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Video Nasties: Moral Panic, Censorship & Videotape
72 films that changed Britain forever.
A documentary analyzing the furore which so-called "video nasties" caused in Britain during the 1980s.
"I believe research is taking place and it will show that these films not only affect young people, but they affect dogs as well."
Graham Bright MP
To avoid fainting, keep repeating:
They're only politicians
A superb and brilliantly edited documentary about the early 1980s video nasties "panic" which is admirably only concerned with one, less-frequently discussed, aspect: the legal side, which resulted in retailers being arrested and the BBFC taking on a huge new role. The usual suspects crop up as talking heads - Kim Newman, Geoffrey Robertson QC, Allan Bryce - but most significant are the interviews with hateful former MP Graham Bright, who still believes that he was doing the right thing, and Martin Barker, the media studies professor who's as passionate and pissed off as he ever was about the whole ridiculous affair.
Quite simply one of the very best documentaries about films that I have seen, and in so many ways, too.
It's by no means a balanced documentary - it is largely a polemic piece that casts deserved derision on people such as Mary Whitehouse and former MP Graham Bright, two of the main driving forces behind the Video Recordings Act of 1984. But it IS one that does affors Bright the opportunity to have his say and even, frustratingly, falls short of questioning him further regarding his proven lies about his purported research at the time.
But balance isn't really supposed to be the point of Jake West's eye-opening documentary anyway. It is more of retelling of one of the…
Essential for any film obsessive like myself. Jake West's beloved documentary is tirelessly informative with great interviews and archive footage that lays bare the preposterousness of the DPP's "video nasty" list and the 1984 Video Recording Act which ignited hysteria through the veins of working class society, the media, and politicians in Britain during the 80's.
Nostalgic, relevant, and satisfyingly enjoyable. Take note though, to fully appreciate the documentary you MUST purchase it as part of the 3-disc extravaganza, Video Nasties: The Definitive Guide. A 13 and a half hour journey through the entire 72 films that appeared on the notorious list added with their original trailers and introductions from the like of Kim Newman and Neil Marshall.
It will consume your social life but it's ever so worth it.
England in the 80s. Unemployment, riots, social unrest; the government needed a scapegoat. Enter the newly burgeoning home video market, people can now access and watch movies from the comfort of their homes, including the weird and wonderful world of low budget horror films with such attention- grabbing titles as The Driller Killer and I Spit on your Grave. Pretty soon these (let's be honest, mostly shit) films were being blamed for all manner of atrocities both present and future. Right wing nuts and The Daily Mail gathered their torches and pitchforks and declared that this filth be banned, which it eventually was and people went to prison just for stocking the films in their shops. This documentary covers all…
The people vs. Video Nasties!!!
Grata sorpresa ha sido este documental (rodado, editado y dirigido por Jake West) con la historia de los videocasetes "nasties" y toda la histeria colectiva que desató su prohibición en el Reino Unido (desde finales de los 70s y hasta inicio de los 90s).
La lista que se comenta llegó a 72 títulos obligó a las autoridades censoras a iniciar una persecución a los video-clubes. Aquí comenzó el caos, puesto que al tratarse de un tema inédito se hizo difícil de manejar métodos y puntualizar clasificaciones. El procedimiento logró dibujar a la ley como un ente inquisidor y las incautaciones eran arbitrarias.
Esto es material ESENCIAL para todos los fans de terror. Sin preocuparse por…
A great documentary about England's attempt to band violent horror films. Following a moral campaign led by Mary Whitehouse and the NVALA certain films were reviewed by the "BBFC" and deemed as obscene. The list of films under investigation...or to be prosecuted were dubbed "Video nasties". There were many arguments about the effect horror films, or incredibly violent films could or would have on the youth, due mainly to how easily accessible they were. There was a strong belief that these movies could have a disturbing impact, or turn ordinary people into vicious violent killers. There were many real life crimes that were actually linked to certain pictures. Any video store or retailer found selling or renting these videos could…
Director Jake West assembles an impressive slate of talking heads, from filmmakers like Neil Marshall (director of The Descent) and Christopher Smith (director of Triangle), horror journalists and scholars like Kim Newman and Patricia MacCormack, to actual players in the "video nasties" debate, like leading pitchfork-wielder MP Graham Bright and sanity advocate Martin Barker. They recount the the hysteria in pretty good detail. It's a serviceable tour from worthy guides, but it also lacks the style or distinctive point-of-view that separates fine documentaries from great ones. There are times when it seems like West (or whomever was performing the interviews) could've asked more pointed questions and followed up on a few tasty tidbits that are otherwise thrown away, such as…
Decent enough, I guess, but I was hoping for either a clip-show deep-dive into the actual list or an informed discussion of the issues of censorship and government overreach at the heart of the "video nasty" movement, not a half-assed mish-mash of the two approaches that I could've gotten via a few Google searches (b/w some silly directorial flourishes & a useless interlude involving a fake anti-video-nasty PSA). & not even one interview -- archival or otherwise -- with anyone involved with the MAKING of any of these films?
(NB: I ended up watching this because I was having severe buffering issues with other films on Fandor, including The Driller Killer.)
Interesante si no se conoce la historia. Si sí, bueh.
Just love it!
A DOCUMENTARY WITH A TON OF STATIONARY OLD ENGLISH DUDESSSSS
Pretty good. It's shot pretty ineptly, but I appreciate that it's mostly talking heads and clips from the news. I did quite like that the documentary puts the Video Nasties stuff in a wider social and political context than simply "Torys are pro-censorship." Britain in the 1980s is an absolutely fascinating subject I can never get enough of, despite not living through it, nor ever being in the country. This doc was a pretty good introduction to that topic as well as a kind of "greatest hits" of the crazy shit in those films.
Decent. Could use a little more style and more perspectives.
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