Christopher G. Moore
Cutting and Dicing the Da Vinci Code Thai Style
Censors in South Korea and India have backed away with the cutting table, knife in hand, and the Da Vinci Code can be shown uncensored in those countries. No one has reported on North Korean or Iranian censors.
In Thailand the censor’s knife, sharpened came down on the film. Snip, snip, slice, slice. According to the Nation censors cut the final 10 minutes from the film. The censorship followed upon the request of local Christian groups.
Not having seen the film, it is difficult to know what impact this cut will have on the movie. In most films the suspense builds toward a climax and the last 10 minutes should have the audience on the edge of their seats. In Thailand the film will the movie simply stop with Tom Hanks drinking a cup of tea?
The reason given for the censorship is that the film uncensored “would have affected the faith of Christians.” We can’t have people just going out and reading and watching whatever they want. That might cause a crisis of faith, someone to raise a question about the bible. One can’t have that happening. It is not enough not to go to the film yourself, no cannot, your faith compels you to prevent others from seeing the full film.
One starts to understand how the two sides in Middle East are so perfectly paired. Funny thing, no one ever starts a war over the principle of intolerance; wars start because others have challenged their faith.
Just so no one going to see the Da Vinci Code in Thailand will be confused, there will be an explanation in Thai telling the audience that “the film is based on fiction.” That along with lopping off the ending of the film, should do the trick. The faithful can retain their beliefs intact. We wouldn’t want anyone tiptoeing through a fog of confusion created by the brilliant (but obviously evil) genius Dan Brown? Too bad they didn’t add another explanation such as, oh, by the way, that Charles Darwin, he also affects our belief, do you think you can ban Origin of the Species from Thai schools and universities? Or at least put a warning on the front cover that the contents are “Inappropriate and slanderous.”