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MPAA Censorship - Research Paper Example

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MPAA is alternate to federal regulation of motion picture content by United States government. This is because America lagged behind other countries in implementing motion picture rating. After the desertion of Production Codes in the 1950s, (Acland, 2009) movies became explicit all in the name of expressing realism. The realism movement had its significant contribution to the film industry and disadvantages. Realism movement boasts of production of great and timeless movies like Psycho directed by Alfred Hitchcock. However, it also gave arise to low-budget films that became extremely graphic in their sexual and violence content. The brutal and vicious content of movies such as Straw Dogs directed by Sam Peckinpah startled and troubled most conservative Americans. Moreover, a sequence of movies released later buried the realism movement to its grave by their obscene content. Due to this, a form of regulation had to be established, resulting to the birth of Motion Picture Association of America. In addition, National Association of Theater Owners consented to implement uniform rating system to all the movies shown. The distributors and exhibitors would enforce the system (Sklar, 2009). . The MPAA rates movies according to their content. It assists consumers especially parents to select appropriate movies for their children in different age groups. MPAA works in association with major movie production studios in America like, Warner Brothers, Paramount Pictures, Universal Studio and many others. The core functions of this rating system body includes, control and of distribution of movies, fighting unlawful copying of films and managing film ratings (Balio, 2000). Submission of movies for rating should be voluntary. Despite this, some producers prefer not to submit their films for rating to avoid incurring losses. To reinforce the submission on movies MPAA has a de facto obligatory position in the film industry. Since independent films do not focus on entertainment but rather on the artistic and aesthetic values of a film, they do not submit their films to the rating system. Independent filmmakers argue that their films require no distribution since they already have an existing consumer base. Hence, submission of their films to the rating system incurs unnecessary expenditure. When it comes to the rating process, MPAA does not have publication of a standard requirement of words, actions, or exposed body parts that filmmakers should incorporate in their films to get PG-13 rating (Balio, 2000). If a film contains use of drugs and callous sexually derived words, it gets a PG-13 rating. However, if the film uses such words a couple of times it gets an R rating. After rating, a film, the members submit their verdict to the producer of the film. The producer has the will to re-edit the film or appeal to the Appeals Board of the rating system if the results are not satisfactory. To avoid wrangles during the rating process movie publishers state the desired MPAA rating with the movie producer. Some of the main rating categories MPAA uses to rate movie include- G— a film to that gets a G-rating should have mild humor. It should not have any form of crude language. There should be no nudity or sex scenes. Drug use and violence should not be present in the motion picture. PG— ...Show more
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Summary

MPAA Censorship Name Institution MPAA is an abbreviation for Motion Picture Association of America. Initially, MPAA started operating as Motion Picture Producers and Distributors Association of America. However, in the early 20th century, Joseph Breen founded the Hays Code (Acland, 2009)…
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