UC Berkeley Library

Banned & Censored Films

Total Recall (1990)

Director, Paul Verhoeven. Cast: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Rachel Ticotin, Sharon Stone, Michael Ironside, Ronny Cox. A worker leaves Earth for the mind-bending nightmarish reality of a Martian mining colony filled with rebellious mutants, an alluring and mysterious woman and ruled over by a dictator who can alter reality to suit his whims. 113 min. ; Credits and other information from the Internet Movie Database Given an "X" rating for excessive violence.

Un Chant d'Amour (France, 1950)

Jean Genet's story of male prisoners and a prison guard expressing self love and love for each other. Male homosexual expression is shown together with masturbation, sadism, and fantasy. 28 min. ; also on ; Credits and other information from the Internet Movie Database Banned in Berkeley, CA, 1962.

Vanishing Prarie (1955)

Directed by James Algar. Walt Disney Pictures. Winner of Academy Award for Best Documentary, 1954. 71 min.
Banned by the New York Board of Censors because it showed a buffalo giving birth. The ban was lifted after a complaint by the ACLU. (Bouse, Derek. Wildlife films Philadelphia : University of Pennsylvania Press, c2000. p. 174. [Main (Gardner) Stacks TR893.5 .B68 2000])

Victim (UK, 1961)

Directed by Basil Dearden. Cast: Dirk Bogarde, Sylvia Syms, Dennis Price, Anthony Nicholls, Peter Copley, Norman Bird. A highly respected, but closeted barrister, Melville Farr, risks his marriage and reputation to take on an elusive blackmail ring terrorizing gay men with the threat of public exposure and police action. Widely regarded as the film that provoked the British parliament to begin amending its laws against homosexual acts. 100 min. Credits and other information from the Internet Movie Database

Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? (1966)

Directed by Mike Nichols. Screenplay by Ernest Lehman Cast: Elizabeth Taylor, Richard Burton, George Segal, Sandy Dennis. Martha and George are a bitter aging couple who, with the help of alcohol, use a young couple to fuel anguish and emotional pain towards each other. Based on the play by Edward Albee.

Within our Gates (Library of Congress/Smithsonian Video Collection) (1919)

Directed by Oscar Micheaux. Cast: Evelyn Preer, Flo Clements, James D. Ruffin, Jack Chenault, William Smith, Charles D. Lucas. The earliest surviving feature directed by an African-American, Within our Gates tells the story of a young African-American woman who seeks a Northern white patron for a Southern school for Black children. The scenes of lynching and attempted white-on-Black rape may be a response to D.W. Griffith's "The Birth of a Nation". 79 min.

Woodstock: Three Days of Music and Peace (1970)

A film by Michael Wadleigh. Partial contents: Freedom / Richie Havens -- Joe Hill / Joan Baez -- We're not gonna take it / The Who -- With a little help from my friends / Joe Cocker -- I-feel-like-I'm-fixin'-to-die-rag / Country Joe and the Fish -- Coming into Los Angeles / Arlo Guthrie -- Suite: Judy Blue Eyes / Crosby, Stills & Nash -- I'm going home / Ten Years After -- Rainbows all over your blues / John Sebastian -- At the hop / Sha-Na-Na -- Soul sacrifice / Santana -- I want to take you higher / Sly and the Family Stone -- The Star-Spangled banner / Jimi Hendrix.