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Author Topic: Drugs in Movies
Da_Goat
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The other night, in an effort waste time, I went to the MPAA site. Under this section, one of the sentences caught my eye.
quote:
A PG-13 film is one which, in the view of the Rating Board, leaps beyond the boundaries of the PG rating in theme, violence, nudity, sensuality, language, or other contents, but does not quite fit within the restricted R category. Any drug use content will initially require at least a PG-13 rating. In effect, the PG-13 cautions parents with more stringency than usual to give special attention to this film before they allow their 12-year olds and younger to attend.
I noticed it said "drug use", not "drug abuse". So does that mean any drug use? I mean, if a movie shows somebody having a beer with his meal or poppin' a tylenol because she has a headache, it has to be at least PG 13? Or what if it is drug abuse, but it's shown in a negative light? Can somebody enlighten me on this?
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Dagonee
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I bet they mean use of illegal drugs. Just a guess.
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Storm Saxon
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Your confusion speaks to, to use the word of the hour, arbitrariness of the whole ratings system and how uninformative it really is.
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Jay
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True, but you can’t give out an aspirin at a public school
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newfoundlogic
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Tylenol does not count as a "drug," alcohol might, I can't remember a recent movie with drinking that wasn't at least PG-13. Of course, I think the ratings are get increasingly stringent. I remember when Disney didn't make movies that weren't all G, and that wasn't very long ago. Now it seems most animated kids movies are at least PG.
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mr_porteiro_head
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Definition of "drug".

Aspirin, Tyelonol, and alchohol definitely qualify.

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newfoundlogic
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MPH, they don't qualify for the MPAA's definition, as you can see from your link there are multiple definitions.
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Teshi
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I think they mean drugs as in illegally used drugs, not medication.

I assume that abuse of medication counts as illegal use of a drug. Alcahol probably doesn't count unless it is being consumed in vast amounts on screen which case the movie is probably going to be rated at least PG-13 anyway.

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Boothby171
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I once went to see a movie zonked on Benadryl. Does that count?
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Dagonee
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The remake of the "Parent Trap" had wine being drunk on screen, so clearly it's not any drinking that will tip it into PG-13 territory.

And there's no need to ask why I know this.

Dagonee

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The Silverblue Sun
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ain't it weird...

Bush abused Cocaine, Mariuana and Alcohol...

now he's the greatest President EVER!

Ray Charles abused Heroin,
he was one of the greatest musicians EVER!

Bill Gates Abused Marijuana and LSD,
one of the greatest Business men EVER!

Don't do drugs, you might be GREAT!

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Teshi
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Drugs do not a failiure make but they still suck.
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Fusiachi
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Speaking of drugs and movies, and maybe dragging a thread slightly off-topic...

Show your teenaged kids the film Requiem For A Dream, if you want to permanetly deter drug use.

It's such a raw, painful depiction of the culture of addiction. Definitely not PG-13.

[ February 14, 2005, 09:40 PM: Message edited by: Fusiachi ]

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Mabus
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I may be a little behind, but welcome to Hatrack, Fusiachi.
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Danzig
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Requiem for a Dream is overrated. It is not a raw, painful depiction of the culture of addiction, it is an overdone feature-length anti-drug commercial. If you want to scare your kid, Trainspotting is your best bet.

So if it is only illegal drugs that earn a PG-13 rating, can you make a movie showing a guy drinking cough syrup and smoking salvia?

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Fusiachi
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Trainspotting is almost certainly a better film-- it feels more 'complete'. I'd still argue, though, that Requiem is a more chilling piece. Maybe it is just a commercial. A commercial with a darn good soundtrack.

Of course, I suppose you could just teach your kids positive values, rather than trying to terrify them. Confounded media.

(Oh, and is "Danzig" a reference to Gdansk, or to the band? I'm kind of curious.)

[ February 14, 2005, 10:10 PM: Message edited by: Fusiachi ]

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Danzig
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Requiem tries too hard. I doubt the author of the book it was based on had any real experience with the scene. Irvine Welsh, the author of Trainspotting the novel obviously knows what the hell he is talking about. Trainspotting the movie scared me a lot more than Requiem did, because it was so realistic.

If you tried to teach your kids positive values in this culture, you would probably get CPS called on you. If you tell your children, "Cocaine and meth are both bad but if you pick one to use it should definitely be cocaine," it is easy for a teacher or pig to twist that into, "He told his kid to do cocaine!!!"

Edit: The band. I am the most evil singer in the entire world.

[ February 14, 2005, 10:17 PM: Message edited by: Danzig ]

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MyrddinFyre
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Requiem is a wonderful, artistic piece. It is NOT simply an overlength anti-drug commercial, I'm sorry that you missed the point of it. [/nerdy defense]
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Strider
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I love Requiem and Trainspotting. They are both up there on my list of favorite and best movies(the two categories are not the same). And I will tell you the author of Requiem(Hubert Selby Jr.) most definitely had experience with the scene he was writing about. Check out "Last Exit to Brooklyn".

Trainspotting may paint a picture of the scene better, but Requiem tops Trainspotting in the "raw emotion" area. Requiem, I believe, is a more powerful film.

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Kwea
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Trainspotting impressed me, and I saw ti by accident. I had heard about it, and felt no desire to ever see it, but I was watching late night movies while visiting my parents, and it had already begun. I was blown away by it, because it felt so real....I have known people who haev fallen into that scene, and they never came back, not for long. They would stop for a while, and be all proud of themselves, but 6 months later they were back at it, looking for another fix.

Not a fun movie, but it was very well done.

Kwea

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Danzig
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It takes more than a couple of cinematic tricks to be an artistic piece. I missed no point. Yes, it tried to be a wonderful, artistic piece, but it failed. It did not move me the first time I saw it (before I was doing the "naughty" drugs); it just pissed me off because the director was saying, "Look at me! Look at how much your life will be ruined if you even glance at these drugs! Look at how great a filmmaker I am!" It is a movie about addiction, but it is treats a real topic without realism.

As for raw emotion... well, maybe for someone who wants to say, "I told you so" to an addict Requiem has more, but for anyone peripheraly involved in the scene Trainspotting is far more powerful. Powerful films do not end with me thinking, "Heh, Jennifer Connely naked. Mmmm." Selby's experience did not translate well to film.

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MyrddinFyre
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You did miss the point. You see, it is different from Trainspotting in that the movie is not about drugs.
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Mike
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quote:
True, but you can’t give out an aspirin at a public school
Probably not a good idea to give out aspirin in schools: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reye%27s_syndrome (stupid ubb code links not working). But yeah, the zero tolerance drug policies are just dumb (at least in the way they've sometimes been applied).
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Farmgirl
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Watching Cheech and Chong was enough to make me not want to do drugs....

[Big Grin]

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Dagonee
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quote:
the zero tolerance drug policies are just dumb (at least in the way they've sometimes been applied).
That's the problem with them - they leave no room for applying them differently in different cases.

In the case of zero-tolerance, the way it's applied is the policy.

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thrak
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quote:
You did miss the point. You see, it is different from Trainspotting in that the movie is not about drugs.
Actually, Trainspotting is the movie that is not about drugs. The movie is about the depressing economic and social climate amoung the youth in Scotland. The drugs are nothing more than an escape.
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MyrddinFyre
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[Blushing]

Sorry.

(I've never seen it!)

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Strider
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quote:
You did miss the point. You see, it is different from Trainspotting in that the movie is not about drugs.
but this point is still valid. Because Requiem is about addiction, in all it's forms. Whether it's drugs, chocolates, television, getting back to that "happy" time, etc...that's why Requiem was so powerful. Though I agree, there was alot more going on in trainspotting other than heroin.
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Mike
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quote:
That's the problem with them - they leave no room for applying them differently in different cases.

In the case of zero-tolerance, the way it's applied is the policy.

True. Except that I'm willing to bet there are plenty of teachers and administrators who are willing to ignore a bottle of ibuprofen or the like, so the policy isn't actually being consistently applied. After all, when a kid is suspended for one of these violations it's news. I love overreactions. [Roll Eyes]
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