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Films given a different rating by the local town council than by the BBFC

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  • Films given a different rating by the local town council than by the BBFC

    The rating given to a film by the BBFC is the official rating that film has been given throughout the UK. However, the local town council can either ban the film or change its rating. Can anyone remember an instance of a film being banned in cinemas in their area, or being rated differently from its official UK rating?
    "The answer to the ultimate question, of life, the universe and everything is .....42"

  • #2
    Re: Films given a different rating by the local town council than by the BBFC

    My Dad can remember some of the controversial films in the early 1970s were subject to local bans.
    The Trickster On The Roof

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    • #3
      Re: Films given a different rating by the local town council than by the BBFC

      I believe that it can depend on: A) How much of the film has been edited out; and B) Whether local councils have a more "Mary Whitehouse" approach to censorship.

      When I started the Don't Look Now film thread a few weeks ago, I was thinking back to whether it had been an 18 or a 15 - of course, the film was made before the 1982 changes when the X and A certificates were changed to U, PG, 15 and 18. It can also depend on whether a film is seen in the cinema or on TV, or even released on video or DVD - I assume that even if nothing is edited, the format of the film can also change the BBFC certificate, and sometimes mainstream films can even differ between U and PG. I have always assumed that the cinema version was the default of the BBFC categorisation.
      Telling it almost exactly like it was so many years later - and proud of doing so!

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      • #4
        Re: Films given a different rating by the local town council than by the BBFC

        I believe the Exorcist was banned regionally
        Ejector seat?...your jokin!

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        • #5
          Re: Films given a different rating by the local town council than by the BBFC

          I have a friend 12/13 years older than me who claimed his local cinema showed an edited version of "Deep Throat" despite the film being forbidden to be shown nationwide in Britain.
          Last edited by philipdalton; 08-12-2019, 18:47.
          "The answer to the ultimate question, of life, the universe and everything is .....42"

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          • #6
            Re: Films given a different rating by the local town council than by the BBFC

            I think my reason for starting this thread is because I seem to remember, in a documentary on the film 'Grease', someone mentioning not being allowed to see the film, whereas round where I lived it was the film every kid was going to see.
            Last edited by philipdalton; 08-12-2019, 19:00.
            "The answer to the ultimate question, of life, the universe and everything is .....42"

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            • #7
              Re: Films given a different rating by the local town council than by the BBFC

              I am racking my brains trying to think why youngsters would not be allowed to see the film Grease (which I assume was the original 1978 version of it) - I believe there is some mild bad language in the dialogue, and it was released as a PG (post-1982 at least), but even then I would still regard it as a family film which has been shown on BBC 1 in the afternoon or early evening, although one assumes that the duration was a lot shorter than its cinema version, and various scenes removed.

              I know from watching the recent theatre production of Grease back in September that the dialogue does have mild bad language in it - as I have said before, I saw a matinee performance at the Leicester Curve and the audience had more sensitive types such as pensioners and school pupils (who were on a school trip to the theatre), and I believe that the dialogue would mirror image the film dialogue quite closely.

              I know that Grease is quite a sexy film, especially with the Travolta / Newton-John songs performed, but I would hardly give it a 15 or higher rating uncut - I think that even a 12 would be exaggerating.
              Telling it almost exactly like it was so many years later - and proud of doing so!

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              • #8
                Re: Films given a different rating by the local town council than by the BBFC

                "Monty Python's Life of Brian" was a film that fell foul of boycotting by some town councils. They must have felt that a film lampooning Christianity should not be allowed in a Christian country.
                "The answer to the ultimate question, of life, the universe and everything is .....42"

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                • #9
                  Re: Films given a different rating by the local town council than by the BBFC

                  Originally posted by tex View Post
                  I believe the Exorcist was banned regionally
                  Did The Shining ever make it to the cinemas? - before my time if it did.
                  Telling it almost exactly like it was so many years later - and proud of doing so!

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                  • #10
                    Re: Films given a different rating by the local town council than by the BBFC

                    Originally posted by George 1978 View Post
                    Did The Shining ever make it to the cinemas? - before my time if it did.
                    If you look on the official BBFC website it will tell you the name of every single film that was submitted to them, and whether they passed it, rejected it or cut it, and which certificate was given to it, and on what date. There are also case studies of many films and other information.
                    "The answer to the ultimate question, of life, the universe and everything is .....42"

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                    • #11
                      Re: Films given a different rating by the local town council than by the BBFC

                      Originally posted by George 1978 View Post
                      Did The Shining ever make it to the cinemas? - before my time if it did.
                      I saw it in a cinema at the time, yes :-)
                      Time flies like the wind, fruit flies like bananas - go figure!

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                      • #12
                        Re: Films given a different rating by the local town council than by the BBFC

                        Originally posted by philipdalton View Post
                        If you look on the official BBFC website it will tell you the name of every single film that was submitted to them, and whether they passed it, rejected it or cut it, and which certificate was given to it, and on what date. There are also case studies of many films and other information.
                        Many thanks - it would be interesting which local cinemas would have shown it.
                        Telling it almost exactly like it was so many years later - and proud of doing so!

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                        • #13
                          Re: Films given a different rating by the local town council than by the BBFC

                          Originally posted by zabadak View Post
                          I saw it in a cinema at the time, yes :-)
                          Many thanks again.
                          Telling it almost exactly like it was so many years later - and proud of doing so!

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                          • #14
                            Re: Films given a different rating by the local town council than by the BBFC

                            I have been a little surprised to find that the film 'Kes' was actually given a 'U' certificate in 1969 despite containing the phrase 'hands off cocks on socks' and numerous uses of the words 'bloody', '*******', 'sod' and 'bugger'. At the time giving it an A certificate would have meant that no- one under 16 would have been able to see it unaccompanied, and so it was therefore considered unnecessary to classify it anything higher than a U. But the type of language used in it would be unheard of in a U film nowadays.
                            Last edited by philipdalton; 13-12-2019, 02:44.
                            "The answer to the ultimate question, of life, the universe and everything is .....42"

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                            • #15
                              Re: Films given a different rating by the local town council than by the BBFC

                              Originally posted by philipdalton View Post
                              I have been a little surprised to find that the film 'Kes' was actually given a 'U' certificate in 1969 despite containing the phrase 'hands off cocks on socks' and numerous uses of the words 'bloody', '*******', 'sod' and 'bugger'. At the time giving it an A certificate would have meant that no- one under 16 would have been able to see it unaccompanied, and so it was therefore considered unnecessary to classify it anything higher than a U. But the type of language used in it would be unheard of in a U film nowadays.
                              The pre-recorded tape I have of it is rated PG.
                              The Trickster On The Roof

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