The economy rocks, the middle class is growing, the shackles of the Cultural Revolution are a distant memory of a bad dream, but some things in China take a longer time to change. Like censorship.
The second Tomb Raider film, starring actress Angelina Jolie, has been banned in China because it portrays the country “negatively”, authorities said.
Censors said the film portrayed China as a country in chaos.
“After watching the movie, I feel that the westerners have made their presentation of China with malicious intention,” an unidentified official said in reports. The Chinese also complained the film had made the country appear to have no government and run by secret societies.
“The movie does not understand Chinese culture. It does not understand China’s security situation. In China there cannot be secret societies,” the official said.
No secret societies? What does he think the Chinese Communist Party is? The irony is that the film will be banned from the movie theaters, but pirated copies can already be bought all over the country for less than $1 USD per disc. Why do they bother?
Richard Burger is the author of Behind the Red Door: Sex in China, an exploration of China's sexual revolution and its clash with traditional Chinese values.