Vietnam bans horror film for lewd, racy content

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Teen horror film Bay cap 3 by Vietnamese-American director Le Van Kiet has been banned in Vietnam, according to a decision released on May 7 by the Vietnam Cinema Department.

The film was produced by Coco Paris for over VND7 billion (US$350,000) and it has been distributed to theaters nationwide by Megastar, Galaxy, BHD Star, Dong Da. It was previously scheduled for release on May 18.

However, according to the decision sent to Megastar, nine-members of the National Movie Censorship Council didn't approve the film because it "tells the story of a high school student who is ignored and disregarded by his parents and friends. Due to his hatred toward them, on a trip to Da Lat with his friends, he killed them with a series of unexpected traps.

"On one hand," the statement continues, "the film highlights the lust for sex among the teenage group, on the other hand, because the student hates to such an extent that he does not hesitate to consciously kill people, it describes and incites violence.

"The film's content is inappropriate for Vietnamese culture and tradition, especially for high school students. Therefore, the Vietnam Cinema Department does not approve to release Bay cap 3 in any way, and makes this announcement to Megastar in order to keep the film from spreading around the local market."

The film's producer Tran Trong Dan, producer of the horror film Ngoi nha trong hem (House in the Alley) and deputy director of the Vietnam Film Festival in the US since 2009, told Thanh Nien on May 9 that he does not think that film has overly-hot, violent scenes.

"Regarding local culture, each has their own opinion and view. As the film's producer, I didn't waste my money making overly-taboo, trashy scenes so that my film gets banned from local screens," said Dan.

However, Ngo Phuong Lan, the department's deputy director, told Tuoi Tre Newspaper on May 11 the film violates the Cinema Law and film censorship regulations.

"Such films are not allowed to be screened not only for teens or people under 16 years old, but for people of all ages," said Lan.

Tran Trong Dan said he respected the decision and was willing to change some details or cut off some scenes of the film to release it here.

Ghost Rider 2, The Hunger Games and The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo have also been banned in Vietnam this year.

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