Film and television Blood and cuts
Unusually, some Chinese want more censorship
A FLYING dagger stabs a Japanese soldier in theheart. Another fighter has his neck slit by a Chinesesecret agent. Others are shot at close range,gassed or drowned. Like war dramas everywhere, “Royalty in Blood”, a 36-part television seriesabout the war between China and Japan from 1937-45, is pretty gory. Yet unlike elsewhere, theon-screen violence is not just for adult viewers. It is aired each week at 7.35pm, the mostpopular television-watching hour, when even very young children in China have yet to go tobed.
All films and TV shows are vetted by a government committee. Oddly, however, China has noratings system to denote a film’s suitability for certain age-groups. It has no TV “watershed”either, as many countries do, dividing the day into family-oriented programming and late-nightviewing with more adult content. Violent TV dramas are sometimes shown on public transport.Ticket sales at cinemas increased nearly 50% in the first 11 months of 2015 on the previousyear to reach $6.3 billion, a total surpassed only by America. Yet questions are often raisedabout whether films are safe and appropriate for children, who can watch any of them.
The government does not want ratings or a watershed because it does not want to be seen tobe permitting sex and violence for anyone. Its constraints on what may appear on screenrepresent a laundry list of the state’s anxieties. Content must not “endanger” China’s unity,security or honour. It also should not “twist” history, feature explicit sex or gambling,advocate “the supremacy of religion” or “meticulously describe fortune-telling”. Playing upviolence is prohibited, in theory.
But to attract adult audiences, makers of film and TV entertainment often like to push theboundaries of what the Communist Party regards as good taste. And even the prudishstandards of the censors are sometimes flexible enough to allow content that might shockchildren, who are just as impressionable in China as anywhere else. In apparent response todemand from anxious parents, a handful of cinemas in the far western province of Xinjiangintroduced their own unofficial ratings in 2014.
Censors’ shockability has varied over time. The first Communist-era on-screen kiss was a peckon the cheek in “Romance on Lushan Mountain” in 1980, the year that Richard Gere appearednaked in “American Gigolo”, among the first Hollywood films to feature full-frontal male nudity.China has relaxed a bit since: for a while, one film fan had a blog called “Research Centre forNipples in Chinese Films”.
However, prudishness has revived in recent years. The nude scene in “Titanic”, a Hollywoodfilm, was screened intact in China in 1998, for example, but removed from the 3D versionreleased in 2012. Heaving bosoms have been blacklisted too: in the past year two popular TVdramas have been forced to re-edit shots that include plunging necklines and to zoom in on theactresses’ faces instead (movies involving such filming techniques are referred to scathingly as“big-head” ones). Online streaming sites, which previously had often succeeded in escaping thecensors’ attention, are coming under closer scrutiny.
Moral strictures are not applied equally. Regulators warn against “displaying excessive drinking,smoking and other bad habits”, for example, yet smoking is routine on Chinese screens. Oneblockbuster released in 2015, “Gone with the Bullets”, had to delay its premiere, probablybecause it had to adjust some of its sexually suggestive content. But it featured 45 smokingscenes—around one every three minutes.
Tolerance for violence is higher than it is for sex, perhaps because so much of what passes forentertainment on TV and in cinemas is in fact propaganda relating to the war against theJapanese and the party’s bloody rise to power. Such historical gore is mostly given a clean pass(although some anti-Japanese war shows were reined in for being “overly dramatic” in 2013). AChinese film released in 2006, “Curse of the Golden Flower”, was given a rating in America thatrequired those under 17 to be accompanied by an adult because of its violent scenes (one ispictured). But these scenes were left uncut when it was screened in China. Viewers were givenno warning about them. On TV “The Patriot” (Yue Fei), a popular historical drama, commonlyfeatures long fights with bloody swords, arrows through the heart and dripping corpses. Itcurrently airs on one channel in the early afternoon (others show it at 7.35pm).
Censors more often pounce if the context is not related to China’s military heroism. AJapanese anime film, “Attack on Titan”, was pulled from the Shanghai film festival in June,probably because of its violent content. A children’s cartoon, “Pleasant Goat and the Big, BigWolf”, a Chinese “Tom and Jerry”, was criticised by state media in 2013 for its “vulgar”language and violent images; they said that the wolf was assaulted with a frying pan over9,500 times in his attempt to bring a sheep home for his wife to cook. There were no apparentobjections to the gender stereotypes.
China has relaxed a bit since: for a while, one filmfan had a blog called Research Centre for Nipples inChinese Films.
However, prudishness has revived in recent years.
The nude scene in Titanic, a Hollywood film, was screened intact in China in 1998, for example,but removed from the 3D version released in 2012.
Heaving bosoms have been blacklisted too:
in the past year two popular TV dramas have been forced to re-edit shots that includeplunging necklines and to zoom in on the actresses’ faces instead (movies involving such filmingtechniques are referred to scathingly as big-head ones).
Online streaming sites, which previously had often succeeded in escaping the censors’attention, are coming under closer scrutiny.
Moral strictures are not applied equally.
Regulators warn against displaying excessive drinking, smoking and other bad habits, forexample, yet smoking is routine on Chinese screens.
One blockbuster released in 2015, Gone with the Bullets, had to delay its premiere, probablybecause it had to adjust some of its sexually suggestive content.
But it featured 45 smoking scenes—around one every three minutes.
Tolerance for violence is higher than it is for sex, perhaps because so much of what passes forentertainment on TV and in cinemas is in fact propaganda relating to the war against theJapanese and the party’s bloody rise to power.
Such historical gore is mostly given a clean pass (although some anti-Japanese war shows werereined in for being overly dramatic in 2013).
A Chinese film released in 2006, Curse of the Golden Flower, was given a rating in America thatrequired those under 17 to be accompanied by an adult because of its violent scenes.
But these scenes were left uncut when it was screened in China. Viewers were given no warningabout them.
On TV The Patriot (Yue Fei), a popular historical drama, commonly features long fights withbloody swords, arrows through the heart and dripping corpses.
It currently airs on one channel in the early afternoon (others show it at 7.35pm).
Censors more often pounce if the context is not related to China’s military heroism.
A Japanese anime film, Attack on Titan, was pulled from the Shanghai film festival in June,probably because of its violent content.
A children’s cartoon, Pleasant Goat and the Big, Big Wolf, a Chinese Tom and Jerry, wascriticised by state media in 2013 for its vulgar language and violent images;
they said that the wolf was assaulted with a frying pan over 9,500 times in his attempt to bringa sheep home for his wife to cook.
There were no apparent objections to the gender stereotypes.
1.secret agent 特工人员，特务
例句:You got to think like a secret agent.
2.public transport 公共交通
例句:The new museum must be accessible by publictransport.
3.appropriate for 适当的
例句:If you’re running Linux, simply install the development packages using the packagemanager appropriate for your distribution.
4.allow to 允许
例句:The wallets allow users to buy and sell bitcoins as well as spend them.