Submitted by Zealousideal_Art2159 t3_zzbgrj in movies

In the 80s and 90s, the majority of the Disney and Don Bluth animated movies were given the "General Audiences" rating, despite most of them containing some rather dark scenes and themes, including onscreen death and blood. But nowadays, PG has just become the default for animated movies, with movies like Home on the Range, Uglydolls, Smurfs: The Lost Village, and most of the Illumination movies getting it despite being tamer than most G-Rated movies from the prior decades. It's gotten to the point that movies blatantly geared towards younger children end up getting it, such as Latte and the Magic Waterstone and Ice Princess Lily. It wouldn't bug me as much, except when a movie like Coraline or more recently, Turning Red, comes out, people complain that some material in them wasn't suitable for kids, as if that's not the literal meaning of PG.

I've heard the argument about studios deliberately avoiding the G-Rating due to the stigma of it being "just for kids", but...when did that happen? Being rated G didn't stop movies like Lion King or Finding Nemo from being huge successes, and even in the 2010s, the Toy Story 3 and 4 were rated G and made over a billion dollars. Most people wouldn't call those movies just for kids despite the G rating. At the very least, you'd think the more major studios wouldn't be as uncomfortable with the rating. But beyond that, the purpose of the MPAA ratings shouldn't be getting the most marketable rating, but the most accurate one. If your movie doesn't require parental supervision, it shouldn't get the rating, nor should studios try to force it to. All that does is reinforce the idea that G movies are "kids-only" flicks, when that's not what the rating means.

Ideally, the PG rating should be reserved for movies actually aimed at older kids, like most of the Laika movies, Next Gen, or The Sea Beast. But movies that just get the rating for "mild action" or "mild rude humor" should probably just be rated G. Most kids aren't gonna be harmed by a movie featuring slapstick violence or a brief dirty joke.



You must log in or register to comment.

TheRuinerJyrm t1_j2alnw2 wrote

There is no "accurate" rating in the first place; it's entirely arbitrary and the MPA is a joke.


moist-pouch t1_j2anxc7 wrote

The documentary about the MPAA was eye opening, but not surprising. When I met Adam Green, I told him I was damn lucky to see Hatchet 2 in Chicago when it actually got released with NC 17 rating nationally. It was taken out of theatres within a week and not sure how many, if any, mainstream movies have been given a wide release once given that rating of shame.


DROOPY1824 t1_j2b7kus wrote

What’s the title of this doc? Seems like it’s be a really interesting watch.


moist-pouch t1_j2b80a3 wrote

This Film is Not Yet Rated from 2006


DROOPY1824 t1_j2b8nk5 wrote



WillemDafoesHugeCock t1_j2cb9q4 wrote

It's very good, practically essential viewing for anyone interested in the "behind the scenes" of the entertainment industry, but be warned it has a lot of very explicit content. Not one to watch with an elderly relative, put it that way.


tread52 t1_j2blhz3 wrote

I agree I miss the the days when full frontal nudity was considered PG.


Great_Zarquon t1_j2bvkbj wrote

I read this entire post and still have no idea why tf OP cares what % of movies are assigned which letter


GatoradeNipples t1_j2eti02 wrote

Because it has a weirdly outsized effect on the American film industry (which is a disproportionately massive slice of the global film industry).

Studios factor in the whims of the MPAA heavily when deciding what movies to make and how to make them. Entire movies have just gotten shitcanned and sent back to the drawing board before filming because the script turned in wasn't going to hit the right MPAA rating. Entire genres die out or go to shit when the MPAA decides to tighten up on them (if you remember the plague of god-awful PG-13 horror movies in the 2000s, for example).

It's one of those things that feels goofy to care about, until you actually dig into it a little and realize it extremely isn't.


hiricinee t1_j2f1mem wrote

They have SOME set standards, like the F bomb rule is well known to many. I think there's a few other objective ones, but otherwise it's entirely made up ad hoc.


uniquecannon t1_j2ascsw wrote

Going back to a time when casual nudity was a thing in PG movies, before the PG-13 rating completely watered down anything outside of R


TimeWellWasted25 t1_j2b4k9l wrote

I remember watching Airplane fairly recently and being surprised that it was a PG film. There’s nudity and drug use in that one.

Compare that with some of the R movies that came out around that time and it’s just like…how did Airplane not get an R when this movie did?


MrBlahg t1_j2c58bj wrote

Jaws was PG


KingMario05 t1_j2cwzge wrote

Raiders of the Lost Ark, too. Somehow.


DBCOOPER888 t1_j2d0jhv wrote

That was always a weird one to me. A guy's heart is literally ripped out of his chest in graphic detail and he is burned alive.


ReasonableSail7589 t1_j2d2u2m wrote

That’s temple of doom, my guy. Granted that scene is a big reason the PG-13 rating exists


oldnick40 t1_j2ehfxi wrote

Yup! PG-13 was created in response to Temple of Doom and Gremlins in 1984 or so.


Like_Fahrenheit t1_j2ddm42 wrote

Star Wars too. That had a bloodied severed arm, charred corpses, implicit torture, explicit torture, genocide, and racism (leia calling chewie a walking carpet).


blue_27 t1_j2debj6 wrote

Are you seriously saying that Star Wars was too edgy for you?


Ocular_Username t1_j2eh8my wrote

Moana and Star Wars are both rated PG. But they are vastly different in terms of content, like Maui doesn’t choke a dude and crack bones and throw him into a wall.


CobRooter t1_j2ekj2a wrote

The ratings never cared about violence, only how many F words and titles were on.


Like_Fahrenheit t1_j2defe8 wrote

No. Just that today it probably wouldn't be rated pg imo. Maybe I’m wrong


blue_27 t1_j2dgyt8 wrote

I suppose it might get a PG-13 rating.

Your last point about "racism" is a bit of a stretch. Was it also racist when Han called him a "furball"?


Like_Fahrenheit t1_j2dh7zl wrote

I'll agree to that being a stretch. as to Han’s remark, eh they're good friends so I presume chewie would let it slide as a joke.


GatoradeNipples t1_j2eug3h wrote

I don't know why you're getting downvoted for this; ANH gets resubmitted every time they do a new edit of it, and gets the same PG every time, but they've had to trim the movie down to keep that PG.

We still don't know why exactly Greedo shoots first in the cantina in the newer edits, but one of the more smell-test-passing theories is that the MPAA griped about Han, a heroic character, gunning Greedo down in cold blood and threatened the movie with a PG-13 unless they changed it (and Lucas' apparent displeasure with having to make the change, with him going around wearing Han Shot First shirts in public, seems to indicate it wasn't his idea even if this isn't the case).

On top of that, while it's way, way more subtle, in the shot where Obi-Wan cuts that one alien's arm off, the current edits have the shot last for a much shorter amount of time (and, while I haven't actively checked against Harmy or 4K77, it seems to be a little zoomed in to hide the blood pool, with the blood being color-graded to be darker and more obviously alien). In the current edit, it's only on screen for about a second, whereas it's a pretty clear shot in every version up to at least 97 (the one I had on VHS as a kid).


3720-To-One t1_j2ezfoa wrote

That isn’t even in cold blood. Cold blood would be sneaking up and shooting a guy in the back.

Han was defending himself against someone pointing a gun in his face, trying to collect a bounty on his head, who for all he knew, could killed him at any moment.

It was self defense.


GatoradeNipples t1_j2f8o2d wrote

Sure, that's clearly how it's intended, but that's apparently not how the MPAA saw it.


jinxed_07 t1_j2d7ivn wrote

I think Airplane! doesn't really deserve an R rating since the nudity is just a blip of 5 seconds compared to the run time, and the alcohol/drug use is shown in a comedic light and also for brief periods of time, so there's not a compelling argument that the film promotes or glorifies it in any way


TimeWellWasted25 t1_j2dm3x0 wrote

I get where you’re coming from, I’m just surprised that it didn’t get an R by 70’s-80’s standards.

Like The Jerk, MASH, Student Bodies and Halloween all came out in the 70’s/early 80’s. They all got an R and they’re all tamer than Airplane, IMHO. And I’m sure there’s films that got an R in the 70’s/80’s just for brief shots of nudity or someone briefly smoking a joint.


prblydumass t1_j2bgmyd wrote

I think the most recent kids movie I've seen where the PG was warranted was Guillermo Del Torro's 'Pinocchio'. I mean, yikes! Before that though, I agree that it is basically a joke.


NorthernerWuwu t1_j2d2e7x wrote

I'm not sure Guillermo del Torro has ever done what I'd call exactly a kid's movie.


shewy92 t1_j2ecm9j wrote

Does movies he executive produced count like Kung Fu Panda 2&3?

> It was the early 2010s, when DreamWorks movies were starting to become darker and more daring, and del Toro wanted to push directors to try riskier, wilder things. “When I consulted on ‘How to Train Your Dragon’ they were debating what to do with the father character,” del Toro explained. “I said, ‘Kill him. That will give the entire movie a lot more gravitas.’” Likewise, “Puss in Boots” offed its villain, one of the heroes died halfway through “Rise of the Guardians”, and “Kung Fu Panda” included a panda massacre as a plot line.

LOL at the bold. "What should we do with the father?" "Just kill him"


moist-pouch t1_j2alpnx wrote

Article from 2019, but point is the same. Australian article, hence the M reference, but if I was a parent, I would be more inclined to a PG. G does carry that stigma of being limited in what comedy it can offer to an adult.

“The Toy Story movies have been G-rated but there’s no downside for Pixar making the likes of The Incredibles, Inside Out and Finding Dory PG. The higher rating suggests more sophisticated themes and jokes that will likely appeal to the parents who will be taking their kids. For Hollywood studios generally, the sweet spot for bigger family box office is PG to M, which indicates content that will play to just about everyone bar under-fives.”



TheKert t1_j2b66wh wrote

Absolutely everything about the ratings system is a complete joke


jstone233048 t1_j2by4df wrote

I have kids. I just go to IMDB and lookup what other countries rate the movie. I figure those countries governments are more functional and have ratings systems that aren’t as arbitrary and dumb as ours


Exploding_Antelope t1_j2chw35 wrote

Canada’s G/PG/14A/18A rating system is a lot better than the mess that’s going on in the states I find. To give an idea of what falls where in that system, my local big theatre has its currently running movies categorized like this:

G - Strange World, Puss in Boots

PG – Avatar, I Wanna Dance With Somebody, Black Panther, Black Adam, A Man Called Otto

14A – The Whale, Violent Night, M3gan

18A – Babylon


crapusername47 t1_j2cyy3z wrote

In addition to /u/Exploding_Antelope ’s suggestion of the Canadian system, the British Board of Film Classification’s system is usually pretty good.

  • Uc - suitable for everyone but particularly suitable for very young children.

  • U - Suitable for all audiences. The original Star Wars trilogy all received a U certificate.

  • PG - Suitable for all audiences but younger children should be accompanied by an adult. Back to the Future received a PG certificate.

  • 12A - Suitable for anyone above the age of 12. Children under 12 can view the film if accompanied by an adult. Every Marvel movie has received a 12A. This is pretty much the standard rating for all big blockbusters these days.

  • 15 - Not suitable for anyone under the age of 15. Deadpool received a 15. The equivalent of a R.

  • 18 - Not suitable for anyone under the age of 18. Robocop received a 18.

The R18 certificate also exists but no mainstream movie would ever be given one. There is also the E certificate but that’s for sports videos and other exempt content.


NorthernerWuwu t1_j2d2nzc wrote

Huh. Not that Robocop was exactly suitable for pre-teens or anything but I still wouldn't have thought it would be in the most-restricted category. Then again, I haven't seen it in ages.


crapusername47 t1_j2d411j wrote

Robocop predates the existence of the BBFC website so they don’t detail what exactly caused the decision but even a fraction of a second of 18-worthy content can cause a movie to receive that certificate.

The ED-209 scene and Murphy’s death are both scenes that would qualify.

The Terminator also received a 18 certificate with the BBFC also providing a list of cuts that could be made to reduce it to a 15. However, as time has gone on, the movie has been resubmitted and now carries a 15 certificate.

Star Wars: Episode II narrowly avoided going up to the old 12 certificate (nobody under the age of 12 permitted to attend) by trimming a fraction of a second where Obi-Wan headbutts Jango Fett.

You are able to resubmit a film multiple times and they eventually allowed the headbutt by the time the movie was released on Blu-Ray.


TIGHazard t1_j2d7fge wrote

> To mark the release of the reboot of Robocop, directed by Jose Padilha and classified 12A, we have opened the file on the original 1987 Paul Verhoeven-directed version.

> The BBFC first viewed the future of law enforcement in August 1987, and described it as "Iron Man meets The Six Million Dollar Man meets Judge Dredd."

> The violence and gore, in combination with scenes of drug use, pushed Robocop clearly into the 18 category in 1987. The strong comic book influence was recognised, as was the clear distinction between good and bad, with a hero "always on the side of right" giving the film "a firm moral base".

> The memorable scene in which Murphy (Peter Weller) meets his grisly death at the hands of Clarence Boddicker (Kurtwood Smith) and his crew is carefully considered, and one examiner notes that the "concentration on pain", plus the length of the scene, did give rise to thoughts of cuts. However, the clear delineation of heroes and villains, and the fact that Murphy 'survives' the attack, balances out the horror of the scene. There were also doubts about a later scene featuring the toxic, melting death of Antonowsky (Paul McCrane) as it seemed "nauseating" and "cruel". However, the gore was offset by going "so far as to become semi-comic". A scene of attempted rape is also noted, but its brevity combined with swift retribution, courtesy of Robocop, made the scene acceptable.

> Overall, the "slightly offbeat and tongue-in-cheek" tone of the film "serves to ameliorate the loving care and attention with which Verhoeven treats the violence." Robocop (1987) was passed 18 uncut for theatrical release, and all subsequent video, DVD and Blu-ray releases have been passed 18, uncut.

I love the BBFC, they even make the actual examiner reports available when they do these case studies.


shinobipopcorn t1_j2c7ump wrote

Finding Dory was tamer than Finding Nemo, but it got PG. Nemo had a G. Cars 3 that year got a G, and it had a near fatal wreck, beeped swearing, and a demo derby that could scare some young kids. Plus Mater being Mater.

The rating system is broken.


countgalcula t1_j2co9ln wrote

It's not really broken. It's just not obvious what's being considered to get a rating as it's going through a bunch of people. Also it depends on when it was released and what world events were going on. Going back and rerating them would be more confusing, what was the rating 10 years ago was valid 10 years ago but wouldn't be today.

They admit that they don't always get it right but it's better than no rating at all. Because people need flat numbers and ratings or else they aren't going to watch a movie period.

Specifically when it comes to the G rating, parents are going to watch a movie based on that alone. Otherwise what they'll do is ask around like "is this ok for my kid?" which lessens the chance of them actually seeing the movie.

I'd argue that people just aren't respecting animation the way they should which makes ratings more important. Then animations have to put itself in a box. It's not inherently the rating, in the end audiences dictate what ratings are for.


DustOfTheDesert t1_j2alz91 wrote

I agree with you.

Kids do understand slapstick but a lot of young kids don’t understand a dirty joke.

But parents who bring their kids into an anime movie which is rated R then gets mad at the theater for showing it are not the brightest.


Fthewigg t1_j2bgfsu wrote

I saw Big in the theaters. During the scene where she decides to stay overnight at his place, he responds “Ok, but I get to be on top” in reference to his bunk beds.

There was laughter and then a young child asking “what’s so funny?”


AgentUpright t1_j2bx6iq wrote

I also saw Big in theaters. I was old enough to know it was an adult joke, but not old enough to understand what it meant.


HardSteelRain t1_j2c7gi0 wrote

The first Star Trek film in 79 was the last big movie that I remember being rated G


impossible_apostle t1_j2b20wl wrote

While I love the original Aladdin, it ushered in the belief that kid's movies also have to include a bunch of jokes and references to appeal to adults (and which will go over kids' heads). This is why so many kid's films get PG ratings now, I think.


jizzmaster-zer0 t1_j2dd5x8 wrote

I’m fairly certain Army of Darkness got an R only because of the line ‘get the fuck out of my face’. That had pg-13 written all over it.


ih8meandu t1_j2dqql6 wrote

Beetlejuice has fuck in it and it's only pg


jizzmaster-zer0 t1_j2dqxdf wrote

nice fuckin model… yeah, thats goes to show this shit makes no sense


sherlock_jr t1_j2dica9 wrote

I teach middle school students and I am not allowed to show any movie that is not G rated.

We had a free day and my department head sent a reminder to not show anything that is not G rated and suggested Frozen because that is what she was showing. Frozen is PG…

We ended up showing a room of 13/14 year olds The Polar Express and that went really well /s

Also educational documentaries are almost all rated PG now, I remember one got that rating for “space explosions”


RollaCoastinPoopah t1_j2bxha2 wrote

I had this discussion with my 12yo a few weeks back about how there are jokes in PG movies that she will find funny and then there are also adult jokes in these movies that she won’t realise are there until she’s a bit older and has learned more about the world.


Korvun t1_j2cokf9 wrote

Ignoring the fact that the entire rating system, with no actual objective metrics, is a joke, I'm also sick of PG-13 being the industry standard for pretty much every movie. There isn't a single movie that's been released in the last 20 years that wouldn't have been better if they all shot for R ratings (yes, I know it's all about money).

I challenge anyone to name a movie that wasn't in some way hamstrung by the arbitrary rating system and companies aiming for a PG-13. Name a movie and I'll tell you how an R rating would have made it better.


KingMario05 t1_j2cx2ye wrote

...Alright. Dark Knight and The Batman.


Korvun t1_j2f97oa wrote

Both of those would have had more realistic violence and consequences. Man gets beat to a pulp with Batman's knuckle covers and barely looks like he has a broken nose? Come on now.


Sorry_Decision_2459 t1_j2czsmy wrote

Airplane! is rated PG and has a scene with exposed tits, the ratings are fairly arbitrary


Apostrophil t1_j2dburc wrote

The MPA is a religious organization. It’s process for rating and disputing ratings is a well documented farce.


ArcticFlower00 t1_j2b1e1q wrote

Kids aren't going to be harmed by full nudity or moderate violence either.

These ratings were never about protecting kids. They're about foolish parents being able to indulge their neuroses.


meldooy32 t1_j2c5vgr wrote

There’s truth to this. The amount of parents that brought their kids to see Deadpool (that was appropriately rated R)…OMG, there might as well not be a rating system at all. The Goonies had plenty of slapstick and inappropriate humor, and was rated PG. I would say The Golden Child has the same level of vulgarity, but was rated PG-13.


suzer2017 t1_j2d8m0i wrote

This and that is often "implied" in animated films rather than obvious. Plus, there are quite a few same-sex relationship characters that get past insanely conservative parents who can't even conceive of gay people but, for little kids, are just regular people they see on TV every day. What I mean is...little kids probably see all of what makes the PG rating on TV all the time (being parked in front of the screen by Grandma while Mommy works). However, the film-length animations that are funny (ones I have seen are Up and The Secret Life of Pets) have some mildly scary and overtly sad content.


darw1nf1sh t1_j2drsl0 wrote

Does anyone actually look at the rating of a movie? Where you can be PG13 but murder people, and R because you had 4 fucks instead of 3, or a single titty. PG or G or whatever, makes no difference and almost no one cares.


Viperbunny t1_j2ed5rs wrote

I don't go by ratings. My kids are 8 and 10. They have seen some PG13 movies, like super hero movies because there really isn't anything in there that is that bad. There are some PG movies that are more questionable. It comes down to common sense.


Pretend_Activity_211 t1_j2egdid wrote

Nah listen, listen. G movies, they far like babies. Now PG movies they far Lil kids, but there's a storyline. There's a point to watching it and a child may ask for certain things to be explained


CobRooter t1_j2ejyak wrote

Perhaps the PG rating, though a ridiculous system in the first place, has become more sensitive like the recent generations that view it?


dewayneestes t1_j2etj7t wrote

I just assume G is for Mormons and veggie tales.


KarasuFaust t1_j2ewnv9 wrote

I feel the opposite. For me a G rating should really be reserved for content that is appropriate for all ages. Things like Daniel Tiger, Sesame Street, Bluey, etc. A lot of modern animated movies have humor and situations that are best for 6/7 years old and up. I tried watching things like Monsters Inc, the Minions movies, secret life of pets, the new Addams family, and loads of other kids movies that are PG with kids younger than 6/7 and I think people forget how intense that stuff can be for the little ones. Small things like someone being mean or getting hurt can really upset them. I like knowing that G is probably safe.


Justice_Prince t1_j2cal8v wrote

We just need a new rating for Stupid Baby Movies, and then the rest can go back to being G


ArcticFlower00 t1_j2b179f wrote

You don't like them being good?

Because this just means they're getting good.