This is awesome. I was visiting the web site for Mann’s Theatres, when I read these truly heartwarming words on their locations page:
Children under 5 will not be admitted to “PG-13” OR “R” rated films
Bless their hearts. I can’t wait for other theatres (you listening, Cinemark?) to follow suit. And also, I’ve always preferred the British spelling of theatres.
In response to criticism (such as the documentary This Film Is Not Yet Rated) the Motion Picture Association of America and the National Association of Theater Owners are working to make their process more transparent. That’s good. They’re also going to offer a new warning to parents that some R-rated movies are unsuitable for children, even when accompanied by an adult. That’s utterly worthless, and the coward’s way out. See, the parents that bring children to movies loaded with violent and pornographic content aren’t clueless about the movie they’re about to see.
They’re just horrible parents.
I’m not talking about the parent that brings his 15 year old to The Last Kiss to find out there’s several sex scenes that the trailer didn’t even hint at. I’m talking about the mother who brings her 5 year olds to see The Cell. The parents who bring their pre-teens to Blade II. And the parents who complain because the theatre won’t let their 3 year old in for free to see The Exorcist! By the way, these are all real examples I’ve witnessed firsthand here in southern California. It happens all the time.
Roger Ebert has said about two films, “If this movie doesn’t get an NC-17 for violence, no movie ever will.” The films where Hannibal and The Passion of the Christ, and after seeing both I heartily agree. And yet they initially gave an NC-17 to Clerks for language! The MPAA just wants to soothe their aching conscience. These people live in the area of the country that I do, so they can’t be blind to their contributions to the delinquency of minors. I’m not for eschewing parental responsibility. But if we can do something, even a small gesture, to lessen the psychological damage these selfish parents will inflict on their children, shouldn’t we?
Tonight I had a horrible experience at Arclight Cinemas in Hollywood. A couple weeks ago I purchased 4 tickets to The 40 Year Old Virgin, to be followed by a Q&A with writer/director Judd Apatow (of Freeks & Geeks and Undeclared fame). My confirmation email very clearly states that all I need to do is bring the credit card I used to a box office agent to pick up my tickets. I go to customer service, and they can’t find any reservation connected to my credit card! I only use one card, no exceptions. Nothing connected to my name or phone number, either. Nothing they can do about it, and the show is sold out. Yeah, sold out with 4 empty seats! Bastards! And this is after sitting in traffic for 1.5 hours. I am sure they will not deal with this in any satisfactory way, and try to say it wasn’t their fault, or say, “Oops, sorry about that! Now please hang up, asshole.” I have found their web site to be a flakey piece of shit in the past, but I DEFINITELY got a confirmation this time. I fully admit I should have printed it out as insurance, but it also stated I had no need to do so (and I’ve had no problems in the past). Apologies again to Agents Hulagun and Doubledeuce, whose nights were also ruined.