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Re: [dvd-discuss] clean flicks and moral rights

It's true that much of the sex, violence, language, or nudity is gratuitious etc (YYYY) and can be eliminated without reducing the content. Also, I've seen several films where the gore has been eliminated on TV which actually made them better films than when I saw them in the theatre.  In many instances YYYY cannot (e.g., imagine a nonviolent "Terminator" [which is nothing but a killing machine]) butAt some point, one has to ask the question that "If YYYY offends you, then WHY do you want to watch a movie about YYYY that has all the YYYY deleted? Maybe you should just not even bother?"

"Arnold G. Reinhold" <reinhold@world.std.com>
Sent by: owner-dvd-discuss@eon.law.harvard.edu

01/23/2003 05:59 AM
Please respond to dvd-discuss

        To:        dvd-discuss@eon.law.harvard.edu
        Subject:        Re: [dvd-discuss] clean flicks and moral rights

At 12:49 AM -0500 1/23/03, Jeremy Erwin wrote:
>Could Gosford Park be released as a clean version? Yes, with minimal
>effect on the story-- eight "f**ks, as cheerfully pointed out on the
>accompanying commentary tracks .. Will such a clean edit be done?
>Probably not, as the Mormons would doubtless find fault with the
>suggestion of incest, homosexuality, heterosexuality, etc... and
>find ways to wipe out actual content.

It's not just people with strong religious views who are potential
buyers for cleaned up films. Parents are a big market. Hollywood
plays a really sick game with ratings.  Many, if not most, PG-13
films are filled with sexual content and crude humor, while R movies
have serious themes along with an occasional f-word  and 542
milliseconds of exposed nipple or crotch. Sans the gratuitous stuff
thrown in to get the magic rating, many R movies are more wholesome
for teens and even preteens than most PG-13 movies.

Consider, for examples, "Topsy Turvey" a film about Gilbert and
Sullivan with a gratuitous crotch shot, or "Men of Honor" an
inspiring film about the US Navy's first black diver, with a
particularly graphic use of the f-word (lots of n-words too but they
are central to the story).

>I suppose, that the alternative-- market confusion caused by a
>proliferation of "clean" versions is by far the worse scenario. I
>just hope that they won't be used in an educational setting.
>(My high school English textbook included a copy of Julius Caeser,
>minus, peculiarly, a good part of Act 1, Scene 3. A classroom is no
>place for Bowdler.)

Clear warning labels are the way to deal with market confusion.  And
even Mr. Valenti will agree that Shakespeare is in the public domain.

Garry Trudeau dealt with the moral-rights-in-movies argument quite
well in a strip published on December 28, 1986 (doonesbury.com has a
search engine!):


Arnold Reinhold