British Films of the 1990s to 2010s

British movies that have been censored for more commercially friendly classifications.


The Krays

Directed by Peter Medak / 1990 / UK / IMDb

A 116-minute 35mm print of THE KRAYS received an R (Occasional graphic violence) in July and August 1990.

The violence was found to be:
Frequency: Infrequent
Explicitness/Intensity: Medium
Purpose: Gratuitous

In September, a 115-minute censored version dropped it to M (Occasional coarse language, Violence).

Violence and language were described as:
Frequency: Infrequent
Explicitness/Intensity: Medium
Purpose: Justified

Palace Entertainment Corporation released the modified print theatrically.

VHS & DVD

In early 1991, Palace Entertainment issued an M-rated rental VHS featuring a ‘blood pack’ on the cover.

The Krays (1990) - VHS videotape 1
VHS – Palace Entertainment

An second VHS appeared in early 1993, with Palace promoting it as the ‘R Version never released before’.

Umbrella Entertainment issued an R-rated DVD in April 2012.

Possible cuts

Matt reports
The M-rated print may have trimmed some of these scenes.

33:30 – Sword attack in the snooker hall.
43:30 – The ‘Chelsea Smile’ where Ronnie (Gary Kemp) slowly cuts a man’s mouth.
108:00 – The stabbing of Jack the Hat (Tom Bell).

In April 1990, the British Board of Film Classification awarded THE KRAYS an 18 certificate after modifications to the ‘Chelsea smile’ scene. For unknown reasons, that ran 119:20 compared to Palace’s 116-minute R-rating.


My Cousin Rachel

Directed by Roger Michell / 2017 / UK – USA / IMDb

A 105-minute Digital Cinema Package (DCP) of MY COUSIN RACHEL passed with an M (Occasional coarse language) in May 2017.

The classification matrix described,
Moderate impact: language
Mild impact: themes, violence
Very mild impact: nudity, sex
None: drug use

It was followed on 5 June by another 105-minute DCP but lowered to PG (Mild themes, violence and occasional coarse language). The classification matrix noted the language as ‘mild impact’ rather than ‘moderate impact’.

My Cousin Rachel (2017) - Australian one sheet poster 1
One sheet

Three days later, Twentieth Century Fox Film Distributors opened the censored version theatrically.

Uncut at home

In July, a 254-minute ‘Home Entertainment Version’ received an M (Sex scene and coarse language).

The classification matrix described,
Moderate impact: language, sex
Mild impact: themes, violence
Very mild impact: nudity

The sex went from ‘very mild impact’ to ‘moderate impact’ with the addition of ‘sex scene’ to the consumer advice. The 106:08 running time also indicates the first submission was precut.

My Cousin Rachel (2017) - Blu-ray cover 1
Blu-ray – 20th Century Fox

Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment released the uncut DVD and Blu-ray in October 2017.

What was censored?

Aiming for a PG-rating, Twentieth Century Fox censored sex from the first submission. Their failure to remove the word ‘fucking resulted in a second submission.

The language cut would have modified this line.

My Cousin Rachel (2017) - Seecombe (Tim Barlow) says, 'Not like that, you fucking prick-wit!'.
Uncut – Audio

43:41 – Seecombe (Tim Barlow) says, ‘Not like that, you fucking prick-wit!’.

The sex would have trimmed this very mild 00:20 sequence.

My Cousin Rachel (2017) - Phillip (Sam Claflin) and Rachel (Rachel Weisz) have sex.
Sex scene

71:50 – Phillip (Sam Claflin) thrusts on top of Rachel (Rachel Weisz) as they have sex in the woods.