British Board of Film Classification

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Type of media Film

Approved Running time 128m 46s

Release date 11/11/2011

BBFCInsight Contains strong language, once very strong, racist terms & animal killings

Genre(s) Drama

Director(s) Andrea Arnold

Cast includes Kaya Scodelario, James Howson

Cut This work was passed uncut.

BBFCinsight publication date 01/11/2011

Note: The following text may contain spoilers

WUTHERING HEIGHTS is an adaptation of the Bronte novel about the intense relationship between a young woman and the young man whom her father adopts and welcomes into the family house. The film was classified '15' for strong language, one use of very strong language, racist terms and animal killings.

There are six uses of strong language, and one use of very strong language. These uses are permitted at '15' where the BBFC's Guidelines state 'There may be frequent use of strong language (for example, ‘fuck’). The strongest terms (for example, ‘cunt’) may be acceptable if justified by the context. Aggressive or repeated use of the strongest language is unlikely to be acceptable'. The one use of very strong language is directed and somewhat aggressive but it is used instinctively and in self defence by the protagonist after a man accuses him of trespassing and tells him he should be hanged straight away. The protagonist feels that he has been unjustly treated and misunderstood by the wealthy family he has just met. There are also three uses of the discriminatory term 'nigger', two of which are directed at the protagonist. The language is contained at '15' where 'The work as a whole must not endorse discriminatory language or behaviour', given that its uses are by a very unpleasant character over whom the protagonist eventually triumphs. The character is also immediately caned by his father as punishment for using the term.

There are four scenes involving live animals, with a sheep's throat being cut, a rabbit's neck being broken and two dogs seen hanging from their collars from a fence and a branch, implying that they are left to die. Assurances have been provided by the production company explaining in detail how these scenes were filmed, including detail of special effects employed, so as not to harm any of the animals involved.


Artificial Eye Film Co. Ltd
Classified date(s)
Main language
Submitted run time
128m 46s
Approved footage
BBFC reference
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