Research

Scope and Content Note

Information in this series on films rejected or approved with eliminations shows the Motion Picture Division's concern with sex, violence, and adult situations such as infidelity or abortion. The files reveals that these concerns diminish over time.

The files of films approved with eliminations provide the serial number of the film, date received, film title, applicant's name, manufacturer's name, number of reels, date of examination, examiners' names, a description or transcript of the changes/eliminations required for final approval, the reel number on which the altered scene or dialogue is located, and the reason for the determination ("immoral," "will incite crime," "inhuman," etc.). For films that were rejected outright, all of the above information is included, as well as a summary of the plot including a critique of the acting and dialogue, plot, and/or action, and the reason(s) why the film was not licensed.

In addition to the eliminations and rejections, earlier reviews contain separate forms recording appeals and applications for reexaminations. These forms provide the title of the film being appealed, number of reels, manufacturer, original decision, serial number issued to film, date of examination, date of re-examination, date of final action, determinations or specifications regarding particular eliminations, remarks or reasons given for requests for re-examination, and the results of the appeal.