Censuring The Censors
Rod W coordinates and maintains these entries. He also maintains The
Chopping List, a comprehensive guide to movies which have been censored in
Thanks to an eagle-eyed reader, it is sad to say that this version of Videodrome is not the uncut version, as originally reported by me. The original Australian release on VHS rental was missing a lot more footage: some gore, some S&M between Nicki and Max (including Nicky Brand getting a cigarette 'brand'), and more shots of the Videodrome torture pirate tapes. This DVD is better, but it appears to be the US R-rated version, and hence is still missing:
- The complete reveal of the Oriental dildo, which lasts 4 seconds longer.
- When Max and Nicki first get together, Max picks up a needle from the floor and traces it along Nicki's legs and torso.
- When Max pulls the needle from Nicki's left ear, four seconds showing the needle sliding out of the lobe and being held clear are cut.
- Max pushing the needle into Nicki's right ear amounts to about 2 seconds of delete video.
- The view of Max and Nicki making love on the floor of the torture chamber is longer by about 5 seconds.
- The shot of Max's second executive murder runs for 23 frames in the PAL version and 48 frames in the NTSC version, amounting to 1 second of missing film.
- The shot of Barry Convex's face splitting open is more lingering, as are some of the other points of view.
- An additional close up of Barry's open chest, with the jagged ends of ribs clearly visible, amounts to 3 seconds.
According to a source, back in the 1980s Universal originally submitted the US R-rated version to the Australian censors, who granted it an R 18+ classification. But an even shorter cut, taken from the UK PAL master, was released on rental video. This is the only version I had ever seen until I saw the US unrated director's cut. The UK VHS sell-thru tape, which was supposedly uncut, is also the US R-rated release. The UK PAL laserdisc is uncut, are is the Criterion special edition DVD.