Apparently the British Board of Film Classification shares in some of our readers who believe that the Japanese horror film “Grotesque” is just that — too grotesque for moviegoers. (You can read our review of “Grotesque”, and the current ongoing argument in the comments section here.) According to the Daily Mail, the BBFC has declined to give “Grotesque” the Certificate 18 it was seeking, effectively banning the film in the UK under the explanation that it may constitute a “risk of harm” to viewers.
The decision is a rare one, and comes from the BBFC’s director David Cooke, who said this:
“Unlike other recent torture-themed horror works, such as the Saw and Hostel series, Grotesque features minimal narrative or character development and presents the audience with little more than an unrelenting and escalating scenario of humiliation, brutality and sadism. The chief pleasure on offer seems to be in the spectacle of sadism (including sexual sadism) for its own sake. Rejecting a work outright is a serious matter and the board considered whether the issue could be dealt with through cuts. However, given the unacceptable content featured throughout cutting the work is not a viable option in this case and the work is therefore refused a classification.”
The last film to be rejected by the BBFC was 2004’s “Murder Set Pieces”, which we also reviewed here. Gee, I hope this isn’t some kind of pattern…
Outright denial of a certificate by the BBFC means that the film can no longer be sold within UK limits, although I’m not sure how this effects online distribution of the film, as I still see the movie being sold on sites like Play.com and hmv.com, both UK-based DVD suppliers.