08 June 2009

How to find movies the whole family can regret watching

I'm a shrill harpy* and don't tolerate naked women in my house. This means we miss out on a lot of REALLY AWESOME movies and shows. Alas.

It can be tricky figuring out what's safe to queue up, though, particularly if your tastes are kind of obscure, or if your husband is driven by nostalgia to revisit bizarre shows he watched on Saturday afternoon TV when he was a kid. He didn't realize they were made by the Beeb, which makes sure an ugly Brit nudie finds her way into everything. The poor girls got edited out by American censors back in the 80s, but not by Netflix. Ha ha ha ha ha. >:(

We've tried various online family movie reviews, but they tend to focus on new and popular releases and often don't have reviews of the unique crimes against filmography that for some reason people around here want to watch. A lot of them also have annoying formats (charts, colors, blah blah blah). So don't waste your time with those and head over to IMDB. Find your movie, scroll past the cast to Additional Details, and click on the parental advisory. They're user generated, and we've found even our weirdest whims efficiently assessed.

*My husband has never suggested this, but I get it from both females who "don't care" and "aren't that insecure," and males who "aren't watching it for that." If it's not rated X, it's not pornographic. Duh.


Megan said...

We've pretty much given up family movie time in our house. Our problem isn't so much nudity, as violence. I have a very sensitive three year old girl, and even most kids movies have more violence then she can handle. We tried watching Nemo and there were parts were she was literally shaking in my arms. We got through it so she could see that it all ended up OK, but she hasn't asked to watch it again.

I gave up watching any day time TV because the adds for the Prime time stuff had some very disturbing images. And you can forget the news. So we put the kids to bed fairly early and watch whatever Netflix we want, as long as its not too tense. My daughter is a lot like her Mommy :)

Christopher Gillespie said...

This may seem completely obvious. We've adopted two simple policies:
-No live TV unless it is sports and then only via TIVO to 30-sec skip the commercials.
-We don't show a movie to the kids unless we've seen it first. This rules out going to the theater ($$). We've been burned once or twice byu showing something without watching it first. I still remember watching "Die Hard" when I was 10 at a family member and "Silence of the Lambs" when I was 13. Traumatic stuff and completely unnecessary.

Marie said...

Even some G stuff has been too much for our "general audiences". My husband and I will not borrow (from the library) anything PG-13 or higher, but we even skip some of the PG scenes. Mostly now, we stick with old old movies (pre-50's) and factual stuff, like travel videos or animals. It's been a big change from my time in high school and college where my friends and I would watch whatever...

I don't mind using movies (we don't have any TV access) as a teaching tool or to spark conversation, but when the oldest of our children is 3, I don't think it's appropriate yet=)

Me said...

Wow, it's nice to know that some other family has the no naked chics rule too.

I get all those things you wrote--

"but I get it from both females who "don't care" and "aren't that insecure," and males who "aren't watching it for that."

from people and more and don't understand the reaction.

Anonymous said...

This was a good one I heard: "when my husband sees someone on tv w/o her clothes he says he just thinks of me." Oh dear.

Megan said...

hmmm. You guys raise some interesting points that I have been thinking about. Nudity in movies never bothered me much depending on how it was portrayed. Topless women on the beach in France... well yeah that's realistic. Women getting out of the shower, if it's necessary to the telling of a story, what the heck. Woman being raped or abused is NOT OK.

For me and my small children a naked woman is just a naked woman. Saying that I think I am the only naked woman my kids have ever seen, privacy is non existent with toddlers. However I have been married long enough to know that for my husband ( and son many years down the road) a naked woman would induce lust. So something that would not matter one way or the other for me could be harmful to him.

Defiantly something to think more on. Never thought of censoring thing for my husband;)

Rebekah said...

Violence doesn't bother me in the least (for me--we make sure the kids don't watch anything with problematic imagery or situations). Nudity is totally out around here (interestingly, this eliminated what was once my favorite movie, A Room With a View, one of the very rare movies with male nudity--I can honestly say I wasn't watching it for that! :D). Nudity is never "necessary" in a movie because movies are not necessary. If we expect our husbands to stay off French beaches and out of bathrooms where other women are showering, I don't know why we'd invite fabricated reproductions of stuff into our houses. Most honest dudes will tell you those images do not go quietly. And I would NEVER let my kids watch movies portraying nudity, which suggest that it's fine to look at any old woman naked (since it is nearly almost women) and sets them up for a lifetime of not flinching at Victoria's Secret ads and worse.

Megan said...

I really don't want to raise any hackles, or offend anyone. I'm really just exploring an idea and enjoying a conversation with people whos worldview is closer to mine then most. I actually have more problems with Victoria's Secret ads then nudity in general. I don't want a child who would look at those ads or even a Bratz doll and think for one minute that it's OK. On the other hand I don't want my child to think that things like breastfeeding or their own body is disgusting.

I think there is a problem in our society that womens bodies are seen as simply sex objects. Sometimes I think maybe desensitization could be the answer. Maybe if we saw naked women (real women, not ones filled with plastic)in non sexual situations it would help.

But then I don't think it is possible for a man to see a naked woman in a non sexual manner. Stupid sin! It makes everything so complicated.

Rebekah said...

No offense taken, Megan--but I don't think normalizing naked women is the solution (and again, why is it always women?). God gave us clothes as a direct result of sin. They cover our shame. Adam and Eve cover themselves even though they are man and wife and the only people on earth.

I think families are the appropriate context for children to learn about anatomy and for people to have the rare experience of seeing each other and being seen without shame.

Kelly said...

When you referred to the "Beeb" I was trying to figure out who/what you were talking about before I read the British context that followed it. Know what my first thought was? "Is that some new abbreviation for Beelzebub?" Oops :P Time for some Gordon Ramsey I guess. Too bad I can't stand watching programs where every other word is bleeped out.

Rebekah said...

:D It's been way too long since we had a new abbreviation for Beelzebub.