Censorship in Film

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In today’s society, media censorship is a controversial issue. What exactly is the best policy to follow in Canada has yet to be settled. Communist countries such as China and Russia, as well as countries whose people are controlled by a religious fundamentalist government have the ability to control, and/or alter what is released into the mass media for public consumption. They will not allow anything offensive to the dominant religion or the homeland to be released. In Canada, a democratic nation, we pride ourselves on having the right to Freedom of Speech. What confuses most people is the difference between banning and censoring films. The main difference is when a film is banned, it is completely off limits for anyone to view. This method is very popular in countries such as Singapore, and Malaysia. They ban films that we find totally acceptable, even children’s films will be forbidden if seen as offensive in any way. Censorship is an alteration or deletion of a scene or line of dialog in a film that is seen to be harmful, or immoral. This is a much more favoured path to take as compared to the complete outlawing of a film, because this avenue limits the amount of potentially harmful material without totally interfering with freedom of speech. To ensure the right to freedom of speech in film, there is in place a rating system in the United States called the MPAA Rating System(Motion Picture Association of America).This system utilizes ratings G(General), PG(Parental Guidance), PG-13(Parental Guidance under the age of 13), R(Restricted), and NC-17(the most severe a film can get). In Canada we call it the Canadian Home Video Rating System, and the ratings we utilize are G, PG, 14A, 18A, and R. In Quebec they have a seperate method of rating as well called the Régie du Cinéma,with ratings ranging from G, 13+,16+, and 18+. Film ratings always cause
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