Sunday, July 26, 2009

The Movie Ratings Game: Trying to Everyone While Pleasing No One

Sort of like the unattainable goal of crowning a national collegiate football champion.

to July 25 New York Times article, "The Web is Pouncing on Hollywood's Ratings".

Excerpt: But the ratings system is coming under fresh attack via the Web, and that may make bigger changes inevitable, some Hollywood veterans fret. Studios count a movie’s rating as one of their primary marketing tools, and they worry that any recalibration would cut into their attendance — and profits.

The standard Hollywood ratings — G, PG, PG-13, R and NC-17 — must now compete with all manner of Internet-based ratings alternatives, some of which are gaining new traction through social networking tools.

Examples cited:

SceneSmoking.0rg (Smoking is bad for your health, but this website is bad for your eyes. What were they thinking with this design?) Things aren't going well here. Revenues are down, and the site was recently hacked. The Hurt Locker, which I saw on Friday, gets a "3" (out of 10) for sex/nudity (the sex is all talk and the nudity is of a man's chest), "8" for violence/gore (uh, what would you expect from a movie about the U.S. Army's Explosive Ordnance Disposal unit), and "10" for profanity (led by 73 utterances of "fuck-". Did one person do the counting or was it a group average?) Ratings from a Christian perspective, which explains why Fireproof, starring the TV-sitcom has-been Kirk Cameron, is a BIG fav. As you would expect, they hate Woody Allen's latest, Whatever Works. In fact, they really, REALLY hate it-- a Sally Field in smokin', sorehead reverse. (Subscription required for full reviews.)

No comments: