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show smoke in the movies and get an R rating? Yeah, right

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show smoke in the movies and get an R rating? Yeah, right

Old 02-24-04, 10:26 PM
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show smoke in the movies and get an R rating? Yeah, right

I heard about this movement a while ago, but first time i saw it in print. Some bullshit organization in San Francisco, publicmediacenter.org took out a full page in today's Variety. Its heading:

An R rating for smoking: why it's reasonable, effective, and inevitable.


They basicly feel that by issuing an R rating for any movie that shows smoking, it will save 62,000 kids from dying of smoking related illness.

yet its still cool to make violent and mean spirited films pg 13 while smoking, sexually explicit or real situations in a real life setting get an R. Nice

This seem laughably lame to anyone else?
Old 02-24-04, 10:28 PM
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Actually I think its a good idea. Smoking is far worse than those other things. At least profanity won't give you cancer.



Edited to add for those who need it.

Last edited by RyoHazuki; 02-25-04 at 08:02 AM.
Old 02-24-04, 11:06 PM
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Well films showing explicit drug use usually get an R rating, but then again drugs are illegal and smoking is not. What's next? Films that show people drinking getting an NC-17 rating?
Old 02-24-04, 11:07 PM
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oh, I didn't know that casablanca would now be an R rating?
Old 02-24-04, 11:08 PM
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I remember coming out of the movie theatre after watching "The Believers" with Martin Sheen (and "Lethal Weapon"). Both those movies featured smoking by the main heroes... I remember going out of the theatre and feeling confident and puffing away on my cigarette...

I clearly remember the Winston cigarette pack in "The Believers" waiting for Martin Sheen's character to pick it up (same brand I was smoking). This may sound silly but your subconscious picks it up and associates it with a feeling of comfort and assurance (as it did to me I guess).

In the movies when a guy is about to be executed by firing squad what does he ask for? A cigarette. In the old war movies when a wounded soldier is brought back the first thing his mates give him is a cigarette heh.

It is HIDDEN ADVERTISING and I believe the subconscious registers that .

Am I smoking now? Yes. But I've been gaining small victories on that vile weed and I'm not giving up.
Old 02-24-04, 11:16 PM
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"Rrrrrrrrrrated R!"
Old 02-24-04, 11:59 PM
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R rating for smoking? Pretty lame when you can walk down the street and see people smoking cigerettes. I suppose we should slap an R rating on walking around.

Are movies trying to advertise smoking? Well, more than likely not. Honestly, people smoke, that's life. Why is it so prevalant in Hollywood? Well, I imagine it has less to do with these conspiracy theories and more to do with the fact lots of people smoke in Hollywood. Not to mention the visual flair smoke provides in of itself. But I stick by the fact that...well...people smoke. And since lots of movies are about troubled people, criminals, forlorn artists, conflicted people, etc, you are going to continue to see people smoke in movies.
Old 02-25-04, 07:55 AM
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If they slap an "R" on new films being released, then they would almost certainly have to go back and re-rate older films. No way would that be practical or feasible. I'm not appreciative of being around smoke, or people that smoke, but this is too extreme. Just like PETA. Good message at heart, but lousy, wacko execution. These types of groups can be so offensive themselves, that a lot of people would take up smoking and wearing fur just in spite.
Old 02-25-04, 08:01 AM
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I love it when people try to push their morals and standards onto others. It's so keen.
Old 02-25-04, 10:10 AM
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I dunno. I think I'm on the fence on this. I mean come on, you have a rating to know what you are exposing your kids to in a film and the appeal of making smoking cool in films is a really big issue.

Here is the ad that was in yesterdays Daily variety:

AN R-Rating for smoking Why it's reasonable, effective, and inevitable.

Smoking appeared in 77% of movies rated pg-13 over the last five years. Research shows movies are the biggest pro-smoking unfluence on children today, more powerful than traditional tobacco advertising. 390,000 kids every year start smoking because of exposure to smoking on screen; as adults 100,000 of them will die from it. A common-sense change to Hollywood's rating system can cut this death toll by 60% or more.

Why it's time to rate smoking "r":
Research published last june in one of the world's leading medical journals confirms aa decade of findings: smoking in movies recruits over half of all new teenage smokers in the united states.
The effect of movie smoking on kids is clear and direct: The more they see, the more likely they are to start smoking. The teens most powerfully influenced are the children of non-smoking parents.
The good news: The less smoking teens see in the movies, the less likely they are to light that first cigarette.
Because kids get 62% of theirexposure to movie smoking from G, PG, and PG-13 movies. rating smoking "R" will reduce smoking rates proportionally.
Of the 390,000 kids each year who now start smoking because of what they see on screen, 100,000 a year will eventually die from tobacco-related disease.
Averting 62% of those deaths a year is equal to ending all U.S. deaths from drunk driving, AIDS, violent crime and illegal drugs. Worth doing? Well, yes.


HOLLYWOOD CAN DO IT TOMORROW.
it's no stretch to make the "R" cover smoking. It already covers other legal activities, while giving parents "cautionary advance warning" say the MPAA. When it rates 4-letter words "R" for example, the MPAA is distinguishing between talk appropriate for kids and speech intended for adult audiences.
It doesn't censor. It age-classifies. Treat smoking the same waay. If a studio decides it's vital for a character to smoke, it can accept an R rating just as it does now for cursing or removing a rbra- two legal activities that kill nobody at all.
That's no bar to creativity. Studios would still be free to make all the smoking films they want. Many smoking films are already rated R for other reasons. Kids could still see them, too, if their parents take them- that's what an R rating means. Real progress is when R takes meanings. Real progess is when R takes smoking out of the G, PG, PG-13 films that kids are exposed to most. In fact, only an R can keep smoking out of new youth-related movies, cut teen smoking rates and save 62,000 lives a year.

...

other junk.

find out more at

http://www.SMOKEFREEMOVIES.UCSF.EDU
Old 02-25-04, 10:19 AM
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Rated Arrrrrrrrrgh
Old 02-25-04, 10:20 AM
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for a supposedly forward thinking society, I find the purpose of the MPAA (and the FCC for that matter) and their mandating of restrictions and rules to be really anal and archiac.
Old 02-25-04, 10:22 AM
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It makes sense to me. I know that the latest racing video games don't have alcohol and tobacco advertising on the cars and tracks even though they are there in real life. It has to do with them being prohibited from selling anything with alcohol or tobacco advertising to minors. If they didn't remove or replace the ads with something else, they would have to put a mature rating on the video game. Why shouldn't the same reasoning apply to movies?
Old 02-25-04, 10:22 AM
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Originally posted by Giles
for a supposedly forward thinking society, I find the purpose of the MPAA (and the FCC for that matter) and their mandating of restrictions and rules to be really anal and archiac.
I disagree. I think that the MPAA's rating system accuratly represents the concerns of modern American parents. Whether you or I agree with those concerns is another matter entirely.
Old 02-25-04, 10:27 AM
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Remember, this isn't censorship, it's a rating system to warn parents about the content. You can choose to ignore the rating and not pay attention to it like I do. But to have the warning up there is worth it if it helps parents decide what they let the kids watch.
Old 02-25-04, 10:29 AM
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Originally posted by Groucho
I disagree. I think that the MPAA's rating system accuratly represents the concerns of modern American parents. Whether you or I agree with those concerns is another matter entirely.
I guess I am in the opinion that in today's society, parent's are doing less parenting and laying that responsibility on others. This is a perfect example of that.
Old 02-25-04, 10:33 AM
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Originally posted by Giles
I guess I am in the opinion that in today's society, parent's are doing less parenting and laying that responsibility on others. This is a perfect example of that.
I don't think it's laying the responsibility on others. It's a tool to help parent's decide what movies have content that is appropriate for their children. It's silly to think that parents should have to personally pre-screen every movie their child wants to see, and be left completley in the dark as to its content in the name of "responsible parenting."
Old 02-25-04, 10:35 AM
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But that is the purpose of the MPAA. to give a parents a heads up on the content of what a film has. If you have a warning, wouldn't you want to have it much clearer on what exactly the film has in it that might be a little offensive to those viewing?

say the rating box says "Rated R for tobacco use" and nothing else. Will it detour people from watching it? I doubt it. If anything it just gives a heads up. Something the MPAA is there to do.
Old 02-25-04, 10:50 AM
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I am just stating that its the sign of the times, that literally everthing has to get spelled out and explained to the point of overkill so as not to offend everyone. It's not just about parenting, it's the justification of the what the MPAA rating board (comprised of parents nonetheless) finds objectionable and likes to fingerpoint at.
Old 02-25-04, 10:52 AM
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"If anything it just gives a heads up. Something the MPAA is there to do."

That's naive. An R rating doesn't just give information: it actually reduces the number of people who can see the film (at least it does if the theatre owners are living up to their side of the bargain.) It has a profound economic effect on the movie.

And if you make every subject that *some* people considered offensive grounds for an R rating, 90% of all movies will be rated R.

Some people find violence offensive, for example, even if it's not graphic. Does that mean every movie containing violence MUST be rated R "just to give parents a heads up?"

If all you're interested in is giving parents information, there's no reason for the current ratings system at all. Just require an information box describing the content in ads and on a central website (e.g. "contains comic violence, suggestive dialogue, and smoking.")
Old 02-25-04, 11:04 AM
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Will an R rating limit the amount of people that will see a film? Yes, it will. Is that a bad thing? I really couldn't care less if it did. Most religious parents are still going to drag their childern to see passions of christ even though it's gore filled and violent. But should that be reason to give it a PG rating? Call it where it falls.

I realize that some people don't find smoking offensive and I really don't have anything against smokers, but I can see the point. If films glorify or make smoking look cool by having the lead puff one after killing a couple of baddies then yes, it can lead to the wrong influence on young minds. As for getting rid of the whole R,PG,PG-13, G ratings and just putting a sentence, that is silly. The letter rating gives you a general idea on the film. from there a descriptive information box is needed to go in deeper on why it's rated the way it is, but you need that letter box to get the attention. You need both in order to make it work.

Again, ratings really only come into play when you are a parent or under 17. I haven't worried about a rating since I turned 18. Why should I? And if you give me the whole "Well what if they dumb it down to get a wider rating" line I am under the belief that both sides create the myth. A PG-13 film can be just as good as a Rated R film. If a studio waters it down then take your beef to the producers and studio. The system is just there to call it what it is.
Old 02-25-04, 11:27 AM
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Besides, if a film that would have been PG-13 turns into R because of smoking the discriptive text would then say "Rated R for Tobacco use" If this does detour parents away from watching the film then hey, it's the choice made by the parent. I'm willing to bet that "rated R for smoking" as the only factor of the R rating wouldn't keep the parents away from it.
Old 02-25-04, 12:31 PM
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Originally posted by Groucho
I don't think it's laying the responsibility on others. It's a tool to help parent's decide what movies have content that is appropriate for their children. It's silly to think that parents should have to personally pre-screen every movie their child wants to see, and be left completley in the dark as to its content in the name of "responsible parenting."
The problem is that many, not all, parents leave their responsibility of parenting to every one else. When I grew up my parents had to pre-screen questionable movies before I was allowed to see them. If there was a movie in question that they did not want to see, I was S.O.L. Parents these days are lazy. They want to set little Johnny in front of the tube and do their own thing. Then they get upset when the programing that the child watches is not to their standards. They want the world to conform to their "needs". They want the MPAA or the FCC to sanatize the entertainment industry so that the don't have to put forth the effort to monitor what their children are doing.

The problem lies in the fact that there are millions of adults that shouldn't have to live in the Wally and Beaver world that the soccer moms want. I've been through my childhood and I have the right to view any content that I wish. Studios and theater owners will take a considerable hit if 2/3s of movies were rated R. This will result in less adult oriented content.

When I grew up parents took an active role in rasing their children. We were told that we couldn't do this or see that until we were older. Now we are grown, and the lazy ass parents these days say we can't do this or see that because of the children. It's total BS, it's out of control and the rest of you should be pissed.
Old 02-25-04, 12:44 PM
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As much hate that goes around for the MPAA I see them more as a way to sort out films then actually sanatize it. Sure a lot of studios bend over backwards to get a certain type of rating (say they want a PG-13) it may seem like it's the MPAA's fault and they are evil, but it's just the guidelines that we enforce on ourselves as a soceity.
Old 02-25-04, 01:03 PM
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