Malaysian censorship board has banned 2 movies produced by Malaysian directors lately.

The first being axed was “Village People Radio Show” (Apa Khabar Orang Kampung) by director Amir Muhammad, who also had his movie “The Last Communist” banned last year. Amir blogged about why Village People Radio Show was banned, read it.

If communist related movies are judged too sensitive for Malaysians’ viewing, the 2nd banning is rather peculiar. The movie is “I Don’t Want to Sleep Alone” by international renowned director Tsai Ming Liang.

Here are the 8 reasons given by Malaysian censorship board for the banning; for showing the ‘facts’ that…

1. Malaysians are cheating and abusing foreign labors
2. Locals are not caring enough and not taking care of people that fainted
3. Beggars everywhere
4. Haze in KL; people wearing mask
5. Poverty; people collecting thrash
6. Dirty living environment
7. Abandoned building projects
8. Illegal foreign labors everywhere

We can argue that Tsai’s movie is not reflecting the whole Malaysia environment, but I can see that at least 7 out of the 8 points raised by the censorship board are actual facts that’s happening somewhere in Malaysia.

Local director James Lee summed it up pretty well for the double standard of Malaysian censorship board; questioning the logic of allowing movie like “Remp-it” that idolized illegal bike racing while banning movie that show the ugly side about Malaysian society. [Source]


Thanks to Member of Parliament Mr. Lim Kit Siang for replying my email, and making his effort to lift ban on both movies. Hope that the ban could be lifted in the end, because the movies probably shouldn’t be banned at the first place.

17 Responses to “Malaysian movies banned, by Malaysia”

  1. cp1 Says:
    February 27th, 2007 at 4:25 pm

    i do think they are inflexible in a lot of ways *sigh*

    how can the industry grow .. i am too bored with all the anak mami anak tanjung and the rest in that category .. we need more thriller, action and etc type of movies

  2. Jee Says:
    February 27th, 2007 at 10:51 pm

    We need to see beyond Malaysia’s need actually, we need to produce something that overseas market will demand for as well. Look at Korean dramas these days… it’s so huge; but a decade ago it’s probably just on par with Malaysian dramas.

    And the weird point is… even if the censorship board banned Tsai’s movie, it will still be shown internationally… people outside of Malaysia will still see the bad side of Malaysia.

    For people that don’t know, Tsai Ming Liang (or Chuah Ming Liang perhaps) was a Golden Lion winner of Venice Film Festival, one of the international top movie awards.

    There’s criticism sometime ago that Tsai spent too much time making movies in Taiwan and not doing something about Malaysia… but now that he’s doing something about Malaysia, the censorship board is not welcoming it; such irony.

  3. alice Says:
    February 28th, 2007 at 12:02 am

    it’s a norm that the governemnt (cencorship) to filter something that’s talking “bad” about M’sia although it reflects the real situation…

  4. Jee Says:
    February 28th, 2007 at 2:37 am

    The scariest part is when it becomes a norm for the censorship board to over-filter movies, and that all Malaysians are acceptance to it.

  5. alice Says:
    March 1st, 2007 at 12:32 am

    haha…i stil remember a joke from my lecturer but a bit rude.
    He said “Malaysians are fed with shit everyday, but they are happy eating it”. The sentence a bit rude but it’s true. Malaysians dare not to say NO in most of the cases but just accept it unwillingly, for instance the increasing of toll rates, banning of Malaysian movies with nonsense excuses, etc…

  6. Really Man Says:
    March 1st, 2007 at 7:48 am

    Sad case..Malaysian censorship board very narrow minded..this movie show be a wake up call to all Malaysians and hopefully help sovle these problems. not covering up or sweeping under the ‘mat’.

    As you said, Jee, outsiders can still view the movies. Very poor judgement of MCB. The TRUTH HURTS, yea!?

  7. Jee Says:
    March 1st, 2007 at 10:09 am

    There’s a recent Hong Kong movie named Protege, which the storyline revolves around drugs problem in HK… and the movie are box-office hit.

    MCB (or the government) should have more faith with the people seriously… if we really don’t like the movie, we will ditch it ourselves.

    alice… I certainly don’t like eating shit :p

  8. Jackson Says:
    March 2nd, 2007 at 9:12 am

    Anything we can do to petition the government agency to release the movie? (we must stop eating shit, like Alice Said)

  9. Jee Says:
    March 2nd, 2007 at 11:36 am

    Jackson… raise the issue to the press, or to some famous political bloggers. With their influence, perhaps it could give the censorship board some pressure to review their decision.

    We can easily stop eating shit ourselves, but it take much more effort and power to stop the government from feeding shit.

  10. Jee Says:
    March 2nd, 2007 at 2:20 pm

    Well… I sent Member of Parliament Mr. Lim Kit Siang an email about this; that’s probably as far as I could contribute for the case. Let’s hope that the movies will be allow to show in Malaysia, rightfully.

  11. alice Says:
    March 3rd, 2007 at 11:17 pm

    thanks for ur effort,jee :)

  12. Jee Says:
    March 4th, 2007 at 12:06 am

    alice… it’s just a tiny effort, some typing that’s all, no big deal. I’ll take that as a compliment though, thanks.

  13. Cyril Says:
    March 5th, 2007 at 4:55 pm

    Hopefully, he will do something about it. I don’t like politicians in general (with parents and uncles and aunts talking about politics every other day, who wouldn’t?) But let’s hope we get to see the movies. After all, we all know the truth about Malaysia ourselves. No sense trying to hide something the population already know. At least I hope the population know…

    I am very interested in “I Don’t Want To Sleep Alone” especially. After all, I am sick with all the government’s propoganda videos (and songs) anyway.

  14. Jee Says:
    March 6th, 2007 at 1:37 am

    [edited – just received his email, will see how it goes]

    Heard that Singapore has approve both movies, so it shouldn’t be too hard to find resources for the movies.

  15. Cyril Says:
    March 6th, 2007 at 6:32 pm

    Goody! Now all I need to do is do something shady……

    If I can get it before April, there will be one more movie into the Movie Marathon list my friends and I are planning.

  16. Jee Says:
    March 6th, 2007 at 8:18 pm

    Movie marathon? Does April means anything special?

  17. Cyril Says:
    March 7th, 2007 at 12:56 pm

    Umm, no. ^_^

    Just some activities for the whole class since life in an institute can be boring sometimes. At least they’re suggesting something rather than nothing. I’m happy.

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