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Film Classification in Ireland

  • 07-07-2019 8:55am
    Closed Accounts Posts: 62 ✭✭✭ Small Wonder

    I've just noticed that Midsommar was rated 16 in Ireland and 18 in the UK. Does that happen regularly?

    I'd like to look a bit more into classification in Ireland. I've just read Behind the Scenes at the BBFC: Film Classification from the Silver Screen to the Digital Age, published by the BFI and I found it very interesting. Are there any similar works with an Irish focus? A quick Google search hasn't thrown up anything.



  • Closed Accounts Posts: 40,086 ✭✭✭✭ Harry Palmr

    There's been a number of examples of this but don't ask me to name a specific title! But far more, historically of a 15 in the UK being an 18 here of course ("boobies ooh!").

    Just to say - there is a history of censorship in Ireland. I've got a copy, and it's VERY DRY. I'll see if I can find it and pick out an example. (the book is by Kevin Rockett)

    Found an example (obvious one thinking about it) the Passion of the Christ. 15 here, 18 UK

  • Registered Users Posts: 10,253 ✭✭✭✭ branie2

    Michael Collins was, controversially, given a PG rating, as far as I remember

  • Closed Accounts Posts: 29,933 ✭✭✭✭ TerrorFirmer

    It was very conservative until John Kelleher was appointed in 2003 or 2004. It wasn't unusual to have certain films rated 12's in the UK but 18's in Ireland, not always due to graphic content, sometimes just thematic reasoning.

    Cider House Rules from 1999 for example was 12's in the UK but 18's in Ireland because abortion was a central theme.

    Even just in terms of violence and/or nudity, it was almost a given that a 15's rating in the UK would be an 18's in Ireland.

    Pretty rare these days to get actual 18's movies in Ireland, almost everything is 16 rated.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,571 ✭✭✭ vriesmays

    branie2 wrote: »
    Michael Collins was, controversially, given a PG rating, as far as I remember

    The censor even encouraged teenagers to go see it.

  • Closed Accounts Posts: 62 ✭✭✭ Small Wonder

    Thanks for the replies.

    I seem to remember the Michael Collins debacle alright. It's interesting that the censor would take that kind of position.

    I assume the same was true of The Passion of the Christ as well - an otherwise 18-rated movie being downgraded because of its particular subject matter.

    On the UK front, Mark Kermode, who's usually very supportive of the BBFC, was quite critical of the 15 rating that Made in Dagenham was given because he felt that it ought to be seen by young people.

    I'd tend to agree with him, and indeed the Irish censor in those two instances, but where do you draw the line?

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