Labour MP Keith Vaz, long a critic of violent video games, has taken umbrage to the BBFC’s rating of new Batman flick The Dark Knight.
As reported by The Register, Vaz and Conservative MP Iain Duncan Smith object to the film’s 12A rating, which means that under 12s can see The Dark Knight if accompanied by their parents:
…Vaz said: "The BBFC should realise there are scenes of gratuitous violence in The Dark Knight to which I would certainly not take my 11-year-old daughter. It should be a 15 classification."
Vaz, who has previously railed against video game violence, wants to get the BBFC before his committee’s hearings on knife crime later in the year. Presumably its representatives will be required to explain what they think they’re doing fostering violent knifey rages in children…
The BBFC has defended its rating, admitting that while it was a "borderline" decision, the violence is in over-the-top comic-book fashion and does adhere to the guidelines for a 12A certificate. With a 15 certificate, said spokeswoman Sue Clark, "Younger teenagers would not have been able to see it, and they are the very people who are going to love it. We would have ended up with far more complaints from people who wanted to see the film and couldn’t."
In light of Vaz’z criticism, it’s interesting to note that the BBFC will soon take over video game rating chores if the British government has its way.