Rated G For Guilty Essay

1646 words - 7 pages

Megan is the stereotypical high school cheerleader girl. Her boyfriend is the football team’s captain. Every girl in school envies her for having the perfect life, the perfect boyfriend. Except she is not who people think. In reality, she hates kissing her boyfriend because she is only attracted to girls. Her parents eventually realize to their dismay that their daughter might be lesbian. They decide to send Megan to a rehabilitation camp that converts its patients “back to heterosexuality.” Megan, thinking her parents are right, accepts to go. Ultimately, she realizes that she is simply attracted to women and there is no summer camp that would change that. The previous story was a film released in 1999 called “But I’m a Cheerleader.” This movie served as a critique not only about the perception of sexuality in society, but also about gender roles. Unfortunately, the film did not reach a wide audience because the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) initially gave it an NC-17 rating (No Children under 17 Allowed). This was a surprising decision since the movie had no violence, nudity or sexual content. In order to get an R rating, the director revealed that the MPAA asked her to cut down a scene in which two girls talk about giving oral sex to each other, thus proving that the homosexual content of the movie was the reason why it was given an NC-17 rating. Since the creation of the current film ratings, many controversies have emerged from the unfair treatment the MPAA has given to many films and their content. Simultaneously, they have been discriminating certain groups and endorsing wrong ideas to millions of moviegoers in America. The MPAA rating system must be eliminated because it delivers a faulty message to the American population.

The MPAA ratings' board has demonstrated a strong disdain against homosexual content in movies. This association has a history of giving harsher ratings to gay-themed movies even when the images on the film are neither strong nor explicit. Filmmakers have noted this discrimination, especially when comparing these films opposite to movies with heterosexual content. Such is the case as director Atom Egoyan’s film, “Where the Truth Lies” which was given an NC-17 rating, as noted by the director himself because it portrayed a sex scene between two female characters. This film was a financial failure at the box office since the vast majority of theaters do not show NC-17 films. Meanwhile, rated R movies with strong sexual content such as “American Pie” or “Sideways” are able to show a fully naked heterosexual couple having sex without any censorship. This is a clear example of how the MPAA is demonstrating a sexual orientation discrimination through their ratings. If it claims they do not, then board members should treat films with homosexual thematic with the same guidelines as it does to films with heterosexual content. Even if we take back the example of “But I’m a Cheerleader” in which there was not one...

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