A History of Hollywood’s Sex-Obsessed Censorship in Film: VIDEO


If you've ever wondered why you can blow someone's head off on-screen, but you can't blow someone's "head" off on-screen, this Cinefix video does a great job outlining the early history of censorship in the U.S. mainstream film industry and how we arbitrarily put sex above violence on the "adult-content" list. 





  1. says

    It’s a weird thing, eh? David Bowie’s original album art for “the man who sold the world” was considered inappropriate for Americans. So the image, Bowie with luxurious hang reclining on a chaise-longue in a “gender-bending” outfit was rejected and replaced with something more “acceptable for Americans” – a man holding a gun.

    sex is bad. cannabis is bad. nudity is bad. MALE nudity will kill children. but hey, let’s glorify guns and get as many kids into these violent films as possible. #butwhy?

  2. Talisman says

    @craig I’ve seen “This film is not yet rated”, and it’s an excellent discussion of the MPAA. In fact, the footage of the woman discussing “Boys Don’t Cry” is taken from that documentary.

  3. mike says

    I think the definitive movie about censorship is probably “The Celluloid Closet”. This little clip is a condensed (and not very good) version of what Vita Russo was writing about decades ago.

  4. BobN says

    “no one was talking about mass censorship” before the movies. Uh… books.

    America keeps undergoing “religious revivals” that take decades to dig out of. Some of them occurred before movies came along.

  5. Sean Maloney says

    Mike Ryan, why limit it to America? The world would be a much better place without organized religion. The biggest money-making scam ever to hit man, woman and child.

  6. peterparker says

    Another film in which censorship of movies plays a key part of the narrative is the Italian film ‘Cinema Paradiso’, released in the US in 1990. I highly recommend it, but get out your handkerchiefs…it’s a tearjerker!

  7. BrokebackBob says

    The basic problem with organized religion is allowing the various churches to have influence — outside — their church that influences the freedoms of people that NOT members of that church. If we would criminalize that type of influence, I think that might be a baby step.

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