A Week of Controversy in Film

The Human Centipede sequel saga has continued this week, as the distributors have appealed against the decisions made by the British Board of Film Classification (BBFC).

By refusing to give the film any classification, the BBFC have ruled that it cannot be legally screened, sold or downloaded anywhere within the UK. While the first film presented its plot as a bizarre ‘medical experiment’ and incorporates the perspectives of the victims, the sequel however, The Human Centipede II (Full Sequence), reportedly focuses on the “sexual arousal of the central character at both the idea and the spectacle of the total degradation, humiliation, mutilation, torture and murder of his naked victims”, it also does little to portray the victims as other than objects.

However, there have been many criticisms of the decision since it was announced. The film’s director, Tom Six, hit back at the BBFC’s explanation of its decision, saying that they has unfairly revealed plot details and film spoilers. Others have simply stated that they felt the decision of whether or not to watch the film should be left in the hands of the viewers themselves.

It is worth noting that this is a rather unusual decision from the BBFC, who have only ever denied ratings to eleven films in total. However, eight of these film have since been given permission to be shown.

The BBFC have also revealed this week that the 2010 film about which it received the most complaints was Peter Jackson’s The Lovely Bones, starring Saoirse Ronan. The film was only given a 12A rating, despite following the story of a young girl who is brutally murdered.

Other films which caused the BBFC to receive various complaints included Kick-Ass, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1, and even Disney’s The Princess and the Frog.

Meanwhile, the BBC have also come under attack for their decision to broadcast a documentary film showing a British man dying at a Swedish assisted suicide clinic. Choosing to Die, which was presented by author Sir Terry Pratchett, prompted a total of 898 complaints, many of which stated that the film gave an unbalanced and idealistic representation of the controversial topic.

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