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VIDEO NASTIES: MORAL PANIC, CENSORSHIP & VIDEOTAPE

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72 minutes| UK| 2010| Colour


Jake West’s documentary offers a fascinating snapshot of the events leading to the introduction of the UK’s Video Recordings Act of 1984, specifically designed to curtail the distribution of films apparently responsible for, as the Daily Mail delicately put it, the ‘rape of our children’s minds’. Nice. In total, a whopping 72 titles appeared on a Department of Public Prosecutions list of ‘video nasties’, amongst them Dario Argento’s Inferno and Sam Raimi’s original Evil Dead, alongside notorious ‘nasties’ like Abel Ferrara’s The Driller Killer and I Spit On Your Grave – some films have yet to be released uncut on British shores. Here, the director of Razor Blade Smile and Doghouse takes a level-headed approach to one of the most shocking – for all the wrong reasons – eras in British film history, with contributions from, amongst others, Sir Graham Bright, the MP directly responsible for the Video Recordings Act. Be warned, however, that the content of this film may corrupt your morals.

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