The High Court has ruled that the Video Appeals Committee, must reconsider its decision to grant an 18 certificate to ManHunt 2.Â This followed their overturning of an original BBFC decision to refuse to pass the film.
The BBFC appealed the the VAC judgement because in the Board’s view, it is based on an approach to harm which is an incorrect interpretation of the Video Recordings Act.
The Honourable Mr Justice Mitting sided with BBFC’s argument that the VAC had erred when considering whether Manhunt 2 could be considered harmful to minors who viewed it. Whereas the VAC interpreted this as “actual harm” the BBFC and Mitting believed it should be taken in a broader scope of “potential harm and risk of harm.” The BBFC also argued that the VAC based its decision on whether or not the game would have a “devastating effect on society” and argued that this “harm threshold” was too high.
The Irish certification body, the IFCO, have also banned the game stating “strong graphic violence may be a justifiable element within the overall context of the work. However, in the case of Manhunt 2, IFCO believes that there is no such context, and the level of gross, unrelenting and gratuitous violence is unacceptable.”