The MPAA has banned the poster for director Stevan Mena’s indie-slasher Bereavement over its depiction of a six-year-old boy carrying a very big knife alongside the serial murderer who abducted him (shown above). The film is a prequel to Mena’s 2005 feature film debut Malevolance.
He tells Fangoria:
The MPAA has banned the poster for depicting a child holding a weapon. It’s hugely disappointing, because that poster really encapsulated the plot of the film with an intriguing image. It’s a real setback for us, considering the challenges we already face competing for attention with a small budget.
The film’s synopsis reads:
In 1989, six year old Martin Bristoll was kidnapped from his backyard swing in Minersville Pennsylvania. Graham Sutter, a psychotic recluse, kept Martin imprisoned on his derelict pig farm, forcing him to witness and participate in unspeakable horrors. Chosen at random, his victim’s screams were drowned out by the rural countryside.
For five years, Martin’s whereabouts have remained a mystery, until 17 year old Allison Miller (Alexandra Daddario) comes to live with her Uncle, Jonathan (Michael Biehn). While exploring her new surroundings, Allison discovers things aren’t quite right at the farmhouse down the road. Her curiosity disturbs a hornet’s nest of evil and despair that once torn open, can never be closed.
Personally, I think the MPAA have read the poster all wrong. Yes, it conveys the film’s horrific plot, but it also speaks to how rewarding it is to mentor children. Sure, teaching a kid how to gut a hot chick isn’t going to provide much of a future for that kid, but it would boost the killer’s self esteem, something they commonly lack. Just saying.
Anyway, peep the trailer: