A parental advisory poster for the sci-fi thriller "Annihilation" is released. (Photo courtesy of China Film Co.)
The new science fiction thriller "Annihilation" has become the second film with parental advisory warning ever to reach Chinese cinemas.
The psychological sci-fi horror film, directed by Alex Garland and starring Natalie Portman, contains a number of bloody, violent and dark scenes. The movie tells the story of a group of military scientists searching for the truth inside a mysterious, isolated alien invasion zone on an alternate Earth overrun with mutating creatures. It is based on the novel with the same name by American author Jeff VanderMeer, which won the 2014 Nebula Award for Best Novel, beating out Chinese sci-fi writer Liu Cixin's "The Three-Body Problem."
The Chinese distributor of the film, China Film Co., Ltd., released a parent warning poster and trailer Thursday, advising that children and teenagers under the age of 17 should be accompanied by a guardian. China Film Co. also notified all Chinese theaters about the parental advisory weeks ago.
The X-Men franchise film "Logan" was the first film ever screened in China with a similar parental advisory.
On March 1, 2017, China's first film law took effect, with one article stipulating that films that contain "physically and mentally uncomfortable" content for underage audiences should have clear labels for parents. Since China doesn't have a film rating system, the article in the new law is one attempt to prevent children from being negatively affected in theaters. In past decades, various reports revealed that many careless parents took children to see violent films that scared children.