News From:The Straits Timesposted on 21 March at 4:50 PM
21 March at 4:50 PM

Local film Sex.Violence.FamilyValues not approved for screening at Asean film festival

By John Lui

Roadblocks have once again appeared for the controversial Singapore movie Sex.Violence.FamilyValues - this time, in Malaysia.

The English-language film by Singapore film-maker Ken Kwek was yanked from screens in Singapore last year for alleged racial insults in its dialogue. It was allowed back in cinemas here last week after edits were made.

The film has been given a "not approved for screening" ("tidak lulus untuk tayangan", or TUT) verdict by the Film Censorship Board Of Malaysia (LPF).

It had been entered in the inaugural Asean International Film Festival And Awards (AIFFA), to be held next week, from March 28 - 30 in Kuching, Sarawak. The festival is supported by various official bodies in Malaysia, including Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the National Film Development Corporation Malaysia (FINAS).

The Singapore liason director of the festival, Mr Kamil Haque, 30, says that both the unedited and edited versions were submitted for approval. Both have been disallowed.

The 47-minute film is an anthology of three short films that deal with issues such as sexuality, racial stereotypes and social values about the role of daughters and women.

As far as Mr Haque is aware, no other Singapore film submitted to the festival has run afoul of the Malaysian censors. Singapore entries include comedy Taxi! Taxi! (2013) starring Gurmit Singh and the military comedy Ah Boys To Men (2012), directed by Jack Neo.

Ken Kwek, 33, sent this response to The Straits Times by email: "I'm definitely getting a sense of deja vu. But there's no point in repeating our defense of the film. Now that the Singapore version is out, I'm interested to hear what audiences here think."

Since its opening in Singapore last week, the film has earned a healthy $18,000, according to Kwek.


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