Friday, January 17, 2014

Valid Complaint

When Sharon, Chandra and I went to see Catching Fire with my newly turned 13-year-old niece Elizabeth and nearly 11-year-old niece Kate I was appalled with a couple of the movie trailers that showed before the movie began. Two of them were for R-rated movies, and I thought they were awfully inappropriate to show before Catching Fire (since that movie is really popular with younger kids). The trailers didn't really bother me too much (I guess that just shows how desensitized adults are) but the thought of my sweet nieces having their sensitive spirits exposed to curse words, violence and vulgarity made me squirm. Fortunately, I think a lot of what was portrayed went over their heads, but I still didn't like it because little kids often pick up more than you think.

I know that all of the trailers that show before movies are approved for "all audiences" by the Motion Picture Association of America, but sometimes I think the MPAA needs to have more discretion in the trailers they choose, especially if the movie being shown is popular with young audiences (like a movie that's based off of a book series that's popular with kids). I don't think the same movie trailers should be shown on every PG-13 rated movie because there's a big difference between a PG-13 rated movie like Catching Fire or Harry Potter and other PG-13 rated movies that have a lot of adult content. I hope that makes sense.
Just in case you live in another country and aren't familiar with the MPAA rating system 
I'm not the only person that's had a problem with questionable movie trailers. When I worked at the movie theater a common complaint parents would make is that they thought the trailers shown before the movie they saw were inappropriate for the ages of their children. Even though I often agreed, there was never anything I could do beyond offer an apology and give them the phone number to the main office since they were the ones that had the power to change which trailers were selected to play before the movies. Watching Catching Fire with my young nieces and cringing over some of the movie previews made me empathize with those parents in a way that I wasn't able to when I was a young manager of 18 or 19 years old.


Jackie said...

In the UK all trailers must be appropriate to the age rating of the film being shown. So they can show a trailer for a higher rated film but can only use content suitable for the lower rating.

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