Dead Hooker in a Trunk is Censored

An independent theater house in the Canadian Prairies has made a rash decision to stop the Canadian Premier screening of Jen and Sylvia Soska’s independent feature Dead Hooker in a Trunk, a film that has already been screened in a number of other film festivals gaining critical acclaim and awards. An anonymous complaint call said that the title of the film is offensive and so the Roxy Theater chose not to screen the film – even after they approved its screening as part of a double bill event.

This is a message that needs to be sent to this theater house that is the centerpoint of the Dark Bridges Film Festival which is the baby of Row Three’s John Allison.

The film was due to be screened in their home country Canada on April 22nd at the Roxy Theatre in Saskatoon. However after an anonymous caller phoned the theatre complaining about the name of the film, claiming that she was embarassaed for Saskatoon and couldn’t believe they would show a movie with that title after the recent spate of missing prostitutes in Vancouver, the film was pulled.


Now while I generally feel that petitions are completely useless, this is one of the few ways we can send a message to this quiet cultural center of the Canadian Prairies.

Petitions by Change.org|Start a Petition »

There are plenty of films with offensive titles, and they get wide releases and splash posters all over the malls. And I don’t know how “Dead Hooker in a Trunk” is so offensive to begin with. The title is appropriate to the story but says nothing outwardly offensive. It doesn’t say “Rape a Hooker” or “Who cares about the Dead Hooker in the Trunk” … it simply states that a hooker is in the trunk and she is dead. If the simple title alone can offend you so deeply, then simply do not see the film. Since when is it your right to decide for others what they must also think of this movie??

The deeper irony is that despite this film revolving around the titular Dead Hooker, the story itself is as graphic and violent as very popular torture porn franchises like Saw and Hostel, but the film’s description says that the mission of those involved are to bring resolution and peace to this situation. Bet these blind censors didn’t consider that when tearing down the posters advertising its release (which were legally posted in public designated areas). They didn’t consider that this film, despite its horror themes might actually have a positive resolution?

No. Blind ignorance and hate caused them to commit acts of vandalism and lash out against this film, and WORSE… the theater that prides itself on delivering independent film has now bowed to the wills of the ignorant and enabling this blind censorship. They pulled the movie from an already advertised and promoted Double Bill event.

If the movie was universally offensive, then judge the film. Thats what the motion picture rating system is for. That’s what reviews, blogs and journalists are for. You can choose for yourself if you want to see the movie. You can choose for yourself what you thought of the movie. Choosing for someone else is just ignorant and is nothing short of censorship.

I won’t always agree with your choices and films you choose to watch, but I will fight for your right to choose to watch them.

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