Nicholson's psychedelic movie returns for release after 35-year trip

The cult Jack Nicholson movie The Trip, which in effect has been banned in Britain for 35 years, has finally been given a certificate by censors.

Written by Nicholson in 1967 and starring Dennis Hopper and Peter Fonda, it was rejected twice for its vivid depiction of LSD use.

But now the British Board of Film Classification has agreed the film can have an 18 certificate. It said that granting the rating was something of a "minor landmark" after such a length of time.

The board said: "The board concluded that its portrayal of the hallucinogenic experience was unlikely to convince a modern viewer [to imitate it] and took account also of the film's depiction of the downside as well as the pleasure of drug use."

The 75-minute film has now been passed without any cuts. It was made two years before Nicholson, Fonda and Hopper teamed up again in the road movie classic Easy Rider.

In The Trip, Fonda plays a television commercial director who tires of smoking marijuana and decides to move on to more powerful drugs.

The film is widely known as the best cinematic depiction of an acid trip.

The cult movie was originally turned down for a cinema release in 1967 and then again for a video release in 1988. There have been special one-off screenings for which a certificate is not always needed, and it has been available to buy overseas.

MGM holds the rights to the film but when it will be given an official video or DVD release in Britain is not yet known.

Last month, Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer, the grisly horror film of one of America's most notorious mass murderers, Henry Lee Lucas, was finally passed for cinematic release. Its release was delayed by censors concerned at its harrowing depiction of rape and murder. The film, directed by John McNaughton in the early Eighties, starred Michael Rooker.

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