I got started last night, and I must continue it. A fire has been lit in me.
Movie ratings sometimes can be stupid. It’s no huge surprise to anyone, right? Sometimes even the theaters can be really bad too.
Example #1-Blue Valentine. This move was controversial for one reason and one reason only: an incredibly well-acted (but fake) oral sex scene. The movie famously was rated NC-17 at one point because of this scene. But moviegoers and studios protested and cried foul to the MPAA over it, and the rating was brought down to an R. I saw this movie a month or two back, and found the scene to not be offensive in any way.
As for cinemas, they can sometimes be prejudiced or just negligent.
When Brokeback Mountain came out, I was living in a small town (6,000 people lived there), and it was a pretty close-minded town. So no one was more shocked than I was when it came to town. And for this reason, I went to see it. I was 22 when it came to our cinema in March 2006, and of course I didn’t look it. The woman at the theater asked me for I.D., to which I replied with a surprised, “Okay, sure.” I know from personal experience previously that I have never once been carded at that theater seeing a movie for anyone over the age of 17. I personally want to believe that it was to ensure that the foolish teenagers didn’t get in and possibly learn that homosexuality is just fine between two extremely handsome ranchers. It was more likely the town was actually being proactive for once, and weren’t letting immature minds in to see it. Hell, they shouldn’t allow teenagers to see PG-13 movies in that cinema, but that’s an entirely different story altogether.
I took my baby sister (who was ten at the time) to see Wedding Crashers. They should have turned me away. Because there are BOOBS in that movie. Nothing to bat an eyelash at when you’re 22 like I was, but being there with your baby sister, and breasts are flashing like crazy for two minutes straight, you begin to cringe. I looked over at her, who had two sisters that were teenagers before she turned five, and she was less embarrassed than I was. I covered her eyes, and she laughed at me. Even though she’s about to turn 17 at the end of the month, I still have difficulty sitting in the same room with her watching True Blood or some movie with sex in it. Actually, Friends With Benefits was awkward for both of us. For me, it was because I had seen Justin Timberlake in person twice at ‘N SYNC concerts, so that’s a side of JT I never wanted to see (I was more a Lance or JC fan), and for her it was just uncomfortable.
And then there are times when the ratings fit the movies.
Shame is an obvious choice. It’s not the penis that gives the film the rating (although I am sure it had a hand in it–sorry, I couldn’t find a PC term), it’s the very frank sexual situations. Michael Fassbender’s character has a sexual addiction. He spends most of the movie having sex with random women and wanking to porn on his laptop at various points of the day or in the restrooms at his job. Clearly, you have to be an open-minded person to watch this film and not be turned off. If you get past the sex (as I stated last night), the film is an evocative piece on sexual addiction, trying to overcome your past, and live a normal life.
I might do a film review for tomorrow’s post. Not for Shame, but for some movie that I think people should see. And I will make sure Michael Fassbender is not in it. Although if I choose to review Jane Eyre, you can be assured it wasn’t for anything sexual, since Charlotte Bronte didn’t write about such things.