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This Film Is Not Yet Rated
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This Film Is Not Yet Rated More at IMDbPro »

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

Could have been better, still pretty good

Author: abfacebookab from United States
8 March 2011

This is a great look at how the films we see are rated. The MPAA it seems is bordering on the edge of censorship. I believe that the whole concept of an NC-17 is unnecessary. If a movie has that level of sex or violence it should really be up to the parents of the children who are going to see these movies whether or not to let them see it. An R rating requires that a person under the age of 17 has to have an adult with them, so its not like 6 year olds are going to be able to "wander" into a movie showing sex anyway. The film does not stress or explain thoroughly enough that there should be an alternate to the MPAA rating system, not implying that no movies should be rated, instead having a different system to rate them in. This probably would not have any if all effect on G or PG movies, and not all too much in PG 13 movies, it would mainly deal with the R vs NC-17 ratings. It is a real problem for film makers who include adult themes to make a work of art the way that they intend it to be. Also the film does spend waaaayyy too much time on their investigation and not enough time making a stronger case for their ideal rating system. That was the only thing that really bothered me.

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

This Film Is Not Yet Rated provides a compelling view of how the movie ratings system works

Author: tavm from Baton Rouge, La.
7 May 2010

Just watched this fascinating documentary of the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) by director Kirby Dick (What a name!) on DVD. He interviews several independent filmmakers about their troubles with the board on avoiding an NC-17. Among them: John Waters, Kevin Smith, and Matt Stone who provides a fascinating tale of the differences of dealing with the board as an independent filmmaker-Orgazmo-and a Major Studio one-South Park: Bigger, Longer, and Uncut. Mr. Dick also has himself filmed calling many of the members about this film and his own troubles. There's also some fascinating footage of a female detective he hires to find out the names of the board members and what she finds out about them. And then there's the stock footage of the ratings founder-the late Jack Valenti-that makes him look good and bad considering the surrounding scenes of the other interviewees and movie sequences. The entire thing is treated both humorously and seriously in a way that I'm sure there will be lots of discussion of just how influential this film is. So on that note, I highly recommend This Film Is Not Yet Rated. P.S. That scene of the leading character humping a pie in American Pie is from the unrated version, not the R-rated version that originally appeared in theatres.

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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

Satisfying middle finger to the MPAA

Author: Jonny_Numb from Hellfudge, Pennsylvania
25 July 2007

"This Film is Not Yet Rated" has a fine moderator in writer-director Kirby Dick, who comes across as a less imposing muckracker than Michael Moore, but no less cunning. His target is the Motion Picture Association of America (the MPAA), long the bastion of regulating the content of American films via the now-notorious ratings system; the focus is primarily on films and filmmakers who have had their work threatened with the commercially suicidal NC-17, tidbits regarding the incestuous relationship between the anonymous ratings board and the conglomerates that control the mass media, and a private investigator who, with the assistance of Dick's camera, finds out the identities of who is (was?) currently serving on the board. "This Film" is at its best when culling anecdotes from directors who have been "slapped" with the NC-17, and consequently forced to edit their work down for the more marketable R; Dick also gets good interview footage with film historians, critics, marketing heads, and former raters that bring considerable insight to the organization. That being said, "This Film" falters in its private-investigator subplot, which plays like a Michael Moore stunt writ large, and while coming to a payoff at the very end, brings the film to a halt every time it interrupts the directors' stories--with the intended effect of humanizing the subject through an outsider's eyes, it merely blunts the edge and comes across as heavy-handed. That being said, "This Film" is still a fun and very revealing documentary about, as Dick puts it, "much ado about nothing."

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

This Film Is Not Yet Rated

Author: Ted from United States
30 October 2010

The public typically assumes that the MPAA, responsible for rating all widely distributed films, is a sensible, lawful governmental agency accountable to consistent standards; a necessary, helpful avenue for informing parents and consumers. According to Kirby Dick's 2006 documentary This Film Is Not Yet Rated, we're wrong on every count.

This Film primarily focuses on the line between an R rating and an NC-17, positing that the difference between the two is more a matter of politics than fostering parental awareness. R-rated films are distributed widely, NC-17 films are not--the harsher rating is typically given to independent art-house fare, dependent more on tone than content. The MPAA--owned and operated by major studios--not only discourages but disallows any appeals to precedent, and cloaks its members in anonymity. Kirby's film gets a bit silly in its animated and investigative segments, but it comes solidly recommended for its content--the politics of distribution affect any serious film-goer, and the better informed we are the better. -TK 10/30/10

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Educational documentary to an overlooked subject..

Author: FatmanReviewing from United States
30 June 2010

Just as 2009's "Food, Inc." exposed the inner workings of America's corporate controlled food industry, "This Film Is Not Yet Rated" exposes the terrifying inner workings of the MPAA and how American medias (of all sorts, not just theatrical) are being controlled by a small group of people and corporations.

Something to be appreciated with this documentary is that, just like "Food, Inc." (I compare the two because they have similar agendas for different mediums) it takes a headstrong approach to a problem that not too many people think about. The rating system for our media has been around for over sixty years now and it's simply become so normal that nobody questions the way it works or how it's possibly very flawed. "This Film Is Not Yet Rated" also doesn't shy away from using frowned upon tactics in order to get the answers it wants the audience to see for themselves. While some may consider this trickery a bit unfair, I believe most should see it as a means to the end. A majority of people don't know what really goes in to the rating systems or how much controversy there is behind the progress; but they should. The amount of sexism and unjust actions were kept in secret before this documentary's release and for good reason. The documentary also briefly touches down on topics beyond the rating system and into territory such as piracy, the contradictions of MPAA policy, and how the rating appeal process filmmakers have to go through is shockingly unjust.

The direction of the film is a little bit choppy every now and then, and if you're not into documentaries you might find it overall a tad boring; especially if you're not familiar with the film industry. There's plenty of shocking interviews and humorous transitions to keep most entertained, I believe. Personally I found it extremely intriguing, very educational and quite disturbing at times. And after some research I discovered that the film doesn't lose it's educational value either, even after being almost six years old. All the information is still up- to-date and spot on. Also, if you're highly conservative I suggest staying clear of the film because there is an abundance of adult-themed, R-NC-17 rated clips from films ranging between 1970 and the 2000s; in order to help the filmmakers get their point across. Though I would also recommend trying to stomach these scenes because they aren't put in the documentary for lewd purposes; simply to make comparisons on unfair judgments made by the MPAA.

Overall this is a documentary I highly suggest seeing simply to update personal knowledge about a system that affects more than some may realize. Rather you're a conspiracy theorist or someone who simply enjoys learning about the inner workings of life, this is an important documentary to the world of film and to Americans in general. There's always a good chance you could walk away from the experience with a refreshed frame of mind or even an updated one. And again, like "Food, Inc.", even if you don't get anything from it, at least you learned something new.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Quintessential to any Film Lover or Modest Connoisseur

Author: moselekm from United States
2 May 2010

This is one of those rare 'hip' documentaries that doesn't blur any lines, edit rolls of film, or anything like that to the point that it only delivers the narrator's point of view. (Like many of the Michael Moore productions). Granted THIS FILM does edit reels and focus on the inconsistencies of the MPAA, but I am sure, no, POSITIVE, that the edits were made to save us all time on the garble and bull of the responses from much of the MPAA resistances.

The film takes place in 2004-2005 with Kirby Dick outlining the rise of Film and the rise of the MPAA. He does this extremely well, so much that you could never have heard of the MPAA or Rating System and become a pro within fifteen minutes of the film start. He then begins interviews with key directors to further enhance your outlook on what the MPAA really is and the inconsistencies of the Rating System. Including very very real proof. And for the most part the directors interviewed are veterans to Hollywood and are critically acclaimed; speaking out against the fascist state of the MPAA.

Like most if not all documentaries, the mood will always be to make you hate the opposition. And like so many others, this is against the Censoring in America. But it's not a cheap trick like BLAME THE PARENTS or anything like that. We don't need any more films on how we can blame parents. I believe we're all professionals at that. Instead this cuts deep at the MPAA. And it doesn't treat the MPAA as some single entity. Kirby Dick hires his OWN Private Eye (Who does an awesome job) to find out who the faceless figures are behind the clockwork.

Kirby uses quotes and citations from then CEO of MPAA and many of the figure heads or GUIDELINES and obliterates them with the existences of their contradictions. It's one of those documentaries that seems to hit on one thing and it opens several doors to other things, but Kirby only glimpses at these things, but stays on a steady line at the MPAA. (What I mean is; he will talk about studios vs independent films and how they are treated differently. He then exposes {not to any surprise} that the handful of studios own a great amount of media control and that those companies are owned by an even larger conglomerate with even more cultural and economic control.

If you want a movie you can kick back to, learn from, and get all riled up about then watch this. It most certainly will spurn conversations for weeks to come if you have movie loving friends.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Exposes new insights into the way the MPAA more or less censors our culture

Author: Movie_Muse_Reviews from IL, USA
26 January 2010

The American public is no stranger to the MPAA ratings system and its inherent flaws. Everyone has his or her own opinion about the level of censorship that goes on in Hollywood and what is appropriate for what age group and so on. But you don't really know what it's about until you watch Kirby Dick's documentary "This Film is Not Yet Rated."

Anyone who pays more than surface-level attention to the goings on in the film industry knows an NC-17 rating is a death sentence for a film. You kill off advertising possibilities, your film won't get played in as many theaters -- millions of dollars are at stake. What you might not know is that (as Dick and most would argue) NC-17 is not a rating so much as a way to force filmmakers to edit "questionable" material. In some cases it's as specific as "if you cut this, this and this then you'll get an R."

Dick interviews filmmakers and their experiences with fighting the ratings system in films such as "Boys Don't Cry," "The Cooler," and "American Psycho," but his goal is to find out who the raters on this panel of ratings screeners are because America is the only country that isn't transparent with that information. He hires a private investigator to obtain the information and the methods and results are interesting. It's very guerrilla-style and quasi- professional looking but it works.

There are only a couple problems with Dick's film. It wanders at times from the subject of film ratings into other censorship-relevant topics that while important deviate from his objective of learning how the MPAA operates in terms of ratings as far as what they don't tell the public. At one point he explores discrimination in ratings toward gay and lesbian sex and themes and only briefly touches on how violence is not rated as strictly as sex. Important stuff, but it's just not given enough treatment to be effective in the film.

The tone of the documentary is very Michael Moore without the conflict. It's satirical and gives you a couple head-shaking moments of disbelief, but its impact is not all that impressive. You leave the film thinking "yup, what they're doing isn't right" and having gathered some new insights, but other than reminding us that a handful of companies control our media and that everyone is in everyone's pockets, namely recently retired MPAA chief Jack Valenti, there seem to be no solutions, no forward movement on the subject matter. Definitely interesting and a worthwhile watch for any movie-lover.

~Steven C

Visit my site at

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Everyone should see this!!

Author: me-moviefan
19 April 2009

Movie rating has always been a problem for some countries, like India for example (my place) where the ratings board simply deletes all the parts they find objectionable. Some countries and cultures have a long way to go to attain the levels of Sweden or Netherlands! (come on, it is a fact! don't be a hypocrite!) Thanks for internet, i'm sure that i wouldn't have seen this without it in India or in uae where i'm working. I am sure that most people in Europe or USA won't be able to understand the lack of logic and reason in most aspects of functioning of a society when it comes to middle east and India. Just imagine this, Schindler's list and Borat are banned here, while most of terrifying horror/slasher films like Saw series,Texas chainsaw massacre etc are freely available in all DVD shops! Yes, this is very important -the cultures whom see violence and murder are natural while human attraction and depicting it in an artistic way is not, their future seems somewhat bleak. But what Americans are doing is not at all right.I just can't believe that their movie rating system is not transparent and they are doing it without any help from psychologists and human behavioural experts and.. everything connected to big corporations! uh and it is disturbing to hear that pentagon has been doing the whitewashing of defence for decades and this reminds me about the violent fascist society depicted in verhoeven's starship troopers. All are happy! That really sucks. 'The sole superpower', 'the guardian of freedom and freespeech and human values' should do better. This documentary is well-crafted, depicting all relevant and truthful information and comparing to other systems in Europe and.. it really widened my horizon on negative impact of violence in media on society and the importance of the right/competitive people doing the job. Hail Sweden!! (have read an article about their rating system) everyone should see this. 9/10

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

No sex please - we're Americans, until the rating system is changed

Author: mike65-1 from Ireland
30 March 2009

The most interesting aspect for this viewer was the observation that mainstream Hollywood product is now more regulated than a generation ago (Hal Ashbys Coming Home being cited as a film that would probably get lumbered with an NC17 now). That violence is treaty more leniently than sex/nudity is of course no shock as the whole tenor of Hollywoods output is "bang bang" rather than "kiss kiss".

As a non American it seems to me that the classification system is real problem. In most countries there is no advisory aspect with regard to a rating, if its an 18 then you must be at least 18 and so on, whereas the rule that an R means a child can see a film of adult nature if accompanied means the classifiers always have one eye on the potential child with guardian.

Change the R to a stricter 17+ rating and the emphasis can be switched and the NC17 dropped.

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Necessary viewing

Author: James Hayes-Bohanan, Ph.D. from Bridgewater, MA
30 November 2008

This film is frightening, amusing, and impressive -- all at the same time.

It is frightening to learn how much power we have concentrated in the hands of the shadowy MPAA board. In order to avoid government censorship (a real threat, unfortunately), the film industry self-censors, as this film clearly documents.

It is amusing to see the absurd incongruities in our national hypocrisies. Amusing, that is, until we consider the real people whose lives are still affected by ignorance and bias.

It is impressive to see the dedication and nerviness of this director and especially of the private investigator he hired to track down the MPAA deciders.

The only shortcoming in the film is that it does not fully explore the anti-trust implications of its findings. The connections of the film cartel to the MPAA are exposed, but a case for finding a remedy in anti-monopoly law could be made and is not.

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