous When Wet, I would probably

have to reconsider my position.

 

Thank goodness the basic rights guaranteed by the First Amendment apply to

every part of the U.S. Can you imagine the idiocy of every town having the ability

to have control over freedom of speech, religion, and assembly? A state setting

up its own official religion? A county not allowing any freedom of assembly?

Ridiculous.

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