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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 24 2012, 01:33 AM   #106
Greg Cox
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Re: How did TMP get a G rating?

DWF wrote: View Post
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^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.
Well, Anthony Perkins gets skewered by a corkscrew, as I recall, which was probably violent enough to get them that PG-rating . . ..
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Old October 24 2012, 01:41 AM   #107
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Re: How did TMP get a G rating?

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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.
Although that was largely due to the Hays Code, which pretty much forced all movies to be suitable for family viewing. The MPAA rating system was instituted in the late '60s as a replacement for the Code, one that would allow for more adult movies to be made so long as they were labelled appropriately. A lot of movies made before the Code, in the '30s, could get a lot more adult.
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Old October 24 2012, 01:42 AM   #108
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Re: How did TMP get a G rating?

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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.
I briefly met Robert Wise at a sf convention many, many years ago. I remember him complaining that a big percentage of his budget had been spent before he even signed on to direct the movie.
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Old October 24 2012, 02:10 AM   #109
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Re: How did TMP get a G rating?

Greg Cox wrote: View Post
DWF wrote: View Post
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.
Well, Anthony Perkins gets skewered by a corkscrew, as I recall, which was probably violent enough to get them that PG-rating . . ..
It was hidden behind papers though and there was no blood, unlike Star Trek VI where there was the was threat of an "R" just for the floating blood during the assassination scene.
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Old October 24 2012, 02:10 AM   #110
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Re: How did TMP get a G rating?

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A lot of movies made before the Code, in the '30s, could get a lot more adult.
It's worth pointing out that the Production Code Administration did exist from 1930-1934. "Pre-code," somewhat confusingly, doesn't mean that the Code didn't exist -- it just wasn't as rigorously enforced during that four year period as it would be afterwards. There were still censors and movies couldn't get close to where they are today in terms of sex and violence.
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Old October 24 2012, 02:40 PM   #111
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Re: How did TMP get a G rating?

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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.
Most stations played it in early prime time, five nights per week. How is that not targeting that demographic?

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.
As I said, TMP wasn't aimed at kids, but it had to allow for whole families to attend. Gene Roddenberry said as much in a Lincoln Enterprises' newsletter, IIRC.
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Old October 24 2012, 02:59 PM   #112
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Re: How did TMP get a G rating?

Therin of Andor wrote: View Post
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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.
Most stations played it in early prime time, five nights per week. How is that not targeting that demographic?
I assume he's talking about the original intent of the show's makers, not the intent of the people who scheduled its reruns.
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Old October 24 2012, 03:04 PM   #113
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Re: How did TMP get a G rating?

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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.
Actually, home video was around, even in Australia. ST:TMP was one of my very first Betamax purchases in early 1981. Its US release on home video was October 1980.
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Old October 24 2012, 03:10 PM   #114
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Re: How did TMP get a G rating?

I think TMP is a film that's more impressive on the big screen than the small. It's such a cinematic experience, built around these big immersive visual/musical set pieces, and on the big screen that might've been enough to satisfy and intrigue audiences despite the weaknesses of the story, whereas on the small screen it wouldn't have had the same impact -- especially with the film-to-video transfer technology of the time that washed out the colors and made it look much more drab.
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Old October 24 2012, 03:34 PM   #115
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Re: How did TMP get a G rating?

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especially with the film-to-video transfer technology of the time that washed out the colors and made it look much more drab.
Ah, but the Australian PAL video version was... magnificent! More vibrant than the US NTSC version.
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Old October 24 2012, 06:21 PM   #116
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Re: How did TMP get a G rating?

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.
I agree with the end of your statement, but I remember quite distinctly that by the mid-1970s (and certainly by 1979) the G rating was almost always used either for Disney and other kid oriented movies, or revivals of older films (like Gone With the Wind). Even E.T. (released in '82) was given some off color dialogue to insure a PG, so not to scare off teenagers adverse to 'baby stuff'. The period when the G and X ratings were neutral was the late 1960s and early 1970s, hence serious films like Midnight Cowboy and Clockwork Orange getting X's. By the late 70s, the X rating (as well as the unofficial 'XXX') was reserved for pornography (most of which weren't even submitted to the MPAA for rating).

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Old October 24 2012, 07:51 PM   #117
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Re: How did TMP get a G rating?

Hmm, on second thought, I guess you're right. Now that I reflect on it, I remember that there was some controversy among the fans about TMP being saddled with a G rating, since it gave the impression that Paramount wasn't taking the film seriously enough. I'm surprised I forgot that.

Still, as discussed above, even in the late '70s there were still G-rated films with content that would never get in a G-rated film today, like Sinbad and the Eye of the Tiger. So the G rating was at least still somewhat broader then than it is today.
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Old October 24 2012, 11:39 PM   #118
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Re: How did TMP get a G rating?

IMHO, the introduction of the PG-13 rating in 1984 shifted the PG rating closer to G.
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Old October 25 2012, 12:05 AM   #119
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Re: How did TMP get a G rating?

Greg Cox wrote: View Post
STAR WARS and CLOSE ENCOUNTERS had somewhat reversed that trend by demonstrating the box office potential of more family-friendly sf.
Lucas was worried ANH getting a G rating would make the movie look uncool to teens, so he put in the burned bodies of Luke's uncle and aunt to get a PG rating.
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Old October 25 2012, 02:02 AM   #120
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Re: How did TMP get a G rating?

Dream wrote: View Post
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STAR WARS and CLOSE ENCOUNTERS had somewhat reversed that trend by demonstrating the box office potential of more family-friendly sf.
Lucas was worried ANH getting a G rating would make the movie look uncool to teens, so he put in the burned bodies of Luke's uncle and aunt to get a PG rating.
I don't have the book in front of me, but I believe J.W. Rinzler's The Making of Star Wars says the rating was the studio's decision (Fox). It was them, not Lucas, that ensured the PG-rating from the MPAA. Anyone who has the book care to check?
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