The MPAA movie rating system works up to a point in that it does give parents some idea of whether a movie might or might not be suitable for their children to see. Obviously there are movies that have many more curse words and nude scenes than some parents would like in a PG, but at least it's a start.
The current movie rating system is effective. Most people understand what it means and can use it in their movie watching decisions if they choose to. Parents can make decisions about what movies may or may not be appropriate for their children. Changing the current system would lead to confusion and uncertainty.
I do think the MPAA movie rating system is very effective. They look closely at each picture and take their time on deciding whether a specific film deserves a certain rating. I can't think of a better way to rate films, actually. Hopefully they don't change it any time soon.
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Kids really like to do things they are not supposed to. And about 90% of theaters will not stop the kids from buying a ticket to an R rated movie. The movie theaters just want money. The rating system is not effective at all. If anything it's hurting our society
It started off as a reasonable notion. It was an organization that sought to overthrow the censorship of the Hays Code and replace it with a voluntary rating system that could be a simple guide for parents. However, since then, their approach to rating movies has become more and more conservative. In 1968, Romeo and Juliet got a G rating, even though it featured nudity. Now, if a film even shows a woman's breasts, it gets an R. How do you explain that? It is totally ridiculous and puritanical. When released in 1969, the Wild Bunch received an R rating, but was re-rated to NC-17 in 1993. If you feature a kiss between a man and a woman in a movie today: rated G. Between two men or two women: R. It is corrupt and it is prejudiced. And, as a society, we constantly get more and more Victorian. In the 70's, streaking was a common thing, but now if someone did that they would be a "sex offender", something that should and was established solely for horrible crimes like rape and pedophilia. Now, all you have to do is urinate in public and your life is ruined forever. Even though it seldom happens, you can be convicted as a sex offender if you have sex before you are 18, even if both parties consent and are both 17. Also, if a woman exposes her breasts for any reason or if you take a picture of yourself naked or you read Playboy in a public place, you can get the "sex offender" label put on you. We think we've come a long way, but we are still very Victorian and have done nothing but regress. So the MPAA: started off good, but now it has gotten way out of control.
Not all parents are educated about the ratings system, and therefore, some movies will be mistaken as appropriate for children. They might even assume that anything animated is child-appropriate. Look again; it's not. Anyway, movies will do anything to protect from lawsuits, so the MPAA hinders all the movies' creativity.
Just like the first person said, society is rife with injustice and abuse. America has evolved into a manufacturer of protecting 'innocence,' and they seek to attain this by censoring many of our own entertainment mediums. When films such as Frozen and The Lego Movie are deemed PG, it marks a major inconsistency within the attitudes of Americans. Have we really reached that point where we have to rate children's films that contain worthy and thoughtful morals with a rating that used to be applied to classic action pieces such as Raiders of the Lost Ark and Star Wars? There are certain elements to films (i.E. Suggestive content, graphic nudity, etc.) that I agree should stay in the playing field of R rated films, but I feel like things such as language should be considered more lightly as these are themes that are evident in the real world and that people of all ages are exposed to.
Ostensibly the movie rating system is to preserve the moral uprightness of a society by not exposing children to inappropriate material. The problem is that the rating system creates a false sense of moral restraint, while the society itself is rife with corruption, violence, and abusive behavior. Such a rating system does not protect children from corrupting influences. It teaches them at a deep and unconscious level that the system is a fraud that must be tolerated and even championed.