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Outlook on Rated “R” movies

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CENTURY THEATER. A common cinematic corporation. It represents the outlook on rated R movies in theaters.

CENTURY THEATER. A common cinematic corporation. It represents the outlook on rated R movies in theaters.

CENTURY THEATER. A common cinematic corporation. It represents the outlook on rated R movies in theaters.

Greta Thompson, Reporter

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The entertainment industry is one of today’s biggest influences on society. Their power affects all ages in negative and positive ways as well as impacts and defines our society’s morals and values.

The social guidelines are outlined by the cinematic ratings– NR, R, PG-13, PG, and G. These parameters are put in place to inform viewers of the content within the movie.

For the demographic between PG-13 and R (age 17 and older) herein lies the problem: underage movie-goers purchasing tickets to age appropriate films and sneaking into rated R movies. To tackle this issue, should the age parameters of rated R movies be lowered from 17 to 16 or raised to 18? The fact is, dropping the age for a rated R movie to 16 would increase ticket sales.

Many teenagers agree that R rated movies should permit 16-year-olds to attend. Freshman at Summerville Union High School Kamryn Pitcher said, “I’d say 16 because not all of [the movies] are like horribly bad, so you don’t have to take a parent.”

However, if the law was lowered to 16, it would not stop the problem with underage teens sneaking into the rated R movie. If peticular people are willing to break the law, they will no matter what age they are.

On the other hand, there are also many who believe that the age should, not just remain at 17, but increase to 18.
Sophomore Spencer Darr said, “18 probably cause rated R movies have stuff that underage people shouldn’t see, most of the time.”

Junior Jaron Johnston agreed. However, just because underage people “shouldn’t” watch some of the rated R movies, doesn’t mean they don’t. And when they were asked the honest question, would you wait to watch the rated R movie, they had very blunt answers. Pitcher said, “I’d watch them anyway.”

For some, the content makes a difference in the rated R film. Darr stated, “Probably not, I mean it depends on the movie.”

But there are other ways around sneaking into theaters. Jaron Johnston said, “probably not, I’d like just watch it online.”

Teens had a similar outlook on rated R movies, and to get a variety of opinion, Summerville High health teacher Mrs. Garcia said, “I don’t think that’s necessary, I don’t think they should change the movies but maybe classify them so we know why the movie is rated R.”

Mrs. Garcia continued to state her opinion on the content rather than the ratings themselves. She said, “violence is underplayed while the other content is overplayed and I think there is an issue with the content yes. Violence is so accepted and the other stuff is so bad…we’re almost numb to it.”

If our society is already “numb” to what we watch, could one difference in age actually make a change? Is any change possible? If so, will it benefit teens or be non-contributing? Darr said, “[changing the age] isn’t stopping anything.”

Because changing the age isn’t stopping teens from seeing what they want to watch, what could possibly help the situation? The only way to effectively keep underage viewers from watching rated R films lies in the hands of the theaters. It is their power that would prevent underage kids from going into rated R movies. But think about it; is it too late for our society to change?

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The Student News Site of Summerville High School
Outlook on Rated “R” movies