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Warning: Parental Advisory (2002)

The story of the 1985 Senatorial hearings to place "Warning: Parental Advisory" labels on music albums with "obscene" lyrics and themes - and the rockers who tried to fight it.


Mark Waters


Jay Martel




Cast overview, first billed only:
Jason Priestley ... Charlie Burner
Mariel Hemingway ... Tipper Gore
Dee Snider ... Dee Snider
Deborah Yates Deborah Yates ... Pamela Stone
Lois Chiles ... Susan Baker
Tim Guinee ... John Denver
Deborah Jolly ... Shirley
Lee Burns ... Andrew Norris
John S. Davies ... Sen. John Curtis
Griffin Dunne ... Frank Zappa
Jim Beatty Jim Beatty ... Al Gore
Richard Dillard Richard Dillard ... Senator Sam
Gail Cronauer ... Sen. Paula Hawkins
Joe Berryman ... Donald Bean
David Born ... James Baker


In 1985, Charlie Burner is a hotshot political lobbyist for the music industry pushing for a blank tape tax in Washington DC, only to find himself facing new political headwinds. They come from the Parent Music Resource Center, a lobby group headed by Tipper Gore and several fellow Congressional wives on a self-appointed crusade against what they consider objectionable popular music. Despite Burner's dismissal of this group, the PMRC proves to be a burgeoning new threat to music's freedom of expression and the intellectual avant-guarde musician, Frank Zappa, pushes for him to fight back. Inspired to take a stand with a US Senate hearing scheduled, Burner can only to find three musicians willing to attend in opposition, the provocative Zappa, the outrageous heavy metal star, Dee Snider and the seemingly innocuous folk music legend, John Denver. Together, these disparate musicians would take on the self-righteous crusade against their art with powerful rhetoric no one sees coming. Written by Kenneth Chisholm (kchishol@rogers.com)

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Censorship is a dirty word.


Comedy | Drama | Music


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Release Date:

21 April 2002 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

PMRC See more »

Filming Locations:

Houston, Texas, USA See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
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Did You Know?


By the filming of this movie, Dee Snider was the only one of the three musicians who testified before Congress that was still alive to play himself in the film. John Denver had died in a plane crash in 1997, and Frank Zappa died in 1993 of prostate cancer. Their parts were both played by actors, while Snider played his own part. See more »


When Tipper Gore is watching Twisted Sister's "We're Not Gonna Take It" video on MTV, the video footage is from the beginning of the song but the lyrics are from the end of the song. See more »


Al Gore: Mr. Snider, what is the name of your fan club?
Dee Snider: The SMF Friends of Twisted Sister.
Al Gore: And uh, what does SMF stand for, uh when it's spelled out?
Dee Snider: The Sick Mother Fucking Friends of Twisted Sister.
Al Gore: Is this also a Christian group?
Dee Snider: I don't believe that profanity has anything to do with Christianity, thank you.
See more »

Crazy Credits

During the final credits, the movie cuts back and forth between the video for the Twisted Sister song "We're Not Gonna Take It" and shots of the movie's cast and crew dancing and singing along with the song. See more »

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User Reviews

A movie with more of a message than most will see
15 August 2004 | by algernon-5See all my reviews

It is interesting that a previous poster, stating that the point of the movie would be lost on most failed completely to see the real impact of the movie, as summarized in the final word......

However, playing devil's advocate I will presume him to be serious and only say that the political decisions depicted therein have helped us toward the wonderful world we live in today with murder, rape, violence, drugs, war, terrorism, disease, teenage pregnancy and alcoholism all a thing of the past.

The message I got from the film was that until one has reached maturity, and accepted parental responsibility then the need for restraint will not be understood.

I hope that more people see this a film depicting political failings rather than success, otherwise I cannot imagine how things will be 20 years from now. I'm probably wrong, but I do feel this was the REAL message.

Alternatively...the poster may be an impoverished executive of a record company merely happy that the pittance he earns has not been eroded merely to improve the quality of life of the masses.

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