Big Game is in Irish cinemas this week and it's a bit of daft fun starring Samuel L. Jackson as the President of the United States who gets lost in the woods in Finland after an assassination attempt and has to rely on a local boy to get him to safety. Here's the trailer.
The film is the most expensive Finnish production of all time with a budget of $8.5 million and it looking to make some of that dosh back with an international release. And it should connect with audiences looking for an undemanding adventure, especially for those who are also fans of Jackson, which is surely almost everyone?
One thing you won't find in the film though is Jackson's signature f-bombs, a trademark so powerful it was previously added back into the feature Snakes on a Plane after extensive reshoots in response to fans. But Big Game is more of a kid-friendly piece, with a few lower level curse words and little in the way of onscreen violence.
That's all fine and dandy but Big Game director Jalmari Helander did intend for one f-word to make the final cut in a scene towards the end of the film which is also previewed in the above trailer. The varient of the word with an m at the start appears in the Finnih cut of the film and that which will be on limited release in the US in June but you won't quite hear it in Irish or UK cinemas.
That's because before the film was submitted to the British Board of Film Classification (BBFC) in April, the distributor asked them for some advice on how to secure a 12A rating in the UK. And it was suggested that the offending word would have to be removed to ensure the film didn't get a 15's rating. And so it came to pass - the version sent before the BBFC had the word 'partially obscured' and the film passed at 12A. You can read more about it - with mild spoilers - here.
And so to the Irish release. The Irish Film Classification Office (IFCO) isn't a censoring body so it isn't able to insist on cuts to a film, instead stamping it with the appropriate cert. And in this case, as happens quite often, the version which went before the IFCO was the previously trimmed UK cut, which was passed with a 12A.
The result is a film with 'one use of implied strong language.' Not a major change in the grand scheme of things but it's always interesting to find out just how many hoops films have to jump through in order to be seen on screen. The takeaway from all this - if you want to see (and hear) the full and uncut version of Big Game, you might have to wait for the DVD.
Big Game is in cinemas in Ireland from the 8th of May 2015.