July 1st 2000

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Articles from this issue:

Cover Story: The Roebuck Plains land scandal

Editorial: Issues for the Defence White Paper

Canberra Observed: National Party caravan still hitched to Coalition

Economics: World’s farm subsidies rising: wake up Australia

Rural: Dairy deregulation turning sour

Straws in the Wind

News Weekly, National Civic Council, Colin Teese, TRansurban, CityLink, Steve Bracks, Victoria, GST, toll roads, Victorian Labor Government

Economics: Funny flags and Australian shipping

United Nations: Family groups attacked at UN meeting

East Asia: Japanese election: more of the same?

Education: Drugs in schools: adults failing the challenge

Letter: Aboriginal land claims

Letter: Benalla by-election postscript

Letter: 'Pitch Black' obscenities

Books promotion page

Letter: 'Pitch Black' obscenities

by Michael Darby

News Weekly, July 1, 2000


The prevalence of obscenities at the modern cinema is an unpleasant trend. Defenders of the practice claim (unconvincingly) that obscenity is sometimes necessary for the sake of historical realism.

Clearly, this defence is not available for science fiction cinema, set far in the future.

A major offender is the science fiction movie, "Pitch Black," with a script which proves that obscenities are even less attractive when uttered by women and children. "Pitch Black" also has its male lead utter a particularly offensive blasphemy, which has no connection whatever to the plot, and therefore has been inserted gratuitously in the script as an expression of some individual’s warped personality.

Young people look to cinema for role models. A major disadvantage of obscenity is that it displaces normal vocabulary.

Listen to a teenager with a displaced vocabulary, and chances are you are listening to a teenager already suffering from a serious disadvantage.

Michael Darby,
Wahroonga, NSW

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