First video games, now movies? Really, Australia? Have you lost your mind? Oh, wait, you mean you didn't really ban the games? You're just banning them without actually banning them? Allow me to reiterate, have you lost your minds!? How much more are the ex-cons of the UK going to take before they overthrow the government with a coupe whose morales represent lessons learned from the things banned?
Turns out, leaving it at Left4Dead Lite, Modern Warfare 2 and the flip-flop decision on Alien vs Predators just wasn't enough. Oh no, now they're going as far as to restrict the viewing on rated-R movies - essentially treating them just like pornography.
This new anti-freedom law will make it illegal to display R-rated movies alongside other movies. If the theater decides to, the cover of the movie must have no markings other than the name of the film and must have this really stupid label:
R 18+ FILMS AREA—THE PUBLIC ARE WARNED THAT MATERIAL DISPLAYED IN THIS AREA MAY CAUSE OFFENCE.
For theaters, this means no trailers can be shown. No posters or advertisements are allowed, either. But this isn't only for movie theaters. This applies to places like Blockbuster, who must now redesign their stores to accommodate. The movies cannot be placed next to PG-13 movies and basically must be put next to the porn in the hidden back room behind the curtain. What if you break the law and decide to display them anyway? The police now have “new powers of entry, seizure and forfeiture” to take care of the problem.
However, maybe this isn't so bad. Down under, the R-rating is like the NC-17 rating here in the States. The movie The Hangover gets an MA15+ down there, which is the next rating up from R. So their R is kind of in between our R and NC-17.
Regardless, our NC-17 isn't even as restricted as this new law. We can show them and sell them; it's just that most theaters choose not to. At least we still have the choice. Australia has taken a turn down Crazy Lane by passing these censorship laws and not even calling them censorship! This is a full-blown ban on R movies. Think about it: yes, they can still show the movie, but if they're not allowed to advertise that they're playing it or show any anything about the movie, who the hell would waste millions of dollars to get the film into their theater?
I would have let this pass as maybe they are going through a civil revolution of sorts, but after the three previous stories regarding their censorship, I couldn't let this one slide. Opinions? Comment! We promise that we value and want to hear everything you say.