A documentary analyzing the furore which so-called "video nasties" caused in Britain during the 1980s.A documentary analyzing the furore which so-called "video nasties" caused in Britain during the 1980s.A documentary analyzing the furore which so-called "video nasties" caused in Britain during the 1980s.
That's not to say I, or any right minded parent, would purposely seek out the likes of I Spit On Your Grave, Driller Killer et al, and then sit down our six year olds in front of the TV, "hey kids, watch this, it's really cool", but the moral panic whipped up by the press and politicians not fit to actually run the country, was at the time like some sort of hysteria. It was like The Sex Pistols saying a rude word on the television was seen as the starting point for the break down of civilised society!
Jake Wests' documentary could quite easily have been a loaded piece just arguing about freedom of choice, artistic integrity etc, in fact when you see that respected purveyors of British Horror like Chris Smith, Neil Marshall, Kim Newman and Andy Nyman are lined up for comments, it lends one to think that might be the case. However, and of course they have their own opinions and spleen venting towards the whole thing, West deals in facts, deconstructing the figures and viability of supposed research into what our youngsters were watching back then. And if you believe Tory MP Graham Bright, our dogs as well!
Led by the key player, Martin Baker who still to this day is happily awaiting for the government to try and sue him for exposing the truth, this documentary lays it down true. Complete with old footage, stills and newspaper reports, the time period is brought vividly to life (remember those top loading video recorders!), so yes there's obviously a big nostalgia factor for myself and my luminaries; Messrs Marshall etc. This shouldn't detract from the core issue of censorship and the abuse of such, making this an essential viewing for any horror film fan.
Hey! Don't get me wrong, in truth 90% of the films that made the infamous banned list were, and still are, pretty naff, where quite often the cover of the VHS was far more scary than anything in the film! But that's not the point is it? 9/10
- Nov 11, 2013