How do we know Singapore’s film censors are not perverts?

Posted on 21 April 2012

Media Development Authority needs to clarify why they are not perverts to re-instate public’s good faith in them.

The critically-acclaimed British movie Shame, which is about sex addiction and released last year to rave reviews, will not be screening in Singapore.

This is because the Media Development Authority’s Board of Film Censors gave it a R21 rating and wanted to cut a group sex scene, but the movie’s director refused as he didn’t want any alterations to be made to his work just so it can please the sensibilities of a bunch of red-tape bureaucrats.

Despite an appeal, MDA made it clear it will not let the movie pass without a cut.

So, distribution plans for the movie here have since been canned.

Apparently, the censors, who wield sharp scissors, refused to let the public-at-large watch a “prolonged and explicit threesome sex sequence” after they themselves watched it.

How hypocritical.

In a statement, an unnamed (and red-faced) MDA spokesman said: “After consulting the Films Consultative Panel on the film Shame, we are of the view that the prolonged and explicit threesome sex sequence has exceeded our classification guidelines.”

That means, in technocratic speak, not only did the censorship board watch the sexually explicit footage together in the confines of their cosy viewing room, (while eating popcorn, perhaps), they sat around later fantasising, I mean erm… talking about it, such as its pros and cons.

As if any further clarifications might help, the anonymous MDA spokesman also said that “for titles that may be controversial, MDA will consult the Films Consultative Panel, which comprises members from various professions, age groups and races in Singapore, to seek community views prior to making a decision.”

This means that people of certain privilege will get to watch censored material before everyone else does.

And this is the part that is troubling.

Pray, tell: How do we, the public-at-large, know for a fact and with certainty that none of the people inside the Films Consultative Panel are in fact perverts?

How do we know for sure they didn’t manoeuvre their way to get into the Panel just so that they can watch sexually explicit movies (without paying) that will leave most moist or swollen?

Recently, a lot of men of high standing were figuratively caught with their pants down for patronising a prostitute.

And no one thunk this sort of thing could have happened.

So how do we remain convinced there are no perverts residing in the MDA’s midst?


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Wang Pei can be considered a new citizen of Singapore. She has been here all her life, just that her environment's changed beyond recognition.

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