5 Movies that Proved MPAA's Movie Ratings Suck

Can parents rely on MPAA's R or PG-13 ratings as a guide whether to let their kids watch a movie?

No, according to David Chen of More Than Fine blog. He picked 5 movies released in 2007 to illustrate how the MPAA movie rating system is broken. Take, for instance, the gory animated movie Beowulf:

2. Beowulf
What it was rated: PG-13
What it should have been rated: R

Comments: Despite being animated, this movie features an Angelina Jolie that’s basically naked, a hideous monster that murders - often brutally - dozens of townspeople (for example, he tore one in two and chewed off another one's head, slowly), several impalings, a graphic dislocation of an arm, a graphic severing of an arm, and lots of gore in the slaying of the monsters featured. One character's family is burned alive, although this is only implied off screen. I went to see it in IMAX 3d (a great experience, by any stretch of the imagination) but was disappointed to find out that several families had brought infants in with them to see the film. As I saw Grendel's horrific visage barrel onto the screen, a prelude to his murderous rampage, I myself was on the edge of my seat and just a little frightened. I can't imagine the mental scars that these kids in the audience would have to bear. Beowulf 3D is what little kids' nightmares are made of.

Link - Thanks David!

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mental scars!? bull, granted im not promoting violence to children, but if the worst thing a kid has ever seen is some computer animated gore than hes gunna be just fine. and where is the personal responsibility here? anyone who has read the book knows its gory. so my advice to you parents who complain that things are too violent for their children is, do some research before you let your kids see something. just cause the mpaa is a bunch of windbags and dont know haw to rate a thing doesnt mean you should blame then for allowing your kids to see something you disapprove of. (btw the mpaa is not a government agency its independently owned and operated)
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Yes, most kids over the age of say, 5, have heard the bads words. I was a sketch comedy actor when my sons were born and they saw my shows.I taught them the difference between hearing the words and the consequence of using them around their mother, their teachers, g-parents, etc. As to the issue of sex, just today the boys and I were watching a rerun of Scrubs and the word 'masturbate' was used. Both my 11 y.o. and my 8 y.o. asked 'What's that?' Chicken that I was, I dodged it by redirecting. Keep in mind, I had the sex talk with my oldest about 18 mos. ago, but I skipped that part. Don't think he's figured out his Feel Goods yet, and honestly I'm not certain about 'teaching' him. I'm not a prude, but I do believe that we are all only children once, and only for a small percentage of our lives, so why rush adulthood? I give them info that will protect them, but I try not to enable them.

As to -13 vs. R ratings, my only concern is the nightmare issue. Both boys recently watched the Lord of The Rings set with me, and there were no problems. My ex, however, took them to see I Am Legend, and my 8 y.o. got the heebies.

With movies as with mature video games, I just think kids should not be exposed too soon: innocence is so easily lost and can never be recovered.

peach y'all
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I agree that the English system is much clearer than the American one, but that doesn't mean it's perfect. There are still problems with rating (the BBFC seems to be more lenient towards sexual content and drug abuse but stricter towards violence and horror). For example, we had the same problem with Pirates of the Caribbean, and films in a series tend to all get the same rating no matter what the individual content (like with the Bond films; Casino Royale contained torture and brutal violence but it was still a 12 because that was the certificate of most of the previous films).
Also, I think in general film companies will allow a lot more violence if it is in a historical context, because somehow that makes it okay. Saving Private Ryan was probably the most brutal and traumatic films I've seen in terms of impact, yet it was only a 15. I've seen quite a few 18s which aren't half as bad as some "historical" 15s. I don't think that an eduational context makes something less traumatic (in fact because it actually happened it could be argued that it's MORE traumatic).
Maybe there should be a system like there is on DVD cases (don't know if you have this in America) where the content of the film is explained (violent content, sex/nudity, language etc.) for cinemas too. It's a lot more helpful than a blanket age limit.
Also ratings for games should be rethought out too. They're usually wrong, and the PEGI ratings don't count for much either.
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The note about seeing the film at an Imax is interesting. There was a film a while ago (a Spiderman film maybe) where the British Board of Film Classification gave the Imax copies a higher rating than the regular cinema copies on the reasoning that violence etc had a far greater impact on an Imax size screen.
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I'm with David. It's rare to see an epic, action, sci-fi, or fantasy type movie without some retard in the theatre with a row full of little kids. This happens even at the late (~10pm) showings. Regretably, trash has no conscience or shame, so you can't even tell them off. Pelting them with ice is the best course.
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