Review for Censor
Enid is a Censor working for the BBFC during the height of the Video Nasty-era of the 1980s. When one of the films she passed inspires someone to murder their family she begins to question what she is watching and also her memories. Having lost a sister when she was young, she believes that one of the films she has watched is eerily similar to the events of that day. Is it all in her head or has she finally found her sister?
This is such a great film that it is sad that for me the ending just doesn't work. I won't spoil this, but for me by the end I was left confused and ended up watching with all of the included Commentaries to see if I could get any clearer-I didn't.
However, this was a fantastic look at the Video Nasty-era and it is surprising that no one has done a film based on the real events which took place.
Niamh Algar as Enid was mesmerising to watch and her transformation throughout the film was just brilliant. I'm not sure if she missed deadlines for any awards, but I wouldn't be surprised if she was nominated for a BAFTA for this. Director Prano Bailey-Bond will no doubt be nominated for Best Debut and this is well deserved as the film is well shot, beautifully edited, with some nice nods to the VHS tracking which just made me smile when I saw it.
Like many recent horror films (e.g. Saint Maud) the fans and critics have loved this film and I did too, until that rather odd ending. If I could just understand what was going on, then it would have been much more satisfying.
If you are interested in Censorship in film in the UK, especially during the Video Nasty era, then this set is a gold mine. Two disks of extra features and many that I did not expect. There are two Commentaries which are both fine and really give a lot of information regarding the film and how and why it was made.
Nasty the short film by Director Prano Bailey-Bond, has its moments, but is essentially a precursor to this film and I do wish there had been a connection. It was fine, but nothing special.
The Making of Censor is a great look at the making of the film and everyone involved seems to have enjoyed doing so.
My Nasty Memories is a new interview with David Gregory regarding the History of the Video Nasties. This is a fun interview with him showing off his collection and explaining just what it was like growing up at that time. He is also the Director of Ban the Sadist Videos which is included in its entirety and I must say if you have not seen this, you really should, as it is a wonderful set of documentaries showing the Video Nasties scare in the 1980s and then the aftermath and almost resurgence in the 1990s. I almost want to say that you should buy this film just for this alone.
The second disk is filled to the brim with extra features regarding the making of the film. Personally, I think there is far too much for a film like this. Most are interviews with those behind the scenes and many are frankly boring, unless you are interested in those aspects of filmmaking, such as editing or composing. If you enjoyed the film, then you will love this, if you only have a passing interest, then it is doubtful you would sit through them all.
Censor is a good film and one that I did enjoy. The ending really didn't work for me, but a lot of people have enjoyed it and this two disk set will certainly satisfy them. With a different ending or a less confusing ending, then this may have been better, but for the amount of things regarding the Video Nasty-era then this is still a great set to own