How did TMP get a G rating?

Discussion in 'Star Trek Movies I-X' started by t_smitts, Sep 21, 2012.

  1. t_smitts

    t_smitts Captain Captain

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    I'm aware there was no PG-13 rating at the time, and I don't recall what the language content was (did McCoy not say "dammit!" once?), but one would think that gruesome transporter accident alone would make it a PG.
     
  2. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Ratings today are considerably "deflated" from where they were in the '70s, as the G rating has become box-office death and even kid-oriented movies seek PG ratings. There was a time when a PG-rated movie could actually have nudity in it, as in Clash of the Titans, because at the time it was perceived as an older-skewing rating than it is now. I daresay it was the "deflation" of the PG rating that made it necessary to create the PG-13 rating for edgier films. Indeed, even some G-rated movies had nudity and sexual content back then; to quote TV Tropes:
    So at the time, the G rating was seen more as a "family" rating than strictly a "tiny children only" rating -- closer to how we see PG today. After all, the G stands for "general audiences."

    As for language, according to the transcript, there are three occurrences of "hell" (more times than it was used as a profanity in the entirety of TOS) and four of "damn/ed."
     
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2012
  3. 22 Stars

    22 Stars Commodore Commodore

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    It should be noted that subtle changes in the ST:TMP Director's Edition earn it a modern PG rating.
     
  4. Redfern

    Redfern Commodore Commodore

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    Well, to be fair, we didn't see the results of that transporter accident...but that "shriek"! BRRRRR!!!!! I don't know how they did it, but something about that sound worked its way to the fear centers of my reptilian "hind brain" to TOTALLY freak me out! Even today as I'm nearing my 50th birthday, I will mute the sound when it reaches that moment in the film. Strange as this may read, I find that "scream" far more unnerving than the chest bursting sequence in "Alien"!

    That sound for me warrants an "R" rating!

    Sincerely,

    Bill
     
  5. Data Holmes

    Data Holmes Admiral Admiral

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    Ratings are fucked up and carry no real meaning for movies today. They've boiled down to nothing more than another segment of the marketing of a film.

    The system as it currently exists needs to be tossed, the MPAA needs to be taken out, and a proper content based rating system like the one used for TV programs needs to be installed.


    TMP DE had to be resubmitted to the MPAA for ratings in order for it to be shown in theaters/sold on DVD as a rated film and not an unrated cut of a rated film.

    This was a clear example of how arbitrary and pointless the ratings are, and how as Christopher so well put above, has become deflated.
     
  6. MacLeod

    MacLeod Admiral Admiral

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    In the UK ST:TMP DE got a U (Universal) rating which I think is the same as the original cut got.

    U in the UK is the lowest rating a film can get (U, PG, 12A, 12, 15, 18. NB 12A is for cinema only)
     
  7. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    One reason cited for the DE's PG rating, IIRC, is that the different editing and sound mix on some of the sequences, such as the V'Ger plasma-bolt attack on the Enterprise, made them more intense and scary. Although it could just be that the MPAA panel that rated the DE consisted of different people than the ones who rated the '79 version, and some subjective judgment calls went a different way.
     
  8. MacLeod

    MacLeod Admiral Admiral

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    Some would say that ratings are subjective. What makes the difference between one rating and another, a single line or word at times or a single frame?
     
  9. Harvey

    Harvey Admiral Admiral

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    Of course the movie ratings system in the United States is subjective (no idea how it works overseas). There's no formula for how a rating is determined, just a board of MPAA raters who decide based on...well, however they feel (with an unhealthy dose of influence from the major studios based on whatever marketing decisions they have made).

    Kirby Dick's documentary This Film Is Not Yet Rated is probably the best source of information about the contemporary ratings system, although it is a few years old now (2006).
     
  10. CorporalCaptain

    CorporalCaptain Admiral Admiral

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    I agree with Redfern. The transporter accident cries are bloodcurdling.

    It's both the actress, who clearly did a magnificent job, and whatever filters they put the voice through.

    Curiously, the transporter accident resonates with the theme of Ilia and everything else scanned by V'Ger being turned into lifeless shadows of their former selves. It's a missed opportunity that nothing in the film suggests that any such resonance is actually intentional.
     
  11. TenLubak

    TenLubak Commander Red Shirt

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    Indeed! That awful shriek and distorted face was far more gruesome that anything else I can remember in Star Trek, let a lone a g movie. This bothered me when i rented this film as a child on VHS at maybe 12 years old, and it has also frightened, well maybe not frightened but at least made me very uncomfortable. I think its because the people are aware in transport and being put back together in a horribly wrong way. The line "Enterprise what got back didn't live long fortuinetly.." gave me a mental image of those melted looking people shimmering back on the spacedock transporter pad being re-assembled all mismatched and inside out; ; melted twisted faced locked in a emotional state of suprise, confusion, and horror as to what exactly was happening to them as they were gasping for air, which possibly could have been impossible in that state. Being put back together wrong at the molecular level It seems a worse death than just being lost in transport.

    The sound along with the image in my own mind, even thought it appears nowhere on screen, still it appears, is very scary indeed!
     
  12. Admiral_Sisko

    Admiral_Sisko Lieutenant Commander

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    It's interesting that I should see this, because I was just reading Memory's Alpha's article about the late Commander Sonak, who perished in that accident. It was mentioned in the TMP novelization that the transporter accident actually inverted the bodies of Sonak and Admiral Lori Ciana, so that their internal organs were actually outside of their bodies when they rematerialized at Starfleet Headquarters. Not exactly the view I'd want to have were I working the transporter console that day.
     
  13. Therin of Andor

    Therin of Andor Admiral Admiral

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    For "Jaws 2", it came down to bodycount. Billy Van Zandt (TMP's Rhaandarite bridge ensign) had to film two endings for his character: eaten by the shark and safely reaching the rocks. His was the crucial death that would have tipped the movie into an "R" rating, box office suicide for the teen date movie it was created to be.
     
    Last edited: Sep 22, 2012
  14. sonak

    sonak Vice Admiral Admiral

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    well, in the U.S., horrific and graphic violence is considered to be not nearly as big of a deal as a flash of boob, butt, or the dreaded full frontal nudity. It's kind of a joke of a system.
     
  15. Therin of Andor

    Therin of Andor Admiral Admiral

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    I think everything combines to tell us: space travel is both exciting and very, very dangerous. Humanity will prevail. And can technology be trusted.

    The resonance is there. And intentional. I seem to recall many mentions in the articles of the day mentioning Director Robert Wise's vision for the future portrayed by the movie. "The Andromeda Strain" is eerily similar in many ways. It's partly why he was chosen for the job.
     
  16. CorporalCaptain

    CorporalCaptain Admiral Admiral

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    I wasn't speaking just of danger in the abstract, or of the fallibility of technology, so I'm not convinced that I was sufficiently clear in what I was referring to.

    The Andromeda Strain is one my favorite science fiction movies. The Day the Earth Stood Still is great fun, too. I'd watch a double feature of both of them back to back ten times over before sitting through the entirety of TMP once, anymore, especially the DE, although parts of TMP are magnificent, and I rewatch them all the time (transporter accident included).
     
  17. Therin of Andor

    Therin of Andor Admiral Admiral

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    So how blatant did you want the message to be to make it seem more intentional?
     
  18. MacLeod

    MacLeod Admiral Admiral

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    I found this which goes through some of the differences between the BBFC (Uk) and MPAA (U) rating bodies.

    http://www.sbbfc.co.uk/mpaacomparison
     
  19. CorporalCaptain

    CorporalCaptain Admiral Admiral

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    What message do you think I'm talking about, but more importantly, what in the film intentionally conveys this message?
     
  20. Therin of Andor

    Therin of Andor Admiral Admiral

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    You suggested "It's a missed opportunity that nothing in the film suggests that any such resonance is actually intentional", so I'm seeking clarification as to what you meant.

    Surely the director's choices intentionally convey a film's messages.