Blackmail + Talk by Kevin Rockett

Director: Alfred Hitchcock

U.K.| 1929. Black and white. 96 min.

In this, the ?rst of more than ten Alfred Hitchcock ?lms to be banned or cut, Ireland’s ?rst Film Censor, James Montgomery objected to the attempted rape—a forbidden theme—during which the character Alice kills her attacker. Equally, he was concerned with Alice’s undressing and ‘the passionate kissing’. Following cuts, Blackmail was passed. Similar cuts with regard to kissing scenes referred to by Montgomery as the ‘most unsanitary salute’ were made to thousands of ?lms, including others by Hitchcock. In the case of I Confess (1953), the Censor cut a soft-focus teenage love scene between a young man before he becomes a priest and a woman who later marries but remains in love with the priest. It would seem that priests were not allowed to have an emotional life, even before being ordained.

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