- 10 Apr 01
Oliver Stone’s controversial new movie Natural Born Killers has been banned in Ireland. Liam Fay finds it hard to discover why.
The decision last week by the Irish Film Censor, Seamus Smith, to refuse a certificate to the new Oliver Stone movie, Natural Born Killers, highlights once again the arbitrary, archaic and repressive nature of the movie censorship system in this country.
The film, which was originally due for release here on November 18th, has already won rave reviews in the U.S. where it has also been doing very healthy box-office business. Starring Woody Harrelson and Juliette Lewis, it tells the story of a young Bonny and Clyde type couple who wreak national havoc with an armed crime spree that ultimately transforms them into prime time TV heroes.
Warner Brothers, the distributors of the movie, intend appealing the Irish Censor’s decision. The Natural Born Killers body count is high, but really no higher than that found in many recent comparable Hollywood releases. However, the film has become the focus of particular attention primarily because its screenplay was written by Reservoir Dogs/Pulp Fiction wunderkind, Quentin Tarantino (who, unhappy with Stone’s direction, has actually distanced himself from the finished movie) but also because it has been implicated in a number of so-called “copy cat” crimes in the States.