I was just reading an article on my favorite Harry Potter website about Warner Brothers allegedly rating the upcoming Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince only PG. Everyone was up in arms about this and it really made me think.
Does anyone remember the MPAA rating system of yesteryear when PG and PG-13 flicks could (and often did) include swearing, drug use, nudity, and so on? I am a huge 80s movie geek and sometimes when I watch a PG-13 movie from the 80s with my daughter, I’m like, “Wait, was that in there 25 years ago?” because some of the content wouldn’t make it with a PG-13 rating nowadays. It would definitely get a hard R.
The whole rating system cracks me up really. A small group of people (not even made up of a representative sample of Americans; they’re mostly middle-upper class, white, late 40s or 50s women and men) judging what is appropriate for every age group. I’m still amazed this has worked for so many years. I mean honestly, it’s all totally subjective.
I never say I will or won’t let my daughter see something simply for its rating. I watch it then I judge whether it’s something suitable for her to watch. But then again I’m of the thinking, and I know I’m in the minority here, that my child does in fact have a brain with which she can evaluate and decide on her own the movies to watch. For the most part, she sticks with the G and PG rated flicks. However, there are other times she’ll see a movie rated PG-13 or R and love it. I catch a lot of crap from my family for this way of thinking, but it’s what I believe.
I don’t believe in blaming movies, music or the media for the problems in the world. It all comes down to good parenting. If your kid watches a movie that bothers them and doesn’t feel comfortable talking to you about it, then there’s a problem. But if my daughter sees something in a movie that scares her or disturbs her in some way, we talk about it. I feel it actually opens a lot more lines of communication than closes them as long as the parent has an open-mind and knows how to discuss topics with their children rather than dictate how their children should think or feel.
Just my two cents, as always.