According to a report from Page Six, the nation in the Pacific, Samoa, banned the Elton John film, Rocketman, for its honest portrayal of homosexuality. Approximately 97% of the people there identify as Christian, and society there is considered quite conservative.
The nation’s 2013 law, Crimes Act, mandates that sodomy is an offense punishable by seven years of prison, whether the action taking place is between two consenting adults or not. Leiataua Niuapi Faaui said to the Samoa Observer on Tuesday that the film’s depiction of homosexuality isn’t consistent with the nation’s cultural values and beliefs.
However, Faaui said the story was good, but there is simply too much homosexual content for it to be morally aligned with the country’s defining principles. On Facebook, Apollo Cinemas Samoa wrote they would be censoring the movie.
As it was previously reported, this won’t be the first time a country has banned or censored parts of Rocketman, starring Taron Egerton, revolving around the singer’s relationship with his former manager, John Reid. A company in Russia eliminated approximately five minutes of sexual intercourse, much to the chagrin of the filmmakers and Elton himself.
Despite the fact being gay isn’t a crime in Russia, many people supposedly consider homosexuality as morally inappropriate. Previously, Samoa banned the 2008 flick starring Sean Penn, Milk, which featured the life and struggle of Harvey Milk, one of the first openly-gay American politicians.
Ever since the film opened around 10 days ago, it has scored $101 million internationally. In an op-ed for The Guardian, Mr. John explained that he and other creators fought tooth-and-nail to have the more explicit nature of his life featured on screen, despite protests from the studios.
John joked in the essay that as much as he would like the public to believe he lived a relatively quiet and inoffensive life, such an idea is simply not true. Elton said he didn’t live a “PG-13” lifestyle, and rarely went home alone to read the Bible and drink a warm glass of milk.