"Sex, Censorship and the Silver Screen" Forward Into the Past (TV Episode 1996) Poster

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By the 1970s, Americans were undergoing fundamental societal changes. Many US communities banned films such as A Clockwork Orange (1971) and Carnal Knowledge (1971). 'Stanley Kubrick (I)' re-edited A Clockwork Orange (1971) as a result. The film Deep Throat was controversial and popular and was at the vanguard of the the rise of pornographic films. Under the new MPAA rating system, an X rating soon became associated with pornographic films and Last Tango in Paris (1972) (Last Tango in Paris) was the last major studio release to carry an X rating and it wasn't until 1990 that a new adult film category, NC-17, was created. In June 1973, the U.S. Supreme Court returned to local communities the right to set their own standards. European films meanwhile continued to push the limits with films like Salò, or the 120 Days of Sodom (1975) by Pier Paolo Pasolini. The invention of the VCR changed the pornographic film industry and such films became available everywhere.

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