Episode 11 - Censor, Night of the Living Dead, and The Last House on the Left


Recommended Posts

We're all about getting that educational content in under the wire as we take a look at the UK's Video Nasty era! We open with 2021's Censor, a film set during the height of the controversy. Then, we look at two of the films directly affected by the censorship laws of the day: 1968's Night of the Living Dead and 1972's The Last House on the Left. [ 2:24:25 ]


Link to comment
Share on other sites

Excellent review, folks. Great discussion of Last House on the Left. After reading a synopsis of the plot and listening to the review, I am definitely never watching this thing. That said, I do know what happens and I have some thoughts. And yes, I am going to have to get political here because this is a very political movie.

I do not think you can separate Last House on The Left from the overall political culture at the time. Richard Nixon was on his way to a massive landslide re-election victory as President and concerns about violent crime were at a height in 1972. It would get worse before it got better, and even Bill Clinton knew he had to be seen as "tough on crime" to get elected two decades later.

This movie represents the very early stages of the right wing populist propaganda about violent crime: The police cannot protect us and we have to take the law into our own hands. Wes Craven continued these right-wing populist themes a decade later with A Nightmare on Elm Street, how a bunch of fed up parents murdered a child killer when the system failed to punish him. For all of the talk of "liberalism" in Hollywood, there is a very strong current of right-wing populism in movies like this. I don't know what Craven's personal political views are, but those two movies were very much right-wing populist.

The original Death Wish, and all of the (racist!) propaganda that came with that franchise, came out only two years after LHOTL and covers many of the same themes.

Right wing populism is in my opinion very different from true constitutional conservatism, which emphasizes the rule of law and due process to guard against abuses and to ensure the guilty party actually is punished. Even with constitutional safeguards, there have been a number of high-profile cases of people falsely convicted. The Central Park Five is the most obvious example. There is also Bernard Baran, who went to prison during the "satanic panic" of the 1980's and was raped 30 times before being exonerated. This was an early version of QAnon, and it was fully mainstream. And that's far more terrifying than any horror movie.

Hollywood helped fuel the paranoia with propaganda like LHOTL, Death Wish, Stallone's Cobra and many more.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Missy changed the title to Episode 11 - Censor, Night of the Living Dead, and The Last House on the Left

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.