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To think if N.Korea released a film worldwide about assassinating Obama, America would not see it as an expression of 'free speech'

(76 Posts)
CumberCookie Sat 20-Dec-14 12:34:44

Just that really.

Kin Jong-un is obviously a maniac but that doesn't mean that it is ok to produce a crass comedy film about the assassination of a leader of state. Can you imagine the fall out if a state made a comedy about killing Obama? Or perhaps Cameron or the Queen? Its really poor taste I think to make a film like that, no matter how abhorrent the politics of the individual.

PortofinoVino Sat 20-Dec-14 12:40:56

I think you will find that they do this all the time. North Korea make loads of films showing the destruction of the West. They just don't distribute it anywhere but North Korea !!!!

FamiliesShareGerms Sat 20-Dec-14 12:44:16

Naked Gun isn't exactly respectful to a number of heads of state (including the Queen)

Lots of books and films explore what might have happened if, for example, Thatcher had been assassinated in the 1980s or Prince Charles had become king 20 years ago

Is it the fact it's a comedy that offends you?

AuntieStella Sat 20-Dec-14 12:47:10

I don't remember any great outpouring of negative comment about films like The Pope Must Die.

What if course we don't know about this one is if it is actually funny. If it's a bit of a damp squib that's not really funny, then I can see why people might conclude it is tasteless. But I doubt anyone could take it as incentive to harm.

oswellkettleblack Sat 20-Dec-14 12:48:39

I think plenty of Americans would appreciate such a film. He is unpopular there in many quarters.

dreamingbohemian Sat 20-Dec-14 12:49:23

I don't think Americans would freak out actually. First off because freedom of speech is practically a civic religion in the US (1st amendment) and second because any US president is hated by a substantial chunk of the population who won't care.

Wasn't there a British tv film about Bush being assassinated some years ago? I don't remember the CIA hacking into the BBC and starting a cyber war.

Anyway Kim Jong-un is a mass murderer whose regime is responsible for the death and deprivation of millions of people, not to mention constant insecurity in the region which could someday contribute to a major war. So making a tasteless movie about him doesn't really seem like such a big sin does it.

Idontseeanysontarans Sat 20-Dec-14 12:55:07

King Ralph killed off almost the entire royal family - I don't remember a huge outcry about that...
YABU, there would have been a bit of a fuss on Fox News but it would have gone ahead anyway.
Sony have really shown themselves up and made the film bigger than it ever would have been without all of this. It doesn't even look like a particularly good film but it will be a highly sought after cult classic just because it pissed off North Korea.
According to Den of Geek independent cinemas have tried to replace the Interview with Team America: World Police but Paramount have made it unavailable ..

AgentCooper Sat 20-Dec-14 12:55:14

While I completely condemn this kind of censorship, one thing that is bugging me is that all this is adding to the Western image of N Korea as a big old joke. I actually can't be fucked with spoiled, rich white guys from Judd Apatow's boys' club having a good old chuckle about the hilarity of Kim Jong Un, a guy whose dynasty is responsible for the deaths of so many, in horrendous ways.

I think there's a big difference between a N Korean film visualising the destruction of the West which won't be shown anywhere outside Pyongyang and a Hollywood film with two big stars which will be shown in countries all over the world. It was a bloody stupid idea.

CumberCookie Sat 20-Dec-14 12:58:42

Portfolio - Thats why I said "Worldwide"

Dreaming - I'm fully aware of what a despicable human being he is. The idea of making a crass comedy about him DOES NOT offend me. I'm all for it. I just think that making a COMEDY about killing him goes over the mark, and if a similar film was made about killing another leader of state people would think it was utterly distasteful.

BoomBoomsCousin Sat 20-Dec-14 14:00:33

YABU and appear to have no idea what America's championing of freedom of speech is all about. Freedom of speech is nothing to do with insisting that expressions of speech are tasteful or appropriate or nice, it's about understanding that you shouldn't stop people from expressing something simply because you don't like it. Of course many Americans would find it distasteful for a film to be made depicting the assassination of the president, many would probably find The Interview distasteful too. But America's freedom of speech laws are use to protect the right of the minority to express themselves even when their expression is disliked by the majority. There's not much point in saying you support freedom of expression if you are going to use questions of taste (rather than harm) to dictate the limits of that freedom.

Post like yours are depressing OP. The UK seems to be getting less and less tolerant and losing even the understanding of what tolerance is.

Meechimoo Sat 20-Dec-14 14:28:27

I can't believe Sony failed to consult with Obama before cancelling the release. It's a highly sensitive political issue and they should have spoken to the President before doing this. As it happens, I believe Obama was right and they shouldn't have cancelled the films release. So YABU.

CumberCookie Sat 20-Dec-14 14:34:22

um... No where did I say it should be censored or banned. Just that I think it is distasteful and that countries would be offended if it was about their own head of state.

I have as much right to be offended by something as other people have not to be. That is freedom of speech is it not?

Bulbasaur Sat 20-Dec-14 15:16:11

It's a marketing ploy. hmm

Right now with threats, they'll lose a lot of money on opening night if attendants are afraid to show up.

They've taken an empty threat and run with it to garner publicity. If North Korea could do any serious damage to the US, we'd already have troops in there.

Just you wait, they're going to ham it up, then "bravely" announce that they won't let the terrorists win, and release it to theaters. Everyone will go see it to see what the hype is about, and BAM more money. I'm betting in January before all the hype dies down.

Hollywood is not afraid of any terror threats, they're afraid of a movie they've heavily invested in tanking and losing them money.

lessthanBeau Sat 20-Dec-14 16:34:03

'It's now very common to hear people say, "I'm rather offended by that", as if that gives them certain rights. It's no more than a whine. It has no meaning, it has no purpose, it has no reason to be respected as a phrase. "I'm offended by that." Well, so fucking what?' —Stephen Fry

incredibly poor taste can not be a deciding factor in what is made and what is not, that would be censorship wouldnt it?

PhaedraIsMyName Sat 20-Dec-14 16:46:40

While I completely condemn this kind of censorship, one thing that is bugging me is that all this is adding to the Western image of N Korea as a big old joke.

Does anyone think North Korea is a joke?

atwitsendbutpaddlinghard Sat 20-Dec-14 17:18:19

Agree the movie was in incredibly bad taste and it was quite unnecessary. A bit like the Dutch cartoonist insulting Muhammed. Such unnecessary hassle and aggro.
Yes people die to protect rights such as the freedom of speech.
but "idiots" who make bad taste /unnecessary insulting publications just for fun or money or just because they can, cause unnecessary bad feeling and don't advance the cause of free speech. The trouble they cause is not worth the hassle and they should be more responsible and think of the impact on other people and the consequences of their silly actions..

Alisvolatpropiis Sat 20-Dec-14 17:59:27

Whilst I generally find Stephen Fry to be an utter tit, the quote above posted by Beau, is so on the money.

Neverbuyheliumbalonz Sat 20-Dec-14 18:04:58

I thought Sony weren't releasing it because of threats of 'leaks' about big Hollywood names or something like that, but I could have just made that up? I agree it could just be a great publicity stunt, but also agree that films like this are a bit in bad taste - its all very well laughing at the ridiculousness of North Korea, but then we forget that thousands of people have died under that regime, which suddenly doesn't seem quite as funny.

BoomBoomsCousin Sat 20-Dec-14 20:43:03

You said OP, that Americans would not see it as "free speech". Which shows a complete lack of understanding of what free speech is. Many might well see it as speech in poor taste, or speech that is offensive, but that would not stop it from being free speech. The two things have nothing to do with each other, that's the point of it being "free".

lljkk Sat 20-Dec-14 20:56:55

I agree with OP, the movie plot itself is quite distasteful. Is there a big budget movie in existence about a silly plot to kill Queen Eliz II, just for being a boring old fart symbol of an obsolete institution riddled with bizarre traditions? Australians must have made that movie, right? Or maybe a silly comedy about how Prince Charles could try to knock her off coz he's gone over the edge waiting in the wings, maybe in one scene he could put poison on Prince George's grubby little fingers about to give her a hug....

(what's that noise? All the laughter I hear ringing across the nation? Must be some venture capitalists lining up as I type, too)

OP isn't saying they want it banned (neither do I).

writtenguarantee Sat 20-Dec-14 20:58:05

A bit like the Dutch cartoonist insulting Muhammed. Such unnecessary hassle and aggro.

This incident brought to the forefront a massive difference between western and islamic cultures. One poll had that 78% of british muslims thought that the cartoonists should be prosecuted. I saw the cartoon incident as highly necessary.

You can't expect the head of north korea to appreciate the humour in any movie about him. too bad for him.

writtenguarantee Sat 20-Dec-14 20:59:05

oh at OP, I am sure most americans wouldn't care about such a movie.

twoopsie Sat 20-Dec-14 20:59:24

Isn't r4 book at bedtime about killing mrs t?

Pagwatch Sat 20-Dec-14 21:01:42

I thought the depiction in Team America would have been more offensive. They just obviously didn't see that film.
It's all posturing bollocks.

twoopsie Sat 20-Dec-14 21:06:33

Team america has been banned from playing in Indy cinemas, was planned as a protest.

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