What can banning a film achieve in the Internet age?
A few weeks ago, the BBFC refused to give a certificate (warning, link contains graphic description of the film and why it was refused certification) to the second Human Centipede movie. This doesn’t happen very often, especially in this day and age
Now, I don’t understand why anyone would want to watch shit like that. But I’m not pro-censorship on the whole, and I find it hard to believe that banning a film does any good. Quite the opposite in fact.
The film industry learned — along, I assumed, with the BBFC — that banning movies doesn’t really work in the ’80s, with the video nasties debacle. People that want to see them can usually manage it, via imports or bootleg copies from overseas friends. With Europe on our doorstep, if a film is banned here, it’s likely to be available 45 minutes away by ferry or Eurostar.
But in the Internet age, can the BBFCs ban stop anyone from watching any film?
The answer, of course, is no.
Torrent sites will carry the next Human Centipede movie — likely to the chagrin of the director and studio — and anyone in the UK who wants to see it will have no problem so doing. And that means, more than likely, that kids will elevate it to cult status and trade it via USB sticks.
Although, as one blogger points out, anyone downloading a film like this, when it hasn’t been classified, could open themselves up to prosecution if anyone were to find out.
“possession of which[extreme porn] is a criminal offence, liable to punishment by means of a fine, community service or prison”
So what does banning the move really achieve?
On a separate note, I was upset to learn that the second film isn’t titled The Human Millipede as that would have been quite an astonishing picture.