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Mikhail Liebenstein

Film Ratings......and what is worse for kids

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So my kids (both boys) are 5 and 6, and I quite like to pick films that they will like that I have previously seen - so quite a bit of 1980s content.

Anyway, I have found they are quite ok with violence and I do let them watch films up to 12A, in fact I think people who are not parents would marvel at the amount of violent potential in your average 5 or 6 year old boy - I can fully understand how ISIS have managed to train kids of that age to be killers and actually society has been doing that for millennia.

What I find interesting though is the issue of sexual matters. We are just getting to the point that boys might like girls, but not anything more than that and I know they would not be ready for anything more than that.

So in looking at film certificates, I find it interesting to see what might be in the film that could be an issue.

You've got your Sorcery Warrior films like Krull, Hawk the Slayer which cruise in at PG.  Then you have things like Conan the Barbarian which somehow seems to have ratings between 12 and 15, but then there is that Sex Scene with Witch which I think would be disturbing to a kids at that age - may be that got cut from 12 version.   Anyway I wouldn't let them watch that yet.

Then you have army/actions films like Who Dares Wins, which gets an 18 Certificate; yes there is some violence and profanity, but not worse than my wife's driving.  But then something like Saving Private Ryan is  15.

What are you thoughts?

 

 

 

 

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IMO the concept of sex to a 5-6 (and out to the average 10-11) year old is just a weird thing*.  (I'm in no way advising this, but) if such a child did see something explicit they'd explain it away in their heads, like 'he was attacking her' or something.  Just today my 11 year old came in stating that one tortoise kept on trying to climb on top of the other and what should he do ('just leave them, they'll be fine').  He's had the mandated sex-ed, but he just doesn't look at the world in that way.  They'll understand holding hands, etc (but not why they'd do it) and kissing is just yuck (but like an aunt kissing on the cheek is yuck, nothing more).  The danger point comes soon for my son, where he suddenly'll understand what is going on (instinctively), and a 'bad' sex scene on a film might start to affect/influence how he felt about his own sexuality -- but there's nothing I can do about it as adolescents will explore sex with each other in their own ways.

Re. violence etc -- so long as it isn't too graphic youngish children seem to be able to cope -- think Tom and Jerry style violence...  From age 8 my son just loved the A-team -- he's seen more episodes than I have...

What my children really couldn't cope with (nightmares etc) was emotional turmoil.  Eg, dog running away in a film and the child owner crying -- even if the dog came back later, it would still haunt the kids.  So, 11 year old son can cope with the Star Wars films, but can't cope with ET as it is much more of an emotional ride.

So -- I ignore the ratings** and just work with what I think my kids will cope with.

[* one of my earliest recollections is seeing some soft-porn (I'd have been about 10) and examining it at length, thinking it was just a completely weird thing... putting it away, finding it again after about a year and being absolutely horrified at what i was seeing... then finding it again after another year and thinking I'd found gold.  In my head I can still see that original magazine as being about women dressing up as dinosaurs... why dinosaurs?  I was into dinosaurs and it was the only possible explanation for such weirdness. It remains for me an important lesson in the way we'll change our observation of the real world to match our internal world construct.  Not that women dressed as dinosaurs much (at all) when I was 10.]

[** or, actually, use them as a guide but don't follow them blindly.]

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7 hours ago, hotairmail said:

If you let them watch violent films, like Tom and Jerry, they might get the idea that they want to kill you.

If advertising didn't work, why would they spend so much on planting ideas?

Can't you find a film where the Uk voted Remain and everyone lived happily ever after?

Bravo!

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I don't really get the violence thing - kids are violent anyway with no need for films to provide them with ideas !!

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There used to be a TV series in a submarine that monsters were always somehow sneaking aboard, that used to terify me.

 

Seeing tom and jerry, and roadrunner these days, I am actually surprised how vioent they are. Not really like how I remember them.

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10 hours ago, Mikhail Liebenstein said:

You've got your Sorcery Warrior films like Krull, Hawk the Slayer which cruise in at PG.  Then you have things like Conan the Barbarian which somehow seems to have ratings between 12 and 15, but then there is that Sex Scene with Witch which I think would be disturbing to a kids at that age - may be that got cut from 12 version.   Anyway I wouldn't let them watch that yet.

...

What are you thoughts?

My thoughts are that you've mentioned two films with two of my favourite soundtracks - Conan the Barbarian and Krull, in the same paragraph.

As for thoughts on them, I'm not the best person to stick my oar in since I don't have kids, but there's that scene near the end of Krull where the guy gets slowly impaled on all those spikes. Not gory but a bit unpleasant. I'd have thought that the sex scene with the witch in Conan would go over a kid's head at that age, IIRC you don't see much so they probably wouldn't have much of a clue what's going on (there are a couple more where you see more but also more is implied - in Arnie's hilariously bad DVD commentary "I get laid a lot in this movie!")

When you say they're OK with violence is that really just with the more "bang, bad guy falls over" type that's glossed over or not?

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13 hours ago, buckers said:

Is Saving Private Ryan really a 15? I checked, you're right. I recall the first 20 minutes or so are properly shocking. I'm amazed.

Yes, in comparison Who Dares Wins is a jolly good Heroic British romp, but gets an 18. Must be lefty film censors with CND sympathies, or perhaps things were tighter in the 1980s.

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12 hours ago, Riedquat said:

My thoughts are that you've mentioned two films with two of my favourite soundtracks - Conan the Barbarian and Krull, in the same paragraph.

As for thoughts on them, I'm not the best person to stick my oar in since I don't have kids, but there's that scene near the end of Krull where the guy gets slowly impaled on all those spikes. Not gory but a bit unpleasant. I'd have thought that the sex scene with the witch in Conan would go over a kid's head at that age, IIRC you don't see much so they probably wouldn't have much of a clue what's going on (there are a couple more where you see more but also more is implied - in Arnie's hilariously bad DVD commentary "I get laid a lot in this movie!")

When you say they're OK with violence is that really just with the more "bang, bad guy falls over" type that's glossed over or not?

Heads, arms etc  cut off with lightsabers is perfectly acceptable to them. The eldest is totally obsessed with the lava battle at the end of Revenge of the Sith too. 

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For God sake dont take them to see any old Disney films like Snow White

They always scared the sh*t out of me as a child. ( nb - Snow White was originally given an A rating by the British Board of Censors in 1938)

In Bambi the deers Mother is rubbed out in reel one.

In Old Yeller the dog gets rabies and has to be shot

One suspects Disney hated kids and enjoyed traumatising them

 

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14 hours ago, buckers said:

Is Saving Private Ryan really a 15? I checked, you're right. I recall the first 20 minutes or so are properly shocking. I'm amazed.

The opening to that film is ******ing grim, really shocking as you say. 15 may be OK but borderline IMHO.

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Just now, jfk said:

The opening to that film is ******ing grim, really shocking as you say. 15 may be OK but borderline IMHO.

Forgot to add - the rest of the film is f*cking sh1t

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11 hours ago, Mikhail Liebenstein said:

Heads, arms etc  cut off with lightsabers is perfectly acceptable to them. The eldest is totally obsessed with the lava battle at the end of Revenge of the Sith too. 

There's something a little cartoonish about that though. As a kid all the people getting shot, arms cut off with lightsabres etc didn't bother me but I didn't like the bit where Han Solo cuts open that animal to shove Luke in to keep him warm. It wasn't give me nightmare territory or anything like that, but still.

I'd guess that there might be a young age where kids aren't actually bothered about much at all and it's later that they start getting bothered with it. Or about different things. Diced to pieces, fine, lost his mummy, bad stuff.

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