This Film is Not Yet Rated
Kirby Dick’s hilarious but deeply worrying exposé of the Motion Picture Association of America’s rating board is one of the most thoroughly entertaining documentaries of the year. A clearly partisan Dick (his own films, among them Sick: The Life and Death of Bob Flanagan, Supermasochist, have suffered at the hands of the MPAA) looks at the disparities between the ratings dished out for Hollywood and independent product (the MPAA was set up by a conglomerate of big Hollywood studios), between depictions of gay and straight sex, between violence (good) and nudity (bad) and most of all between the artistic ambitions of individual filmmakers and the conservative right agenda of the board members.
Many souls have suffered at the hands of the MPAA, including Martin Scorsese, Darren Aronofsky and, unsurprisingly, Trey Parker and Matt Stone, the men behind South Park and Team America. Dick wheels some of them out with the footage they had cut while conducting his own undercover investigation into the individual members of the board (white bread rednecks to a man or woman). It’s delicious stuff, highlighting just how fortunate we are in this country since the passing of the equally censorious James Ferman.
GFT, Glasgow from Sun 24-Thu 28 Sep only.