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20 Why aren't there more G-rated movies released?




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This article is from the rec.arts.movies.current-films FAQ, by Evelyn C. Leeper evelynleeper@geocities.com with numerous contributions by others.

20 Why aren't there more G-rated movies released?

[This was originally a response to someone complaining about the bad
language added to THE IRON GIANT which made it PG. If anyone wants to
write a more concise or general response on this, please do.]

As many people have pointed out, no matter how much parents say they
*want* G-rated films, they just don't take their children to them
(unless the film is from Disney). The IMDB lists 32 theatrical films
in 1999 rated G, including THE BUENA VISTA SOCIAL CLUB, THE WINSLOW
BOY and THE STRAIGHT STORY. The successful ones were TOY STORY 2 and
TARZAN--both Disney.

And I wouldn't trust the rating too much. I think that THE IRON GIANT
is much better--from every standpoint--for a very young child to watch
than THE HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME, in spite of the latter's "G" rating.
(Which, by the way, is something that made everyone ask, "What was the
MPAA thinking?!!")

It's in some ways a vicious circle. If parents can't/don't trust the
ratings, they are forced to preview all the films. Since it's too
expensive to do this in the theaters, they wait for the videos, then
preview it one night and show it the next.

I'm not sure what the "cut-off" age between G and PG is, but most
children below that age probably don't have a long enough attention
span or social skills for a theater, which is another reason parents
prefer videos.

*If* the MPAA were at least consistent, G-rated films *might* have a
better chance in the theaters, but as long as something like THE
HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME gets a G, they won't be trusted. (And their
ratings at the other end of the scale are equally bizarre.)

For that matter, consider BABE: no bad language, but Babe's mother gets
carted off to the slaughterhouse at the beginning in a scene that could
easily be very scary for young children. And then there's the mad
dog....

(BABE, by the way, is one of the few non-Disney G-rated films that has
been successful.)

With the new policy of requiring ads to carry explanations of why a
film got a "PG", "PG-13", or "R" rating, there may be some
improvement.

 

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