In 1991, Video Distribution Company had a VHS tape of CARTEL banned by the OFLC. In January 1992, a censored version was passed with an R18+ (Medium level violence) rating in January 1992. Both the cut and uncut versions were listed as running 105m. The actual running time of the video tape released on the Hollywood Studios label was 91:22.
Thanks to Simon for this review and screencaps.
CARTEL was banned because of a scene where a gang of thugs raid a house containing the hero’s sister, nephew, and girlfriend. There is only a brief moment of sexual violence, but several other scenes were also removed. The distributor probably over cut the action because he did not want to resubmit it a third time. Not including the Cobra Entertainment Group title card, the uncut version ran 94:00.
Before – Donna runs to the door with Tommy. She opens it, and screams.
CENSORED 29:58 to 30:18 – The lead thug at the door says "Hello Donna". Another thug grabs Tommy. Donna struggles and shouts "Tommy, run". The lead thug slaps her down to the couch; he wipes his face, and shuts the door.
After – Nancy screams.
Before - Nancy knocks one of the thugs off the bonnet of the car.
CENSORED 30:29 to 31:20 – Nancy is chased and pulled to the ground. It then cuts to Donna struggling. The lead thug says, "I like it when you fight". It then cuts back to Nancy on the floor fighting with the thug. He slaps her around the face. She grabs a knife, stabs him in the side, and escapes. She runs passed Donna and the lead thug.
After - Nancy runs into the bathroom with her top ripped open.
Before - Donna smashes a vase on the lead thugs head and escapes. He gets up and chases after her.
CENSORED 31:55 to 31:56 – Brief shot of Nancy’s dress being ripped as she escapes through the door.
After – Continuation of Nancy escaping through door.
Before – The lead thug shoots Donna in the back and says "Bitch".
CENSORED 32:19 to 32:29 – Donna lying by the pool. One of the thugs holds Tommy by his feet over her. She grabs his hand as he is dragged away. She says "No".
After – Thug plunges knife into the door where Nancy is hiding.
Before – The thug is told to kill Tommy.
CENSORED 34:10 to 34:54 – Nancy rushes forward, but is slapped down on to the bed. Tommy cries "Mommy as he is taken away. The door is closed and a gunshot is heard. The thug comes back into the room holding Tommy’s toy train. Nancy is hysterical as she is held down on the bed by two thugs.
After /Before– Donna is shown alive by the pool.
CENSORED 35:01 to 35:24 – Nancy is topless on the bed with the lead thug on top of her. He kisses her body, and she spits in his face. Angered, he shouts "Fucking whore".
Note, that this is the only censored scene that could really be considered as sexual violence.
After - The thugs walk over the body of Tommy who opens his eyes. He closes them and pretends to be dead. We now understand that the thug has only pretended to shoot him.
This film has never had problems with the Australian censors. It is included because the distributor chose to censor it to achieve a more commercial rating.
In April 1982, a 3151.34-meter (115.11) print of THE CHALLENGE was passed
with an R-rating. It was awarded for violence, which was described as being:
It appears that either Roadshow Distributors were seeking an M-rating or the film was recut by the studio, because in November 1982, a 2962.44-meter (108.17) 'reconstructed version' was submitted. Unfortunately, it was awarded an R-rating for the same reasons as the original submission.
Finally, in January 1983, a 'third reconstructed version' was passed with
an M-rating. The 2962.44-meter (108:17) running time was the same as the
previous submission. It was again awarded for violence, which was described
CBS Fox Video released THE CHALLENGE on tape in a version that ran 109:12 (NTSC). The cover incorrectly gave the film a recommended rating of 'NRC: Not Recommended for Children'.
Thanks to Matt for this information.
The CBS/Fox tape of John Frankenheimer's THE CHALLENGE runs 109:12 (NTSC), and appears to be uncut. It is interesting that this is six minutes shorter than the April 1982 submission. I would guess that footage was removed by the studio for pacing reasons, and not because of censorship, as I have yet to find any version that runs over 109m.
Fox Columbia first submitted CHRISTIANE F. in a 'German Language, English subtitled version' in March 1982. This 3589 meter (131:11) 35mm print was passed with an R-rating after cuts. The reason given for the deletions was 'Sexual Activity Involving a Minor'. It looks like the distributor was seeking an M-rating as an appeal was made to the Review Board. In March 1982, they confirmed the R-rating decision of the censors.
Fox Columbia submitted CHRISTIANE F. again in May 1982, and was again awarded an R-rating. The print ran 3456.18 meters (126:19), and this time was described as the 'pre-censor cut English dubbed version'. Still seeking the M-rating, they again appealed to the Review Board, who in June 1982 again confirmed the R-rating of the censors.
In July 1982, a third version was again rated R. This print ran 3520.30 meters (128:40) and was described as 'English Language pre-censor cut version no.2'. This time there was no appeal to the Review Board and the film was released. It looks like at this point Fox Columbia had accepted the fact that it was going to be an R-rated film. The cut footage seems to have been reinstated, as this submission was longer than the previous one.
Roadshow Home Video released CHRISTIANE F. on tape in 1983. It ran 123:09 (PAL) and was the horribly dubbed English Language version. It was approximately the same length as the 'English Language pre-censor cut version no.2'.
CHRISTIANE F. made its Australian DVD premiere in 2002 courtesy of Umbrella Entertainment. This was the German Language version and ran 125:46 (PAL).
In 1981, Hoyts Distribution pre-cut CITY OF THE LIVING DEAD before submission to the Censorship Board. This 2459.62-meter (89:54) print, described as a 'pre-censor cut version', was rated R in October 1981.
However, this was only after the removal of a further 9-meters (20s) of footage by the Censorship Board.
The reason for the deletion was violence, which was
Two censored videotapes were released in Australia. One in the early 80s on K&C Video (87:55), and the other in the mid-80s, under the title GATES OF HELL, on Infinity Video Sales (86:06).
The two most infamous gore scenes have definitely been censored from both tapes.
30m approx - The girl vomiting up her guts has been shortened, as has the scene of her boyfriend having his brain torn out.
55m approx - The scene of Bob having his head drilled has been removed.
There are very possibly more cuts that need to be documented.
The stills on the back of the Infinity Video Sales come from Camp Video's release of NIGHTMARE HOUSE (1969).
CITY OF THE LIVING DEAD made its Australian DVD debut in February 2005 courtesy of Siren Visual Entertainment. At 88:52, this version was fully uncut.
CLASS OF NUKE 'EM HIGH was banned by the Censorship Board in 1986. An appeal was made to the Review Board who cleared it with an R-rating.
Film Board of Review
8 January 1987
"The film presents a black comedy in the horror genre, based loosely on an accident at a nuclear plant and the cumulative contamination of a nearby high school, contributing to the breakdown of discipline, together with mutations and derangement experienced by various students. Mr Peter Sweeny attended before the screening, to put the case for appeal
The Film Board of Review noted the film's anti-social tone, its uninformed depiction of the consequences of nuclear contamination and its relative explicit, detailed and gratuitous violence. While these elements were given careful consideration, it was felt that the impact of the film's clearly artificial special effects was mitigated by its gross exaggeration and tone of black humour.
Accordingly, the Films Board of Review was unanimous in upholding the appeal, and in tits consideration that, since the content may be offensive to some sections of the community, the decision of the Censorship Board should be set aside and the film be classified "For Restricted Exhibition" ("R").
The Films Board of Review therefore directs the Film Censorship Board to register CLASS OF NUKE 'EM HIGH with a "For Restricted Exhibition" ("R") classification.
With the ban overturned, and an 83m tape print rated R, Virgin Video went ahead and released it on tape. Thanks to Stephen F. for the cover scan.
Two months later, Newvision Film Distributors had an 82m 35mm print banned. It is unclear why this happened considering that it had been cleared by the Review Board.
In October 2000, Tribe Enterprises received an RC-rating from the OFLC for a proposed DVD. The problem was not the film, but a DVD extra called THE TROMA INTELLIGENCE TEST.
In May 2005, a DVD version was reclassified R18+ (Medium Level Violence). This was released later in the month by Stomp Visual as part of their re-issue of the Troma back catalogue. On the back cover, the following was written:
"Troma Intelligence Test and Trailers are not available on the Australian version of Class of Nuke' Em High"
See our separate database entry for the TROMA INTELLIGENCE TEST for an explanation as to why it was dropped.
In September 2010, CLASS OF NUKE 'EM HIGH was re-released on DVD by Jigsaw Entertainment, through Gryphon Entertainment.
According to this review at Michael D's R4 DVD Info Page, the disc contains the TROMA INTELLIGENCE TEST.
Troma Interactivity: Although on the DVD cover and the menu, this feature which includes the Troma Intelligence Test and Tour of Troma Studios cannot be accessed from the menu. It is however on the DVD; use the remote to access the chapters.
In October 1972, a 2576.00-meter (93:54) print of CLAY PIGEON was banned because of 'indecency, excessive violence, and incitement to drug abuse'.
Warner Bros immediately appealed to the Films Board of Review. They passed it with an R-rating following the removal of 7.31-meters (00:16) of the 'incitement to drug abuse' footage.
In February 1972, a 9711-feet (108:11) print of THE COLD-BLOODED BEAST was banned because of 'indecency'.
In April 1972, Filmways Australasia unsuccessfully appealed to the Film Board of Review, and it remained banned in Australia.
Thanks to Simon for this information.
The Italian Raro Video DVD of THE COLD-BLOODED BEAST (aka SLAUGHTER HOTEL) runs 90:26. Despite being described as the longer European Cut, it is still incomplete. DVD Compare has a good examination of the various versions. Interestingly, none comes close to the 108m running time of the print that was banned here in 1972. Despite that, it would be hard to imagine the close up shots female masturbation shots (from the Raro Video DVD) being present in the version sent to our Censorship Board.
In the 80s and 90s, most Australian-Italian video stores seemed to have a copy of the film on their shelves. The Italian tape was released by Video Ciak under the original title LA BESTIA UCCIDE A SANGUE FREDDO.
In May 1985, Palace Video had a 79m videotape of COLOR ME BLOOD RED banned because of excessive violence. The planned release on the Palace Explosive label was abandoned.
At the same time, the Censorship Board did not consider BLOOD FEAST (1963) and 2000 MANIACS (1964) to be excessively violent and passed them with R-ratings. They both appeared on the Palace Explosive label. Quite why these were passed and COLOR ME BLOOD RED banned is quite a mystery. This is after all arguably the tamest and dullest of the blood trilogy.
Thanks to Stephen F for sending in a scan of the Palace Explosive's Catalogue of Horror, which promotes COLOR ME BLOOD RED as 'Coming Soon'.
Two months before the ban, scenes from COLOR ME BLOOD RED were shown in the TERROR ON TAPE (1983) compilation. This was banned by the Censorship Board in March 1985. Clips from two scenes were shown, the girl killed by a knife in the head, and the dead woman tied up with her guts hanging out.
A DVD of COLOR ME BLOOD RED was finally passed R18+ (Medium Level Violence) in February 2005. The applicant was Siren Visual Entertainment who gave the film a belated Australian premiere soon after. A few days later the OFLC showed how little they had really changed when they reconfirmed a ban on H.G. Lewis's final film, THE GORE GORE GIRLS (1972).
In October 1986, an 'edited version' of COMBAT SHOCK was passed with an R-rating. It was awarded for:
In November 1986, Delta Home Video had a 100m version banned because of
violence, which was described as being:
Delta released two different prints of COMBAT SHOCK on tape. One was censored, and ran 93:40. This was the 'edited version' that had been passed with an R-rating in October 1986.
The other was a longer 95:13 version that included the violence that had previously been removed. It is unclear how this tape came to be released as it does not appear to have ever been rated by the Censorship Board. To add to the confusion, both tapes have exactly the same covers, and list a 105m running time on their spine.
In March 2011, COMBAT SHOCK was released on DVD by Jigsaw Entertainment, through Gryphon Entertainment. It was described as a '2-Disc Uncut 25th Anniversary Edition'. It includes the 91:39 (NTSC) Theatrical Cut.
Thanks to Simon for this information.
I compared the end of Delta Video’s censored 93:40 VHS to the 91:39 Theatrical Cut which was released locally on DVD by Jigsaw Entertainment.
Beginning at 86:18 in the Theatrical Cut, Delta’s VHS is missing:
Kathy lying on the floor gurgling blood from her mouth.
Frankie shooting his mutant baby, and a shot of it coughing up blood.
Frankie walking into the kitchen, standing over a pool of blood on the floor, and then bending down to put his baby in the oven.
Frankie looking over to see blood coming from the oven.
Blood pumping from Frankie’s head wound after he has shot himself.
Apart from the blood seeping from the oven footage, all these scenes are in the Theatrical cut. Movie-Censorship has a comparison between this and the longer 96:44 Director’s Cut.
Delta’s version is preceded by the Troma Team intro. You state that their uncut version ran 95:13, which indicates that Australia received a different version to both the Director's Cut, and the Theatrical Cut.
In March 1973, a 2100.60-meter (76:34) print of COME BACK PETER was censored by 3.7-meters (00:08) for an R-rating. The cuts were made to remove 'indecency'.
MGM/BEF Film Distributors were the applicant.
In May 1983, a 76m tape (under the title SOME LIKE IT SEXY) was banned
because of sex, which was described as being:
Video Classics resubmitted the 76m tape in August 1985, and received an X18+. This time the rating was awarded for exactly the same reasons that saw it banned in 1983.
A second 76m tape was passed with an R-rating in November 1985. The sex
was now described as being
This indicates that despite having the same running time, this R-rated version may have been censored.
It does not appear that Video Classics released R or X-rated tapes of SOME LIKE IT SEXY as they were in financial difficulties during 1985. The November 1985 application was done by Arthur Andersen Chartered Accountants who were appointed after the company went into administration.
Thanks to Matt for this review.
Donovan Winter returned several years after the release of COME BACK PETER and spiced up the sex scenes for an early 70s audience. This new version was known as SOME LIKE IT SEXY. This goes some way to explaining how the Australian Censorship Board has treated the film over the years.
For its Australian theatrical release, it was cut by eight seconds. It is impossible to guess what was removed, as the original COME BACK PETER version does not appear to be available anywhere.
It is easy to spot the extra scenes that were shot for SOME LIKE IT SEXY. Hairstyles change, and the back of Peter’s body mysteriously grows hairy every time a more explicit scene appears. Most of the film is strictly soft-core, however the 'continental version' contains a 15 second shot of Peter’s semi-erection as Cleo, the black singer, guides him inside her. It was probably this scene that caused the May 1983 ban, and subsequent X18+ rating. It would definitely have had to be removed for the R-rated version.
In the UK, Nucleus Pictures released the uncut 'continental version' on DVD in 2012. It runs 78:00, and the aforementioned explicit scene appears at approximately 53m.
Image courtesy of moviemem.com
In May 1984, a 1064.09-meter (96:58) print of COMING OF AGE was censored by 2-meters (00:11) for an R-rating.
Before the cuts, the sex was described as being:
In the censored R-rated version, the sex was found to be:
Stagedoor Productions was the applicant.
In August 1984, a 98m videotape of COMING OF AGE was passed with an R-rating for the same reasons.
The tape was releases by Stage Door Video.
COMMUNITY ACTION CENTER was programmed to screen on February 22, at Sydney's 2012 Mardi Gras Film Festival.
The Red Rattler Theatre
6 Faversham St. Marrickville NSW 2204
Wed Feb 22 2012, 7.30pm
A special event screening of Community Action Centre for The Mardi Gras Film Festival presented by Queer Screen and The Red Rattler.
Community Action Center (A.K. Burns + A.L. Steiner, 2010, TRT 69 mins.) is a sociosexual video which incorporates the erotics of a community where the personal is not only political, but sexual. This project was heavily inspired by 1970’s porn-romance-liberation films which served as distinct portraits of the urban inhabitants, landscapes and the body politic of a particular time and place. Community Action Center is a unique contemporary womyn-centric composition that serves as both an ode and a hole-filler. Sex, sexuality and the complexities of gendered bodies are inherently political. This project is a small archive of an intergenerational community built on collaboration, friendship, sex and art.
The work attempts to explore a consideration of feminist fashion, sexual aesthetics and an expansive view of what is defined as ‘sex’. Burns and Steiner worked with artists and performers who created infinitely complex gender and performance roles that are both real and fantastical, set to a soundtrack of music culled from the worldwide sisterhood: Chicks on Speed, Effi Briest, Electrelane, K8 Hardy, Lesbians on Ecstasy, Light Asylum, MEN, Motherland, NGUZUNGUZU, I.U.D. (Lizzi Bougatsos & Sadie Laska), Kinski and Thee Majesty (Genesis P-Orridge), and featuring original compositions by Justin Bond, Nick Hallett & Sam Greenleaf Miller, Ashland Mines & Wu Tsang, Sergei Tcherepnin and Tri-State Area.
The video seeks to expose and reformulate paradigms that are typical of porn typologies, intentionally exploiting tropes for their comical value, critical consideration and historical homage. The artists have created a reason to reflect on the cultural realness of homo-grown lesbian sexuality. The work aims to be a hedonistic and distinctly political adventure.
Contains sexually explicit content
The film was submitted to the Classification Board who concluded that COMMUNITY ACTION CENTER (2010), along with IN THEIR ROOM: BERLIN (2011) would most likely be classified X if they were rated. The Mardi Gras Film Festival decided not to screen either film.
Community Action Centre
This film has been refused an exemption from classification from the Australian Classification Board. As such, we will not be screening the work. You can read more about the cancellation of this screening here.
The full story behind this case can be found at the IN THEIR ROOM: BERLIN (2011) page.
In October 1973, a 2240-meter (81:39) 'reconstructed version' of COMMUTER HUSBANDS was censored by a further 108.34-meters (03:57) for an R-rating. The cuts were made to remove 'indecency'.
Roadshow Distributors released the film theatrically.
In December 1984, Palace Home Video had an 83:20 tape passed with an
R-rating. It was awarded for sex, which was labelled as:
The tape was released as part of their Vibrant Video range.
Thanks to Simon for this information.
In 1973, the censor would have definitely targeted second story, which contains the most graphic footage. It takes place when the plumber stops and watches a couple having sex in bed (18:30), and again when it becomes a threesome (23:45).
The third story has some sex scenes with the bikers (30m), and the fourth has Arnold spying on a neighbouring couple having sex (35m).
The remaining three of the six stories in COMMUTER HUSBANDS contain little, if any sex.
The Palace Vibrant Video tape appears to be uncut, and runs 83:20 (PAL).
In July 1977, a 2311.00-meter (84:28) print of THE EVOLUTION OF SNUFF was passed with an R-rating. Roadshow Distributors released it theatrically.
In November 1978, the Censorship Board noted that the title has been changed to CONFESSIONS OF A BLUE MOVIE STAR… THE EVOLUTION OF SNUFF
In January 1984, the 90m Italian Torino Video release was banned because of
sex, which was described as being:
The Italian title of the video tape was CIVILTA DEL VIZIO. If the 90m running time was correct, then it must contain footage not found in other releases. Thanks to Steve for the cover scan.
In the mid 90s, a local video distributor began importing U.K. prints of films, packaging them as adult titles, and releasing them with fake R-ratings. These were put out on labels such as Blue Climax, Private and Colour Climax (see also WEREWOLF WOMAN). All were very tame affairs; cut by the British censors, with some still having the BBFC 18-ratings before the movie.
CONFESSIONS OF A BLUE MOVIE STAR was one such title, put out on the Private label and running 71:27. Compare this with the 79:08 running time of the early 80s UK Intervision tape, and you can see how much footage (including all of THE LAST HOUSE ON THE LEFT clips) was missing.
In 1994, Eagle Entertainment had an 89m VHS of CONFESSIONS OF A SERIAL KILLER Refused Classification. It was censored down to 87m and awarded an R18+ (High Level Violence) rating in April 1994. This cut version was released on tape by Eagle Entertainment and ran 87:11. Although the film was undoubtedly censored, it is not obvious from which scenes footage had been removed.
Another film that dealt with the story of Henry Lee Lucas was HENRY: PORTRAIT OF A SERIAL KILLER, a title that also had Australian censorship problems in the early-90s.
In September 1977, a 2260.00-meter (82:22) print of CONFESSIONS OF A YOUNG AMERICAN HOUSEWIFE was banned because of 'indecency'. A reduced 1810.00-meter (65:08) version lost a further 42.4-meter (01:33) before being awarded an R-rating in June 1978.
Natan Scheinwald Productions was the applicant.
In the early 80s, K&C Video released CONFESSIONS OF A YOUNG AMERICAN HOUSEWIFE on their Starbase Video label.