Rated R for Reality 

Rated G for General

Rated PG for Parental Guidance suggested

Rated PG-13 for

Rated R for Restricted

This week, I want to talk about a little movie rating call R.  So, when did you watch you’re first R movie?  How old were you?  Did your parents find out, or did they let you?  Did they care at all?  How much violence was in it?  How much cursing?  How much sex?  How much does it surprise you how like these movies can be to reality?  How much does it scare you that some of them hold the most important messages, yet we label them as restricted?

It has been a long held tradition throughout the world to shelter our children from all the nasty, terrible, horrendous things that life can offer up.

“We only do it to protect the children!” Right…So how are they suppose to survive in this harsh, unforgiving world if you have given them no exposure to it?  How do you expect them to learn to appreciate the good things and the alright things if you haven’t shown them the bad things and the horrible things?  Now, I’m not saying all R movies are holding important messages.   Comedy’s like Brides Maids, Spy, and Tedd are not what I would call realistic.  Neither are action films like the Die Hard series , or James Bond.  No one fucks that many people and manages to skip out on AIDs.  I’m taking more about documentaries, and some fantasy and science-fiction films like Pan’s Labyrinth.  It is a Spanish film set in the time of the Spanish civil war.  It follows the story of a young girl named Ophilia and a mysterious Labyrinth of life she must follow to return home and find herself.  It is probably one of the most cringe worthy movies out there, but it shows how destructive living in a world of war and civil unrest can be.

I also mentioned documentaries.  One that has caught my attention recently is called Amy.  Directed by Asif Kapadia, it follows the life of the one and only Amy Whinehouse.  She  was born in the suburbs of London.  A young Jewish girl with an incredible talent whose life fell apart when she entered the world of glamour and shining lights.   This is the extent of most peoples knowledge about Amy’s life.   Sure, there are rumors, but how many people actually knew Amy Whinehouse?  This is the issue with the press, media and how we look at people who live in a world of fame. We presume to know them better than anyone, yet the only thing we know is what the press puts out there.  It is a little known fact that Amy had bulimia nervosa . An eating disorder in which the effected victim after eating meals, will force their bodies to expel the food.  It is usually done by gagging one’s self with the end of a toothbrush, or anything that you can shove down your throat.  We only discovered this through the documentary and an interview with her brother and mother.  Her mom had passed it off as “just a phase.”  Yet, her brother Alex, thought otherwise.  After her death, he stated that her eating disorder had made her body weaker and that if she hadn’t have had it, she probably would have lived a little longer.

These are all sad facts and hard ones to hear, but they are part of someone’s, a real persons life.  If we want to teach our children to accept differences, be more kind, considerate and understanding in general, then we have to stop be so prudish about films like this.   We can’t hide under a rock–well, you could, but you wouldn’t know what to do once you came out.   The world needs to see this.  No matter how young, or old you are.  The world is a beautiful, complicated, bittersweet thing.  It’s high time that we start trying appreciate it and it’s people.

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