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Go Back   The Trek BBS > Star Trek Movies > Star Trek Movies I-X

Star Trek Movies I-X Discuss the first ten big screen outings in this forum!

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Old October 22 2012, 02:57 AM   #91
DWF
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Re: How did TMP get a G rating?

I have to wonder if the lateness of TMP is the reason for the "G" rating, since other movies like Disney's The Black Hole received a "PG" rating.
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Old October 23 2012, 01:50 PM   #92
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Re: How did TMP get a G rating?

DWF wrote: View Post
I have to wonder if the lateness of TMP is the reason for the "G" rating, since other movies like Disney's The Black Hole received a "PG" rating.
IIRC, they were deliberately aiming for a "G" because they knew that "Star Trek" had appeal with families. Hence, they didn't dwell on Deltan pheromones and Ilia's Oath of Celibacy, nor was there a lingering look at the transporter accident victims. The death/digitizing of the security guard was also trimmed early.
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Old October 23 2012, 02:52 PM   #93
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Re: How did TMP get a G rating?

^Whereas The Black Hole was deliberately aiming for a PG rating, since it was Disney's attempt to branch out into more adult fare.
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Old October 23 2012, 03:27 PM   #94
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Re: How did TMP get a G rating?

Then:

G: Everyone can see it
PG: Everyone can see it, might want to go with your kids
R: Kids shouldn't see this, but it's up to you
X: Bewbies

Now
G: This is a Disney movie
PG: This is a movie your older kids want to see.
PG-13: This is a movie your older kids want to see and the bare minimum of what would be funny to an adult
R: This movie has action
NC-17: Bewbies
X: Vintage bewbies
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Old October 23 2012, 04:24 PM   #95
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Re: How did TMP get a G rating?

"IIRC, they were deliberately aiming for a "G" because they knew that "Star Trek" had appeal with families. "

There's no way TMP was going to appeal to young kids. I was 9 when it came out and the cerebral plot was pushing it for me. The studio really made a mistake when they greenlit the script if that's what their intention was. Not only that, but the whole Deltan thing would have been pushing things for TV had they followed through with Phase II. TV standards and practice didn't start changing until the mid 80s, spearheaded by stuff like Married with Children.
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Old October 23 2012, 07:54 PM   #96
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Re: How did TMP get a G rating?

mos6507 wrote: View Post
"IIRC, they were deliberately aiming for a "G" because they knew that "Star Trek" had appeal with families. "

There's no way TMP was going to appeal to young kids. I was 9 when it came out and the cerebral plot was pushing it for me. The studio really made a mistake when they greenlit the script if that's what their intention was. Not only that, but the whole Deltan thing would have been pushing things for TV had they followed through with Phase II. TV standards and practice didn't start changing until the mid 80s, spearheaded by stuff like Married with Children.
I recall M*A*S*H being pretty racy for it's time, and often had pretty strong language for the time period. I remember hearing words like Bastard, G'Damnnit, Hell, maybe even a bitch or two and I was pretty shocked, because you just didn't hear words like that on Network Television unless it was a rare event
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Old October 23 2012, 08:03 PM   #97
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Re: How did TMP get a G rating?

The MASH movie was pretty sexual. the MASH TV series wasn't. It was implied that Hot Lips was banging around but it was very understated compared to the movie.

What passed for racy back then was "jiggle" TV such as Wonder Woman, Three's Company, and Charlie's Angels. But all that stuff was obscured by some sort of "it's part of the story" plausible deniability or layer upon layer of coded innuendo. Quite different from having frank discussions of sexual liaisons in and out of the bedroom which has now become routine in things like How I Met Your Mother or punch lines like "sperm dumpster" in Family Guy.
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Old October 23 2012, 09:41 PM   #98
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Re: How did TMP get a G rating?

mos6507 wrote: View Post
There's no way TMP was going to appeal to young kids. I was 9 when it came out and the cerebral plot was pushing it for me.
I don't mean all young kids. But Paramount's and Roddenberry's feedback from the conventions of the 70s was that whole families watched "Star Trek" together over a decade of early prime time repeats. It was essential that those fans would be able to attend a theatrical version.

Sure, lots of kids attended and were bored to death (same with many of their parents) but had they been excluded due to the film's rating, the negative publicity may have been disastrous.

Check out the tie-ins for ST:TMP: the first Mcdonald's "Happy Meals" themed boxes, plastic mugs and cereal bowls, kids' pajamas, plastic colouring cloths for the party table, water pistol TMP phasers, etc.
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Old October 23 2012, 09:51 PM   #99
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Re: How did TMP get a G rating?

I think what happened with Trek in general is that during reruns it was watched by young kids (myself included) even though it did not target that demographic. That explains TAS. Kids are more sophisticated than most adults give them credit for, beyond a certain age at least. When I was growing up I resented the way things like Superfriends talked down to kids. That sort of thing persisted through the 80s with stuff like He-Man which featured "moral" segments at the end. There's a sweet-spot for family entertainment that I think companies like Pixar wound up striking in which you can engage kids with a fully fledged storyline that neither talks down to them nor bores their parents. Even though TMP got a G, I don't think it hit that sweet spot, not just because of the philosophical aspects of V'Ger, but also because the characters lost the casual familial quality that they had in TOS. Certainly something like Trek IV was a family film, and was the highest grossing TOS film, right?
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Old October 24 2012, 12:10 AM   #100
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Re: How did TMP get a G rating?

mos6507 wrote: View Post
Certainly something like Trek IV was a family film, and was the highest grossing TOS film, right?
In raw numbers, yes, if you define "TOS" to exclude the Abrams interpretation. But corrected for inflation, TMP was actually the highest-grossing Trek film until the 2009 film broke all previous Trek box-office records. Although TMP came out at a time when movies stayed in theaters far longer, so if you correct for that, TVH might come out ahead. But TMP would still have a stronger showing than most of its successors. Maybe it had more audience appeal than you think.

Again, I think it's important to remember that in 1979, the G rating did not have the "kids' movie" connotation that it has today. It was used for films that were suitable for family viewing -- movies that didn't have anything parents might not want their kids to see, like sex scenes or gore, but were not necessarily aimed at children. That's the case with TMP. It was meant to be a sophisticated science fiction film with adult appeal; it was simply kept free of content that might make adults think they had to leave the kids with a sitter when they went to see it.
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Old October 24 2012, 12:16 AM   #101
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Re: How did TMP get a G rating?

Christopher wrote: View Post
TMP would still have a stronger showing than most of its successors. Maybe it had more audience appeal than you think.
Overall, I really admire TMP (especially the director's cut) although I realize it's not a crowd-pleaser the way Khan is. I think the reason it may have grossed the most (besides home video not being around back then) was the decade long pent-up demand for Trek to return from the dead. Same deal with Star Wars Episode I (although TMP is a far better movie than that piece of crap). I also think had Khan not had so much competition from things like E.T. and Poltergeist it would have made more money.

As far as the NET profit, TMP can't have been the best ROI for the studio because it cost the most (outside of Nemesis I guess). It's just that the investment was clearly paid back in reusing the models and sets over time in the sequels (and TNG for that matter). I remember reading an article in Starlog magazine after TMP with a news report indicating that a future Trek movie was "doubtful" due to the disappointing returns of TMP, so it's all about ROI, not grosses.
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Old October 24 2012, 12:22 AM   #102
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Re: How did TMP get a G rating?

mos6507 wrote: View Post
As far as the NET profit, TMP can't have been the best ROI for the studio because it cost the most (outside of Nemesis I guess).
Except the claims about TMP's huge budget are largely creative accounting, because Paramount folded in the costs of all the prior, aborted film and TV-revival efforts. Count just the cost of production for TMP itself -- and, okay, for Phase II, since that was more directly connected to the production than stuff like Planet of the Titans -- and the figures aren't so high.
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Old October 24 2012, 12:33 AM   #103
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Re: How did TMP get a G rating?

Obviously, the cost of the aborted productions figure in the high number, but the film was also very expensive for other reasons -- it was months behind schedule, which cost a pretty penny, and when the Abel effects didn't turn out, Paramount had to shell out a lot of extra overtime cash just to make the release date.
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Old October 24 2012, 12:48 AM   #104
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Re: How did TMP get a G rating?

Christopher wrote: View Post
Again, I think it's important to remember that in 1979, the G rating did not have the "kids' movie" connotation that it has today. It was used for films that were suitable for family viewing -- movies that didn't have anything parents might not want their kids to see, like sex scenes or gore, but were not necessarily aimed at children. That's the case with TMP. It was meant to be a sophisticated science fiction film with adult appeal; it was simply kept free of content that might make adults think they had to leave the kids with a sitter when they went to see it.
Exactly. Ninety percent of movies made before 1960 or so, including most musicals, comedies, adventure films, and so on, would be considered G-rated in that they didn't contain any questionable sex or violence or adult content.

When it came to scifi, TMP would be considered family-friendly compared to, say, the likes of WESTWORLD (robot prostitutes, massacres and violence), PLANET OF THE APES (blood, violence, and nudity), LOGAN'S RUN (sex, nudity), THE OMEGA MAN, SOYLENT GREEN, ROLLERBALL, and other films of the era.

STAR WARS and CLOSE ENCOUNTERS had somewhat reversed that trend by demonstrating the box office potential of more family-friendly sf.
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Old October 24 2012, 01:22 AM   #105
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Re: How did TMP get a G rating?

Christopher wrote: View Post
^Whereas The Black Hole was deliberately aiming for a PG rating, since it was Disney's attempt to branch out into more adult fare.
I thought about that too but as you pointed out there's several Damns and Hells used in TMP where there's only one of each in The Black Hole, so obviously there's more to the rating than language.
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