PG Rating Isnt What It Used To Be

If there are any parents reading this who are thinking of taking their under-10 year olds to see the PG rated Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, please read the following from a ScreenIt.com review:

Rated PG, the film contains a handful of mild expletives; some non-explicit, but sexually related dialogue; one teen who sexually pursues her soccer coach nonstop until he finally can't resist anymore and they apparently have sex (off-camera, after some making out, and she feels empty afterwards)...

I have not read the books this movie is based on, nor am I likely to see the film (I'm not the target audience), but I did read in an interview with the author of the book series (Ann Brashares) that she made an effort to allude to any sexual issues in the books in the most oblique way possible.

It doesn't sound like it will be all that subtle in the movie version, which would be fine if it was rated PG-13 (The target audience for these books is 13-16 year old girls).

Gone are the days when you could just assume that a PG-rated movie is OK without doing any further research. I really believe that at some point parents will have to screen even G-rated movies before taking their kids to see them.

And whose fault is this? No, I don't just lay the blame at the foot of the studios, but it rests with the film ratings board. From FilmRatings.com:

Who gives movies their ratings?

Parents give the movies their ratings-men and women just like you. They are part of a specially designed committee called the film rating board of the Classification and Rating Administration. As a group they view each film and, after a group discussion, vote on its rating, making an educated estimate as to which rating most American parents would consider the most appropriate.

Ok, fine. Sounds good so far... although I still don't understand how the envelope continues to be pushed first on PG-13 films, and now apparently on PG films as well.

After further investigation:

The ratings are decided by a full-time Rating Board located in Los Angeles. There are 8-13 members of the Board who serve for periods of varying length.

Oh! Now it all makes sense! With apologies to parents in the state of California who are trying to raise their kids right, could the MPAA find a location from which to select a group of parents that could be less in touch with the rest of the country?

I suppose they could have assembled a group from the San Francisco Bay area...

Here's a suggestion: How about a group assembled from parents across the country? Figure out a way to do it... just send out screeners and then do a conference call. IMO that would get you a more representative cross section of parents countrywide.

Something needs to be changed, because the ratings system is obviously not working any more.

For more opinionated movie and TV industry rants visit ScreenRant.com.

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