video nasties

  • The arrival of videos in the UK, ‘Video Nasties’, and the video recordings act. 1984.
  • video recorders were introduced in the UK in 1978.
  • They were highly expensive (£700 for the player, £50 per tape).
  • There was no legislation on who could buy these tapes meaning children could buy X rated films.
  • Cinemas took the hit as more people were just renting the tapes rather than going cinema as cinema was pricey.
  • Big distributors didn’t publish their films to video tape until later than before and made them more expensive to prevent tape shops taking away cinema revenue.
  • Tape dealers could only afford horrors and porn as a result- smaller independent directors productions.
  • BBFC had no power over the ratings for home videos meaning that tapes that had been cut by the BBFC, rejected by the BBFC and never even shown to the BBFC could be published to video tape meaning obscene stuff.
  • The upper classes though if the lower classes would see these films they would become degenerates and revolt but as they were wealthy and educated they thought themselves immune from it.
  • Some police and authority believed that there was real life murder in the films.
  • Parliament wanting to pass bills to ban the films and make them illegal.
  • the video recordings act was never presented to the European commission meaning that the act was never passed. this means people were wrongly charged.
  • UK Gov re-passed the act to fix this years later.
  • PRO Ban – Graham  Bright, Mary Whitehouse – the festival of light (Christian group that evolved into a pressure group), John Bayer (Media Watch
  • 1985, the board shed its title of censors in favour of classifications to reflect this new role

The bbfc and the video nastiest continued:

James Ferman

  • Sectary for the bbfc- took over the bbfc
  • Probably the most controversial Director of the British Board of Film Classification
  • showed politictions uncut scenes, not the whole film


Hungerford Massacre 1987

  •  A man has shot 14 people dead in the Berkshire town of Hungerford.
  • Influences film making
  • rambo- bandana


Home viewing

  • cant control who watches it
  • You can skip to a film, re play scenes
  • People agrue that it makes the violence away from the scene because you can see the elements
  • video is cut wheres in cinema it isnt

Sex and violence

  • censorship for adults
  • drug use or one use of the word fuck it was automaticaly a 15 rating
  • rape is violence
  • the rape shouldnt be erotic or endorsed
  • New york ripper- not allowed to be printed in the uk
  • i spit on a grave is shown to new examiners
  • Weapons- nunchucks, throwing stars- cut teenage muntant ninja turtlse
  • chainsaws frilms were cut
  • you cant have a hero who smokes or it will be cut


James Bulger killing 1993 and the moral panic that followed.

  • childs play 3
  • 1991 horror movie is notorious for its links to the 1993 murder of three year old Jamie Bulger, in Liverpool, England. The 10 year old killers, Jon Venables and Robert Thompson, supposedly saw the film, and imitated a scene where a victim is splashed with blue paint.
  • There was a lot of mention of the links between the film and the crime in the UK press at the time, and a moral panic ensued.
  • The case against the film, though never really proven, led to new legislation, The Amendment to the Video Recordings Act, contained in the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act (1994)
  • no conclusive evidence that watching viloences makes you violence
  • there was no evidence that the children watched the film
  • mild content

A black market, people went to other coutries to get films.

James ferman was removed from board in 1998 because japanesse films were passed. 1999 all the band films became avalible, after that people didnt get influnced by films.


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