Friday, April 8, 2011

Rated R

I used to be a good girl. 

I refused to watch rated R movies. 

Once I was at a sleepover, and all the girls put on Interview With A Vampire. I called my mom and she came to pick me up. 

Then another time I was hanging out with a bunch of friends. They all wanted to watch Speed. I begged and begged them to put on another show because rated R movies are bad. They made fun of me and told me that we were all going to watch it anyway. So I said a silent prayer, asking for help out of this horrible situation. And then a miracle happened, and this is the truth. For some unknown reason the disc wouldn't play. My friends tried for about 20 minutes to figure out the problem but we ended up watching City Slickers II. I decided that there were greater powers at work, encouraging me to stay away from evil rated R movies. Because what's worse than a rated R movie? 

I'll tell you what's worse.

A few months after my personal miracle. I stayed home and babysat my siblings so while my parents went to a movie. When they came home, I said, "What movie did you see?"

My parents were quiet for a minute, looked at each other, and then my dad said, "We didn't go to a movie, we just stayed in the car and made out the whole time."


I dry heaved all the way to my room. 

Then about a week later, my mom goes, "I have something to tell you, the other night when your dad said that we didn't go to a movie . . . well that wasn't true. We did go to a movie, we saw Braveheart." Then she started going on and on about what an incredible movie it was. I didn't really care about how great of a movie it was, but I decided one thing. If I had to choose between an image in my head of my parents making out, or one of them watching Braveheart. It was pretty darn obvious which one I'd choose. Maybe rated R movies weren't so bad after all. 

I ended up marrying a guy who took me to see Ronin on our first date. 

Since then I think a lot about rated R movies. Are they really the best standard? I can think of 10 rated R movies that everyone should see before they die. I can think of 10 rated R movies I wish I hadn't seen. I can think of 10 PG-13 movies that I'll never let my children watch. (Most of them came out of the 80's.)  I'm currently trying to come up with a formula to determine which rated R movies are really worth seeing. I know that if an R movie gets 90% or higher on Rotten Tomatoes, it's worth seeing. But I think there must be more to it than that. 

 I think if you want to keep smut out of your brain, no R movies is a pretty safe guideline. But I think I'm a better person because I've seen;

The Godfather
Saving Private Ryan
Schindler's List
Shawshank Redemption
The Hangover

I can think of a bunch of others but I think you get the point. Am I way off base here? 

Because of the mental association, to this day, I still can't watch Braveheart. And I've tried. 


sara said...

Huh, I used to think I never watched R-rated movies either but I've seen almost every one you mentioned in this post.

You're right though; that's why I like to be able to check those websites that review/rate movies and tell you exactly why it received the rating it did -- there are some truly awful PG-13's out there.

Superfit said...

I can see validity in your argument. . but really, are you better because of Hangover? Schindler's List maybe. . but you lost me there at the end. I'm going to go watch a Veggietale, you sinner.

Reynolds Rundown said...

okay, so superfit is actually me, Morgen--I didn't realize Daman was logged in. Sorry about that. But, I stand by my Hangover comment.

Angela Jensen said...

Morgen, The Hangover isn't what you think it is. It's clever, and the characters are well developed and it's a new genre of comedy. You should see it.

Momma Nielson said...

I get the whole association thing. I used to have a song I really liked until it was playing at a viewing as we were filing by the deceased. Ugh. PS, add Slumdog Millionaire to your list.

Talai said...

I agree. I usually stay away from rated R movies, but I'm also not going to say never. I would add The Pianist to your list.

It seems that if a movie is rated R for being sexually explicit then it is usually not worth giving it a second thought (hmmm, some relation to picturing your parent's making out?)

Oh, and I would add Braveheart to your list :)

camilla said...

Right when I started reading this I thought to myself, yeah I never watched rated R movies until I was 12 and mom and dad made me watch Braveheart. And told me some rated a R movies are ok to watch.

Carrie said...

The Hangover--still need to see that movie. You know I can't get enough of Zach ever since watching those awesome Ferns episodes in Oceanside...good times :)

Eliza said...

The first R-rated movie I saw was for FHE one night. I was probably 10 and my parents rented "Psycho." I remember pointing out the rating on the video box and my dad said "No way. It's not really rated R." And we watched it.

I didn't really have the guilt factor in high school and so I watched way too many slasher/thriller type movies which I am horrified to think about now. In general I don't watch R-rated movies or any movie that seems like it will have tasteless humor or overt sex or violence. In fact I hardly watch movies at all anymore--I really have to be excited about a movie to pay to see it. There are so many horrible movies out there, many of which might be halfway decent if they took out all the explicit sex stuff.

The most recent one I remember seeing which falls into your "makes you a better person" category was The King's Speech, which is a funny case in itself. You probably know a PG-13 version was released. I don't know why that bothered me but it did. The ONLY reason the original is rated R is that he uses "the F word" a few times in his speech practice. I thought it was a really great movie and would for sure recommend it to anyone. And actually, the "F word" scenes are I think pretty important to the story (he mouths it over and over during his actual speech, I don't know if they took that part out in the PG13 version).

My parents refused to watch it on principle, even though they will watch stuff like "Band of Brothers" which is loaded with bad language and gore--but because it is a TV show it doesn't have that magical MPAA rating. Now that there is a PG-13 version though, they will see The King's Speech. Maybe I should remind them about how we watched an R-rated slasher movie for Family Home Evening when I was in elementary school.

Matt and I have a handful of "Rs" in our collection which I didn't actually realize were "Rs" until pretty recently. The funny thing is that none of them fall into the "art film/improve your life" category. Planes, Trains and Automobiles; Rambo: First Blood; When Harry Met Sally; these are the kinds of movies I always think I should hide (or just get rid of) when YW come over to babysit lest I corrupt them. Or worse, disappoint them.

Eliza said...

(wow, long comment)