A few days after Disney announced there won’t be any dwarfs in…Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, we’re taking a look at twenty iconic films and series that might not be out today, or at least not as we knew them!
The fourth Disney animated classic, Dumbo is one of the greatest creations by Walt Disney and his teams. In late 2020, the animated film made headlines when the group decided to put up a sign at the beginning of the film to warn that the film contained certain stereotypes towards certain groups of people or cultures. In this case, the African American community, represented in the form of crows. We could also have mentioned The Aristocats, Peter Pan or Aladdin.
2# Dragon Ball
Of course, we will not shame you in introducing Dragon Ball, the most iconic Japanese animated series in the world. Club Dorothée’s flagship series, Dragon Ball, would have been heavily featured today, particularly because of the character of Tortue Génial. Totally perverted, he would have been seen as a symbol, even a promoter, of the rape society. Note that upon its release in France, the series received awards for its violence.
3# Taxi Driver
A true masterpiece of the 7th art, crowned with the Palme d’Or in 1976, Taxi Driver is undoubtedly one of legendary filmmaker Martin Scorsese’s most sulphurous films. However, given the relationship between Travis Bickle, played by Robert De Niro, and the character created by Jodie Foster, who plays a 13-year-old prostitute, the film should have struggled today.
One of the best Japanese animated series to follow children growing up in front of Club Dorothée, the series follows the adventures of Nicky Larson (Ryo Saeba in Japanese), a cleaning lady, bodyguard and private detective who is obsessed with pretty girls. Always anxious to touch the breasts and buttocks of those he is tasked with protecting, Nicky would have drawn the wrath of feminist organizations. Also, the 2018 release of the film Nicky Larson and the Perfume of Cupid is a minor miracle in itself.
5# basic instinct
One of the most important films of the 90’s, Basic Instinct is also one of the greatest films of the American era directed by Paul Verhoeven. Known as a sulphurous filmmaker, Verhoeven hit hard again with Basic Instinct, this erotic thriller starring Michael Douglas and Sharon Stone as a bisexual psychopath. The film, which had already provoked the anger of feminist and LGBT associations at the time, was also able to shock with its staging: During what has now become an iconic interrogation scene, Paul Verhoeven filmed Sharon Stone (without panties) changing positions, giving the attentive viewer a surprise look at her Vagina – without telling the actress beforehand.
If the greatest French series of all time was released today, could it be released as it is? Some jokes are now viewed by some as homophobic, others as sexist. Fortunately, fans of the series can count on the deep independence of Alexandre Astier, who has never hesitated to defend his work against those who judged his humor “oppressive”.
7# evening dress
Bertrand Blier, known as the greatest French director, would have a hard time releasing one of his greatest masterpieces today: evening wear. The director of Les Valseuses and Buffet Froid tells the story of a love triangle between Miou-Miou, Michel Blanc and Gérard Depardieu. Despite the film’s great poetry, the poster, which has Gérard Depardieu and Michel Blanc made up in drag, would today be considered homophobic.
8# Clockwork Orange
The pinnacle of Stanley Kubrick’s career, A Clockwork Orange is a cult film that everyone has seen. The film shocked at its release with its great violence and rape scenes and was rated X. It is highly doubtful that the ambiguity of the film and the character of Alex DeLarge, interpreted by Malcolm McDowell, would go through with the general public today…
9# The sopranos
Often considered the best series in history, The Sopranos, according to David Chase, its creator, couldn’t be published today. Upon the release of The Many Saints of Newark, the showrunner had said:
I don’t think I could write The Sopranos the way it is today. There are now too many rules and codes to be respected so as not to violate sensibilities. If I tried to sell The Sopranos to a TV network in 2021, I would never make it.
10 # La Cage aux Folles
A classic of French comedy that brings together Michel Serrault, Michel Galabru and Ugo Tognazzi (dubbed by the great Pierre Mondy), La Cage aux Folles by Edouard Molinaro would have a hard time getting out today. This film, which deals with homosexuality with a lot of humor, would be criticized a lot today, if only because of its title.
11# Pretty woman
The cult film of the 90s, Pretty Woman, could not be in the cinemas today, according to the admission of its leading actress Julia Roberts. In fact, it seems hard to imagine that this film, which tells the love story between a young prostitute and a wealthy businessman 18 years her senior, would get a huge response. Some would see it as a sex film.
12# The last tango in Paris
Bernardo Bertolucci’s great film, The Last Tango in Paris, remains controversial, particularly for its famous rape scene, which left actress Maria Schneider particularly traumatized. In fact, to make the scene more realistic, with the complicity of Marlon Brando, Bertolucci had not warned the actress about the content of the scene. She will also confide that she got into cocaine, heroin and self-loathing as a result of that scene. When Bertolucci said he felt guilty about being the cause of this trauma, he nonetheless said he had no regrets about his method.
13# Starship Troops
As we’ve said before, Paul Verhoeven is a filmmaker, sulphurous to say the least. One of his greatest masterpieces, the sci-fi film Starship Troopers, drew particular criticism upon its release in 1997, with some critics calling it a “fascist” film. The critics at the time didn’t understand the feature film, which made fun of fascism. If the film is considered a cult now, it would no doubt face the same kind of criticism if released today…
14# Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom
Still revered by certain cinephile circles today, the second film in the Indiana Jones saga remains the least affordable of the four and the least appreciated by its director Steven Spielberg. Apart from its very somber atmosphere, which bucks all current Hollywood trends, the film certainly could not be released today because of the image it gives of the Indians and because Indy plays the role of the “white man who comes to to save the Third World”.
15# The three brothers
The cult film of the 90’s, The Three Brothers, would be heavily criticized if released today. Representative of the humor of the unknown, this feature film would itself be viewed as sexist, homophobic, or racist.
16# The Infernal Montparnasse Tower
A cult comedy from the early 2000s, La Tour Montparnasse Infernale has captured millions of fans across France. But could it come out the way it is today? In our opinion no. If only because of the fight scene against “the Chinese”, which ends with an accent imitation of Eric Judor. “The sweet and sour sauces, oh my god, they’re delicious!”
It may be surprising to find friends in this selection given the sitcom’s cult following. And yet several elements would make it impossible to broadcast as is today. First, reference was made to the fact that the Central Perk Buddy Gang is all white. Also, some jokes, particularly about Ross’ ex-wife or Chandler’s father, could be considered homophobic or even transphobic.
18# Married, two children
Cult sitcom of the 80s/90s, married, two children would have trouble to please everyone today. The series plays with clichés that would be considered sexist today: the couple’s daughter is a crazy blonde, the mother is happy to spend her husband’s money on groceries or the neighbor who spends her time criticizing him.
Léon is a cult 1990s film and one of the most popular films of filmmaker Luc Besson’s career. However, we can imagine what the reactions might be if the film was released today. Questionable is the ambiguous relationship between the character of Léon (played by Jean Reno) and that of Mathilde (Natalie Portman), at the age of 13. Additionally, Natalie Portman explained that being sexualized in Leon at such a young age and the resulting harassment “took her away.” [sa] own sexuality.
20/ OSS 117: Cairo, spy nest and OSS 117: Rio no longer responds
The first two parts of Michel Hazanavicius’ OSS 117, considered one of the great French comedies, portray a secret agent fully in tune with his times: sexist, a little racist, very reactive, he always seems to be against the times and the evolution of customs. If these are still cult films today, the third part entitled OSS 117: Red Alert in Black Africa directed by Nicolas Bedos makes us believe that if the first two parts were released today they would lose a lot by their carelessness and insolence would .