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10 classic American films that have been banned worldwide

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An obscenity to one person is a masterpiece to another. Movies, unlike paintings, sculptures, and music, which are all purely subjective, have a way of igniting debate and dialogue. If you’re still not convinced, take a look at the seemingly list of 10 classic American films that have been banned worldwide due to their subject matter, plot, or even release date. In the wake of religious anger, many of history’s most infamous banned films were put on the block, while others went too far in criticising political figures or organisations. Some, though, appear to be prohibited for no explicable reason at all.

10 classic American films that have been banned worldwide
10 classic American films that have been banned worldwide

Some of the movies on this list are now regarded as cinematic classics, while others are campy B-rated movies created with the express purpose of stirring up indignation and controversy. In spite of the fact that some of these films are among the greatest ever made, they may have clashed with their political contemporaries.

Here are 10 classic American films that have been banned worldwide.

The Great Dictator

In terms of box office revenue, “The Great Dictator” was Charlie Chaplin’s best success. The movie, which makes fun of Adolf Hitler, is regarded as one of Chaplin’s best works. Hitler, it seems, disagreed. The film was outlawed by the fascist ruler in Germany and every nation ruled by the Nazis. Hitler, though, plainly succumbed to his curiosity when he obtained a copy of the movie and showed it twice to private audiences.

The Last Temptation of Christ

The 1955 novel “The Last Temptation of Christ” by Nikos Kazantzakis was outlawed by both the Catholic Church and the Greek Orthodox Church, the latter of which excommunicated the author, thirty years before Martin Scorsese turned it into a contentious movie. Christian organisations from all around the world boycotted and condemned the 1988 premiere of the film, which shows Jesus Christ to be conflicted and interested in sex and marriage. Blockbuster Video denied to stock the movie in its stores, while several theatre chains refused to let the movie play in roughly 4,000 cinemas.

The Exorcist

The video release of “The Exorcist” was ultimately permitted in the United Kingdom in 1999. The movie, which was shown in the United States in 1974, was greeted with both laudatory reviews and utter contempt. Up until 1984, when the British government classed the movie as hazardous and outlawed its sale for a fifteen-year period, it was permitted in Great Britain.

E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial

It’s difficult to believe that Steven Spielberg’s “E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial,” one of the most cherished family movies in American history, could result in a ban. For kids under 11, the Swedish Board of Film Censorship did precisely that, accusing the movie about a cute and lost extraterrestrial of depicting “adults as enemies of children.”

South Park: Bigger, Longer and Uncut

Saddam Hussein appeared regularly in both the TV series and the movie “South Park,” despite the fact that Cartman, Kenny, and the gang are the show’s principal characters. Due to its unfavourable portrayal of Hussein, the Iraqi dictator outlawed the animated television series and the motion picture “South Park: Bigger, Longer and Uncut.”


The Middle East banned 2014’s “Noah” before it even hit theatres because of its main plotline, which starred Russell Crowe as a biblical prophet. The representation of any of “Allah’s prophets” is forbidden under Sharia law. Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar, and other nations that uphold Sharia law denounced the film and forbade their nationals from seeing it.

I Spit on Your Grave

The Irish-American granddaughter of Hollywood legend Buster Keaton plays the lead role in the sexual assault vengeance cult classic “I Spit on Your Grave,” which is graphic, frightening, and filled with cruel violence. However, the Irish censors were unmoved by family tradition or national heritage. Ireland outlawed both the 2010 DVD release and the original 1978 theatrical film.

Battleship Potemkin

The 1925 Soviet propaganda film “Battleship Potemkin” was considered unsafe and subversive in many European nations, despite the fact that it is now regarded as a timeless masterpiece that was innovative for its time. In 1933, Germany outlawed it. The film was outlawed in France, and many copies were destroyed. The restriction on the movie was eventually abolished in Great Britain, although not until 1954. Even the United States outlawed the movie for fear that it would advise sailors on how to mount a successful revolt.

Rambo: First Blood Part Two

The second episode of the “Rambo” series, released in 1985, has Sylvester Stallone’s legendary character John Rambo returning to Vietnam to free POWs. India outlawed the movie for allegedly insulting the Vietnamese and for disparaging the Soviet Union, which was at the time one of India’s main armaments suppliers. Vietnam also forbade the film.


In “Rambo,” the fourth entry in the “Rambo” series, Sylvester Stallone made a comeback to play one of his most well-known characters nearly 25 years after Vietnam outlawed “First Blood: Part 2.” This time, Vietnam permitted its residents to watch the movie. The film’s setting of Myanmar, though, wasn’t as accepting, and the contentious administration there moved quickly to ban it.

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