Amazon Prime Video has decided not to make Saint-Narcisse, Bruce LaBruce’s darkly comic psycho-sexual thriller, available on its UK platform. The film, which has received an 18 certification from the British Board of Film Censors, had been available on Amazon Prime Video in both the US and France, but has since been removed.
Tom Abell, MD of Peccadillo, the UK-based distributor of LGBTQ-themed films, commented, “We are totally mystified as to why Amazon Prime Video is refusing to make the critically acclaimed ‘Saint-Narcisse’ available to its customers, both here in the UK and internationally.
“Whilst this hugely entertaining film is full of the outrageousness and provocations that are Bruce LaBruce’s hallmarks, we have no idea if Amazon’s objections relate to the film’s themes, or to particular sequences, or a combination thereof.”
Abell continued, “I’m genuinely puzzled because there are numerous other films available on Amazon Prime Video which explore similar themes, and several which are far more sexually explicit. It is somewhat alarming to note the company’s increasing tendency to refuse certain queer films access to their platform.”
Saint-Narcisse, which remains available to rent from PeccadilloPOD, tells the story of a narcissistic young man (Félix-Antoine Duval) who discovers he has an identical twin, raised in captivity by a wicked priest. When destiny brings the brothers together, they soon become embroiled in an anarchic web of sex, revenge and redemption.
Watch the official trailer here:
Cut to shreds
Bruce LaBruce said, “It’s almost reassuring to know that I can still be banned or censored in this day and age! After being available for five months on Amazon Prime in the USA, my movie Saint-Narcisse has been removed from the platform in the US, France, and the UK for ‘offensive content’. My movies have been banned in various territories over the years and cut to shreds since the early 90s by British censors, but considering what’s available on these platforms now, it’s quite astonishing.”
LaBruce continued, “What’s interesting to me is that it’s not the sexual explicitness of Saint-Narcisse that is preventing it from being streamed on Amazon Prime – there is none – but the subversive and challenging sexual themes and implications of the film.
“For smaller independent films and distributors, decisions like this really do make it even more difficult than it already is to produce and promote work autonomously. I’m curious to know precisely what has got the platform into such high dudgeon!”
Amazon Prime Video has form when it comes to banning LGBTQ-themed content, citing “offensive content” for their refusal to show Chilean prison drama The Prince, the 2022 re-release of John Cameron Mitchell’s Shortbus, and NQV Media’s short film compilation The Male Gaze: Nocturnal Instincts.
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