Writers: Andrew James & Joshua Ligairi
Composer: Chris Ohran
Starring: Danny Thompson, Ray Lines, Alan Erb, Neil LaBute, Richard Dutcher, Robert Perry, Isaac Lifferth, Steven Soderbergh, Jared Hess, Michael Apted
More info: IMDb
Tagline: Sex. Violence. Mormons. Movies.
Plot: Dozens of Utah DVD retailers attracted unwanted attention from Hollywood heavyweights when, in the name of conservative family values, they began sanitizing films of sex, nudity, profanity, and violence. Outraged over the unauthorized editing of their work, prominent filmmakers began to speak out, thrusting the two groups into an intense legal, theoretical, and moral battle that would last six years before coming to a shocking conclusion.
My rating: 7/10
Will I watch it again? No.
Many years ago I heard about a company that removed offensive material for church-going folk and rented and sold them in Utah. I thought it was nuts that they weren't immediately sued out of business. I was shocked to find it out it took ten years or so for them to stop but there are still companies out there that continue to do it. What they were doing is blatantly illegal regardless of the righteous reasons they claimed. I knew that one company had snuffed it but I was very curious as to how it went down and this documentary lays it down for you. It's very entertaining and it's funny to see so many guilty people hang themselves with their words, particularly one Danny Thompson who owned a video rental store that participated in this scheme. He's very vocal and there are some interesting accusations thrown at him about his personal life that are sure to shock and surprise you (although not so much when you look at these people generally as hypocrites). There is some satisfaction knowing the troubles he created for himself but his thrusting himself into the limelight as the poster boy (literally, too) for this industry is his own undoing. Douche.
I'm not exactly a "let's string 'em up" guy when it comes to this. They do have a point when it comes to providing a service for a marketplace that's demanding their product. There are a lot of folk in Utah that want to see PG, PG-13 and R movies but without all of the good stuff. It's ridiculous, I know, because often times the offending material enhances or outright tells the story. If you are a religious person, why would you want to see a diluted PULP FICTION (1994), for example, which is drenched in language and violence. The entire movie is about bad things and the people who carry them out. Wouldn't you prefer to stay away from something filled with so much underlying sin? It beats me why someone would want to see it like that. It's on Netflix instant. Check it out. It's worth a look.