In case you’ve been living on another planet the last week, you should be aware of the BBFC’s decision to ban Tom Six’s The Human Centipede 2: Full Sequence, his sequel to his 2009 movie The Human Centipede: First Sequence. The band has caused one hell of a debate as to what is right and what is wrong, what should be allowed to be viewed and what shouldn’t and how far can too far go. It has been the talking point of the week, with Six himself responding in an angry rant and Eureka Entertainment (the films UK distributor) claiming they will appeal, but giving a very brief statement. They have now issued a full statement for their appeal, please, read on and let us know what you think:
Within the last week, the BBFC (British Board of Film Classification) announced that it had rejected and was unable to classify for release on DVD, The Human Centipede II (Full Sequence).
Bounty Films, and its UK distribution partner Eureka Entertainment Ltd., are disappointed by the decision of the BBFC to deny the film a classification certificate. While both companies respect the authority of the board, we strongly disagree with their decision.
In support of their decision, the BBFC issued a press release that gave an unprecedented level of detail regarding certain scenes contained within the film. Whilst it appears customary for the BBFC to issue press releases in support of its decision making, the level of detail provided therein does seem inconsistent with previous releases where the statements have been more concise. We are concerned this may be prejudicial to our forthcoming appeal.
The Human Centipede II (Full Sequence) is adult entertainment for fans of horror films. If a film of this nature does not seek to push boundaries, to challenge people and their value systems or to shock, then it is not horror. The subject matter of this film is in line with not only the genre, but other challenging entertainment choices for adult consumers.
We respect those who have different opinions about both the film and the genre, and whose opinions may differ to our own, but we hope that the opinions of the adults for whom this product is intended will also be considered. The adult consumers who would watch this film fully understand that it is fictional entertainment and nothing more.
Classifying and rating product allows the public to make an informed choice about the art and media they wish to consume. Censoring or preventing the public from obtaining material that has not been proven to be harmful or obscene, is indefensible in principle and is often counterproductive in practice. Through their chosen course of action, the BBFC have ensured that the awareness of this film is now greater than it would otherwise have been.
Having taken advice on these matters, and in accordance with BBFC guidelines, we will be submitting our appeal to the Video Appeals Committee in due course.
I believe this to be a very sound argument, and even though it feels they believe they have no chance of winning, at least they make their points known. On this very site we said how this massive issue has given the movie a huge audience, an much bigger audience than what would have watched it had it been released with no fuss. More people will want to see it now, for the wrong reasons, and these will be the people that the film can harm, the one’s who want to watch something nasty and horrific to ‘get off’ on it. Thanks to the BBFC, all the wrong people are now not onyl aware of the film, but also of some of the content, and this could well be far more dangerous as people will simply download the movie and it will now get seen by more than just its intended audience.
I feel the BBFC should not have given away major plot details in their case as this is damaging to what Tom Six’s goal was, to hide the content so that his audience could enjoy that ‘not knowing shock’ factor. Ah well, it is doubtful the case will be over-turned as there has been far too much coverage of the movie now, and if the BBFC backed down now, hundreds of movies would start appealing to cuts and bans and the BBFC would be in a right mess. To be fair to the BBFC, they have been far more lenient of recent years and it is very rare they ban a movie. The last movie to actually be banned with no UK release, even cut, was the Asian horror Grotesque in 2009 so we should at least be thankful to them for allowing us to view more than we could, say, twenty years ago. But then, you have to wonder, if the US and Australia can see it uncut, then why can’t we?
By Matt Wavish