Thursday, December 9, 2010
LA Zombie's Post-Coital Raid
The home of Richard Wolstencroft, the director of MUFF (the Melbourne Underground Film Festival), was raided by police recently. Targeted was Wolstencroft's screener of LA Zombie, an audacious zombie pic from festival favorite Bruce LaBruce; the filmmaker's The Raspberry Reich was screened by MUFF several years ago. Yours truly even met the visiting filmmaker.
A couple of months ago, Wolstencroft opted to screen LA Zombie after it was banned by the Australia censorship gestapo. His "secret" protest screening did not attract the constabulary at the time. The tardy, post-coital timing of the raid several months later did, however, coincide with a pending election in the state of Victoria. Funny about that.
Unfortunately, I'm not surprised that Mr. Wolstencroft got raided.
It's neither here nor there that he in particular was targeted, but the thinking behind the raid is easy to understand because I've lived on and off in Australia for some time. Where arts is concerned, Australia has a country town mentality. The divide between the government (the censors) and purveyors of art in that country is massive. It's an abyss, in fact.
Essentially, it's a symptom of gross cultural immaturity mixed with small town outrage. Blend that with government's too close relationship to the funding of the arts, and you get an arts culture that is, to put it politely, intrinsically fucked.
LaBruce's zombie pic was not screened by the larger Melbourne International Film Festival because of the banning. Brave soul Wolstencroft decided to challenge the ban with his protest screening.
It sucks oversized elephant dicks that feature films can even be banned in a country that prides itself on salt of the Earth freedom. It's a damn fucking shame of the highest order because, as far as everything else goes, Australia is the greatest country to live in in the world. It's also the best place to be when you're feeling under the weather, a great place to get a job (the economy is booming!), the locations (for filmmakers) are mouth watering, and the country's women are beautiful and eminently lickable. Australia even has a female Prime Minister (licking optional).
The colony's main problem is the lingering Old Englishness of its draconian censorship system. It has a pervasive nanny quality, a belief that decisions related to what you can and can't see or read are best left to those greater (and less corruptible) than you. The system is also dishonest and inconsistent in its decisions (Antichrist, which also features hardcore fucking, was passed uncut, while LA Zombie was "Refused Registration" (banned) . On top of that, the censors call themselves a "classification" board. Well, if they only classified films, that would be accurate, but they ban films, books, games, and magazines also. That's censorship. Even a dumb cunt with a broken abacus knows that.
This maintenance of hundred year old prudishness hovers around the country's exhibition and art business like the wet fart of Maggie Thatcher. You only have to look at some of the old white fucks running the board to understand that it really is time for them to fuck off and die and make room for a system that simply classifies movies. And I'm not just talking movies or videos of "merit", either. I'm talking about anything at all. If it's legally made, it should be available (that includes sex mixed with violence, too, Freedom Lovers!).
Making a mockery of the thinking behind the raid on Mr. Wolstencroft (the director of the Melbourne Underground Film Festival) is the availability of pretty much anything and everything on the internet these days. Still, a public screening is a different fish. That's why festivals exist.
Personally, I don't blame the police for the raid. They were only doing what some pathetic little dweeb in government asked them to do. Clearly, someone got a nice little stiffy intimidating a little guy while hiding behind the Queen's petticoats. I hope they enjoyed their little power orgasm.
In parts of the US, censorship is enforced on a local basis, so the problem operates under another cloak there. Canada censors pornography it deems "dangerous", and England, though far more liberal than it once was, still snips and cuts what it finds offensive.
For as long as there are micro-dicked human beings there will be censorship. It's a tempting passer of time for the weak and insecure, and it's the easiest and laziest way for them to curry favor with society's dumb and ignorant. That's why our politicians practice it with such unbridled passion.
Message to censors: It's a fucking zombie movie for Chrissakes. Grow up and give yourselves a blowjob!