I read with interest the advice column in this morning's newspaper: Annie's Mailbox
Dear Annie: I'm livid. My 14-year-old daughter and her friends want to see a certain PG-13 movie on Saturday. But after I read the reviews, I will not allow her to go. Why does the film industry produce movies with words and scenes that are such filth?
We want movies for our children that have decent content and tell stories that have values and drama without us parents always having to worry that what will be said or shown is contrary to what we want our children exposed to. Can't some great producer or film school graduate figure that out? They would be surprised to know how many parents no longer allow their kids to go to the movies, and that means no money in their pockets.
Please, let's protect their innocence as long as possible before they have to see the world's ugliness passed off as entertainment. — Mom
Dear Mom: If all kids truly stayed away from PG-13 movies that contained too much violence, sex and foul language, change would come. Unfortunately, that's not what happens. Your daughter and her friends might stay home, but most kids don't.
We, too, wish Hollywood would stop pandering to our most base instincts, but as long as the money keeps coming in, that's what is going to be out there. The only movies guaranteed not to have such material are those rated G and PG. Beyond that, parents have to read reviews and use their best judgment.
I would like to add that as your children move into the teen years, train them to read the movie reviews themselves and help them make an educated decision if the movie is appropriate and in line with your family's media standards.
Our family uses the standards for appropriate media choices that are found in For the Strength of Youth Pamphlet:
...Choose wisely when using media because whatever you read, listen to, or look at has an effect on you...
...Satan uses media to deceive you by making what is wrong and evil look normal, humorous, or exciting. He tries to mislead you into thinking that breaking God’s commandments is acceptable and has no negative consequences for you or others. Do not attend, view, or participate in anything that is vulgar, immoral, violent, or pornographic in any way. Do not participate in anything that presents immorality or violence as acceptable. Have the courage to walk out of a movie, change your music, or turn off a computer, television, or mobile device if what you see or hear drives away the Spirit.
I have found that the website KidsInMind.com is a wonderful tool to use when deciding on whether or not it is appropriate to see a movie or not. They also have an app that I have downloaded to my ipad.
|This is the app picture that is on my ipad for Kids in Mind|
Kids In Mind gives you a way to determine exactly what content is in a movie and whether a movie is appropriate. Unlike the MPAA ratings (R, PG-13, PG, etc.) we do not assign an rating based on age.
We assign each film three distinct, category-specific ratings: one for SEX & NUDITY, one for VIOLENCE & GORE and one for PROFANITY.
Each rating is on a scale of zero to ten, depending on quantity (more F-words, for instance, will mean a higher Profanity rating, and so on) as well as context (especially when it comes to the categories of sex, nudity, violence and gore, since they are not as easily quantifiable as profanity).
Check it out.....And please pass the popcorn.