To think my 6yo shouldn't watch The Two Towers?

(80 Posts)
StuntNun Sat 16-Feb-13 09:58:16

I just walked in to our living room to find DH had left DS1 (10) and DS2 (6) watching The Two Towers which is rated 12. They were at the scene in the Dead Marshes where Frodo falls in the water - this bit and they were both freaking out. This has happened before resulting in DS1 refusing to go upstairs by himself and DS2 starting to come into our room at night after having nightmares.

DH says I am being unreasonable: the kids should enjoy being scared and that I am projecting my own fears on to them. My opinion is that it's okay for them to watch a film rated above their age so long as one of us is with them. For example to warn them that a scary bit is coming and that they can close their eyes if it's too scary and I'll tell them when it's over.

The problem arises because DH's parents let him watch whatever he wanted including Jaws when he was six, whereas my parents were more likely to go by the ratings system although they did have some flexibility around it.

So AIBU to not want my kids to see films rated above their age without parental permission?

StuntNun Sat 16-Feb-13 09:58:47

Sorry that should say parental supervision.

CMOTDibbler Sat 16-Feb-13 10:01:08

YANBU - the two towers is not suitable at all for this age group.

TheLibrarianOok Sat 16-Feb-13 10:02:57

yanbu
he is being an arse

DomesticCEO Sat 16-Feb-13 10:03:58

Not at all suitable - but you'll get plenty of parents telling you that their highly advanced 3 yr old has watched it and was fine hmm.

SmiteYouWithThunderbolts Sat 16-Feb-13 10:04:43

YANBU at all. Some kids will be fine with it (my lot love LOTR but we always watch it together) but for many it would be too scary. It's not a kids' film!

WilsonFrickett Sat 16-Feb-13 10:04:58

Yep, kids should definitely enjoy being scared and freaked out. In fact, why doesn't he pop Saw on when they're done? Knobber.

Sorry but this really grips my shit, show kids something they're not emotionally ready to see then blame them for not being emotionally ready to see it angry

TheLibrarianOok Sat 16-Feb-13 10:06:59

there's often an element of a parent putting their own needs or wishes above those of their kids in this imo

Kirk1 Sat 16-Feb-13 10:15:18

Agree with Wilson. Your DH is a Knobber. Children do enjoy a mild scare, but go too far and you can cause real problems. Ask him if he is prepared to comfort your 6yo when he wakes screaming with nightmares in the middle of the night.

When I was young I was mistakenly given some books on ghosts and werewolves. I had terrible nightmares for YEARS because of it. Seriously, ban your idiot H from choosing your children's viewing, he's obviously too damaged to have rational judgement.

StuntNun Sat 16-Feb-13 11:01:17

Domestic I was expecting a bit of "My kids saw that and they were fine" to be honest. I'm sure some kids would watch The Two Towers or something similar and it wouldn't bother them at all. That was why I put 'my 6yo' in the question rather than 'a 6yo'.

My two boys love Jurassic Park which is a scary film but it's a PG so they can handle the scary bits. So it's not that they don't like scary films. And they enjoyed The Fellowship of the Ring which is PG so it's not unreasonable to let them watch The Two Towers, just not on their own.

My problem is that DH thinks I'm being overly protective so he doesn't take it seriously. This is actually the second time this has happened, at the exact same scene. But I was responding to the boys' reactions, not to what was in the screen. If I had walked in and they were sitting calmly watching it, that would be different. But DS2 was curled up in a ball with his face buried in the beanbag, and DS1 was in obvious distress (he has Aspergers so he has difficulty coping with his own emotions and wouldn't instinctively hide his face).

WilsonFrickett Sat 16-Feb-13 11:33:12

It's also unnecessary. My DS has ASD and is scared of the cinema. So we don't make him go - he can get through his life just fine by not 'enjoying cinema' just like yours can go through their life just fine not 'enjoying being scared'.

jamdonut Sat 16-Feb-13 11:43:00

When my DS was 6 he watched Jurassic Park and it scared the Hell out of him!! He wouldn't watch it at all after that.He's nearly 13 now and is still not very keen. But he loves all the LOtR films! I don't think he would have liked The Two Towers at 6 years old though.
Children are scared by different thing,and not necessarily what you think they will be scared of.

Not unreasonable at all.

I have let ds (7) watch the Hobbit, but we had a chat about Lotr being much scarier and that he wasn't old enough yet.

I watched the two towers with my hands over my eyes and I am 38!

Pandemoniaa Sat 16-Feb-13 11:48:49

YANBU. It's not necessary to scare the bejesus out of children and while I'm sure there are 6 year olds who could cope with the film, you know your own children and the consequences of them being exposed to something that frightens them.

It comes across as a rather unpleasant power game, imho.

I also realise that there comes a time when you can only warn older children about the content of some films that are, in theory, age appropriate - I recall ds2 (then aged 12) insisting on watching a particular film. I'd read the book and thought it was likely to contain elements he might find scary. I was right. 15 minutes in he said, (over casually), "I don't think I'm very bothered about watching the rest of this" and it was turned off. I didn't tell him to "man up" or insist that it was part of his development to get nightmares from it.

PretzelTime Sat 16-Feb-13 11:56:01

What Pandemoniaa said.

ErikNorseman Sat 16-Feb-13 12:03:00

YANBU! We watched the lotr films at Christmas and I covered DS's eyes or distracted him at the scary bits, and the corpses in the swamp is far too scary for a small child to see.

determinedma Sat 16-Feb-13 13:09:05

The orcs are very scary too, it would have scared the life out of mine at that age. I remember them being pretty scared of miss trunchbull in Matilda.

DeWe Sat 16-Feb-13 13:11:57

I read LoTR at that age. However I wouldn't have watched it as it is much more frightening like that.

IAmLouisWalsh Sat 16-Feb-13 13:18:26

Yadnbu. One of my favourite films ever, but we have had a long debate about what age to let DS1 watch it. He is 6 and there is no chance. We are currently working on 8 -10 before we unleash our inner geekery on him

StepAwayFromTheEcclesCakes Sat 16-Feb-13 13:52:37

YANBU... it scares me blush

JumpingJackSprat Sat 16-Feb-13 14:00:00

seriously?! i think jurassic park is far worse than lotr in terms of scares ... people getting eaten by a massive lizard and getting chased by velociraptors? as opposed to walking, talking and a few non bloody battles in lotr? im surprised you think jurassic park is ok but not lotr.

JenaiMorris Sat 16-Feb-13 14:02:55

As I think you're acknowledging op it really does depend on the child.

My ds watched all three LOTR films more or less back to back when he was about 9 to no ill effect; we'd run out of his DVDs, only had four TV channels and he was off school for a week with a bad chest so bored.

It's got nothing to do with being "advanced" - he just doesn't get frightened by purely fictional things - I actually genuinely worried for a while that he lacked imagination or something, he was (and is) so impervious to fiction.

StuntNun Sat 16-Feb-13 14:14:44

Jumping they watched Jurassic Park with the childminder the first time. I was a bit shocked myself but they took it in their stride and asked me to get them the DVD. Really though they're generally happier watching the things they want to watch. DS1 loves Smokey and the Bandit, Cannonball Run type of films; DS2 loves Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, Garfield etc. The kind of films you would expect a 10yo and a 6yo to watch really.

I think LibrarianOok is right, it's DH thinking this is what he would have liked to watch so that's what the DSs should watch. He is unrepentant though.

Smartiepants79 Sat 16-Feb-13 14:25:53

As a child I was scared by many fairly innocuous films and as an adult still avoid 'scary' films.
I miss nothing.
Why do they NEED to enjoy being scared? Just because he does?
They will come to it at the appropriate time and enjoy it all the more.
TLOTR is not appropriate for anyone under the age of 10 or so in my opinion. The story line alone would be utterly incomprehensible to 99% of this age range.
Why can't they enjoy being 6 and enjoy things made for 6 year olds?

moajab Sat 16-Feb-13 14:27:11

IMO it's a question of supervision and what the children enjoy. My DSs did watch LOTR at a young age, possibly the younger was 5 or 6. But they would watch it with us, not alone and they would definitly not be forced to watch anything that scared them or that they didn't enjoy.

DomesticCEO Sat 16-Feb-13 14:33:25

I'm stunned you let him watch JP!!!!! shock

But I've realised from reading MN I'm very strict when it comes to tv/film watching. My 4.8 yr old accidentally switched onto Power Rangers today and I made him turn it off straight away. They certainly won't be watching Jurassic Park until they're at least 9 or 10 if not older.

ChristmasJubilee Sat 16-Feb-13 14:38:51

When I was young (I don't know how old) my mum let me watch Alfred Hitchcock's The Birds. I don't remember anything about it but she says I had nightmares for months afterwards. I am now 49 and have had a bird phobia for as long as I can remember. I can't be in a room with a bird that is not in a cage and have to leave the supermarket if a bird is flying around inside.

I don't know if the two things are related but I bet they are and it has affected my whole life.

DomesticCEO Sat 16-Feb-13 14:48:41

That is the extreme end of what can go wrong Christmas, but the bottom line is what is the bloody rush to expose such young children to such unsuitable viewing????

They don't know these films exist unless we show them, and if they are told about them by older friends/siblings, it's surely very easy to say "you are too young".

You are not depriving them or disadvantaging them in anyway whatsoever and there are so many lovely films aimed at kids that they can enjoy.

I truly truly don't get it!

Chyelabinsk Sat 16-Feb-13 15:37:15

OP, YANBU.

My four-year-old has been watching The Two Towers this week on a second go through the LOTR trilogy. We have a PG edit of it, he watches it with one or both of us, we comment to help, we fast forward the "scary" bits. Any chance they were watching that version? It was on tv a month or two ago and we recorded it.

More generally, though, films have certificates for a reason, and there's no need to gallop through them early.

TheLibrarianOok Sat 16-Feb-13 15:44:16

I feel very sad for children who are exposed to this when they're clearly distressed by it.

Narked Sat 16-Feb-13 15:46:13

It's really a moot point whether it's ok for children generally to watch films rated higher than their age.

'They were both freaking out. This has happened before resulting in DS1 refusing to go upstairs by himself and DS2 starting to come into our room at night after having nightmares.'

These particular children have shown you that it's no ok for them. Unless your DH thinks that was you projecting.

StepAwayFromTheEcclesCakes Sat 16-Feb-13 15:47:31

DomesticCEO I agree when mine were that age they were happy enjoying Disney films and some of them have their moments.

StuntNun Sat 16-Feb-13 16:47:06

Horatio unfortunately it was the extended edition on Bluray. My DH is a big fan of the LOTR books so of course he was delighted when the films came out so I understand that he wants to share that interest with the kids. But he has also shown them Batman Begins which isn't really suitable either.

Part of the problem here is that my mum wouldn't let me watch Jaws (DH's favourite film) as a child and I didn't see it until he showed it to me when I was 19 so in his opinion I was deprived of a great film by strict parents. But in fact my parents were reasonable relaxed about the ratings and judged each film on it's own merits so I would have watched something like A Fish Called Wanda or Trading Places before I was 15 but they wouldn't have let me watch horror movies such as Nightmare on Elm Street until I was 18 or thereabouts.

DomesticCEO Sat 16-Feb-13 18:06:30

Horatio, genuine question - why on earth do you feel the need to show LOTR to a 4 yr old???

StepAway, yep my kids enjoy Pixar, Disney, etc. and even those we're sometimes not keen on!

DomesticCEO Sat 16-Feb-13 18:08:30

But Stunt, you watched it as an adult - no deprivation at all! All these films will be there for our kids to watch when older so what's the rush?

PretzelTime Sat 16-Feb-13 18:14:47

Stuntnun I think your Dh has some really weird opinions. That's like saying, if your 6 yo hasn't read War and Peace then you're depriving him of a great classic. Children have children's movies for a reason - then they can grow up and enjoy grown up movies when they're mature enough to handle/understand them.

EndoplasmicReticulum Sat 16-Feb-13 19:01:33

My six year old watched this at Christmas - but with us, so he could hide if necessary. Actually he was fine, really enjoyed it.

My eight year old, on the other hand, did not enjoy it at all so went to do something else instead.

I think what I'm trying to say with this is that it depends on the child, rather than the age.

Cakecrumbsinmybra Sat 16-Feb-13 19:11:14

I watched this again recently and there is some really disturbing images! I would be horrified if DS1 watched it (he's 6). I can only imagine the fall out as he is v sensitive and has not long progressed from cbeebies to films like Toy Story! And he's quite a mature, sensible little boy, not babyish.

It's rated 12 for a reason. Your DH is, indeed, a knobber and I would be so angry. Aside from ignoring the basic guidelines (6 is quite a long way from 12!), he's completely ignored the fact that films have affected your DC in the past and hasn't thought about their well being at all.

There is all the time in the world to watch scary shit on TV - it doesn't need to be when they are 6 and 10. YANBU.

Cakecrumbsinmybra Sat 16-Feb-13 19:13:51

we fast forward the "scary" bits

Really, what is the point of showing unsuitable films to small children? As the other poster said, what is the rush? There's loads of stuff they can enjoy without having to fast forward anything. Insane.

DomesticCEO Sat 16-Feb-13 19:17:15

Not one person has yet explained WHY they show these films to their children!

WHY? WHY? WHY?

Why show something that isn't suitable?

Really, why?

Why?

confused

JenaiMorris Sat 16-Feb-13 19:19:50

Domestic, I kind of explained upthread. Obviously that's just my situation though.

DomesticCEO Sat 16-Feb-13 19:24:07

Thank you Jenai. I still wouldn't have done that even in your situation but thank you for explaining.

It truly does genuinely confuse me as there are sooooo many films that kids can watch without having to 'fast forward the scary bits' or worry about giving them nightmares.

JenaiMorris Sat 16-Feb-13 19:42:01

Ah, but he really is impervious to it.

Last time I watched it though he took the piss out of me for taking it so seriously hmm grin

Funnily enough I didn't let him watch Power Rangers.when he was little because I found it made other children I knew quite fighty.

Oh, oh, oh and I remember posting on MN that same day to ask if Hot Fuzz was suitable. Someone kindly pointed me in the direction of [[ http://m.imdb.com/title/tt0425112/parentalguide this]] grin

JenaiMorris Sat 16-Feb-13 19:43:50

Link fail. this

Passmethecrisps Sat 16-Feb-13 19:52:51

I think it's this specific situation that makes this really poor show on the part of stunt's DH. Watching a film which gets a bit scary might be fine cuddled up to a trusted adult, feeling safe and secure. Being left alone with noone to reassure you if suddenly things become scary to you is horrible.

What 'scary' is is also a really relative term. I watched Pink Floyd's The Wall when I was 10. I was utterly compelled but it screwed wih my head! Genuinely years later I got a funny stomach churn when I saw a gas mask.

If he loves the films so much why stick it on and walk away? Sit with them and enjoy it together.

I might, at a push, say that children do need to develop a certain resilience when it comes to fantasy - just so they can cope watching TV or reading books generally. However, this is utterly beyond the pail.

JenaiMorris Sat 16-Feb-13 19:56:39

Absolutely, passme.

Passmethecrisps Sat 16-Feb-13 19:59:40

That is a fab resource jenal. That would be handy for showing films at school actually. Must make note. Thanks for sharing

MrsOakenshield Sat 16-Feb-13 20:01:49

Batman Begins???? FFS.

I love LOTR but there is no way in a billion years DD will be watching it until she's closer to 12 than not. Frankly, if they're too young to read it then they're definitely too young to watch it - and even if they have read it they may still be too young! Wait till they're old enough to really appreciate a 3 hour long 12 rated film!

EmpressMaud Sat 16-Feb-13 20:04:16

My children are very familiar with the story, but some of the scenes, thinking of some of those involving the Uruk-hai especialy, in the Two Towers are rather graphic in the film.
The Dead Marshes scene would be less of a concern, than some others.

EmpressMaud Sat 16-Feb-13 20:04:52

especially , of course.

JenaiMorris Sat 16-Feb-13 20:05:13

You're welcome smile

I was very grateful to the person who posted it on my thread. Sadly it was in Chat so I can't find it any more to mention that I've used it lots since.

I didn't put Hot Fuzz on btw! I'd completely forgotten all the unsuitable bits and thought the humour would've been right up ds's street. So LOTR it was.

NcNcNcNc Sat 16-Feb-13 20:09:49

Batman Begins?????????????????????????? shock Are you taking the piss OP??

Iteotwawki Sat 16-Feb-13 20:30:55

YANBU. I get where your DH is coming from as both DH & I love LoTR (and Star Wars, Avatar, you get the idea) and we enjoy watching / sharing favourite movies at home with the boys (5&6).

We have lots of discussions about what is and isn't appropriate - current consensus is Fellowship was OK with both of us watching , explaining and providing a tummy to hide in / finger on the FF button if needed. And if tummies and FF needed too often then to wait a year or two (DS1 has read the Hobbit so was really keen to watch the films).

With Star Wars, they've seen 4-6 but they aren't allowed 1-3 for another few years.

With HP, they can watch the movie once they've read the book. I find if they know the story & what's going to happen, they aren't bothered by scary or gory scenes because they knew they were coming and they know there's a happy ending. We've got up to Prisoner this way and while I'm getting nagged for the movie of Goblet, not until they've read the book.

Avatar will wait until they're much older.

It is partly wanting to share stuff we enjoy and wanting to watch something that suits our needs - I know I fall into the trap of wanting to watch a movie so I tell myself the boys will love it and then DH looks aghast at the idea and I rethink.

Don't think I'll let them near JP just yet, I've not seen it for years but I remember being uncomfortably scared.

I find I look at the commonsensemedia and rotten tomatoes websites a fair bit!

EndoplasmicReticulum Sat 16-Feb-13 20:37:17

Why did we watch it? It was actually the 8 year old who asked as he has just read the hobbit, and got LOTR Lego for Christmas.

Theicingontop Sat 16-Feb-13 20:41:05

Better than a 3yo I know who watches The Walking Dead. "She knows it's pretend..." - Hoookay... She says stuff like "Daddy if you annoy me any more I going to break your head and eat you" - I kid you not hmm

I was raised like your DH. I was allowed to watch whatever whenever, with my older siblings. I was never scared, it was just the way I was. If you have sensitive kids then you go by what you think is best. Tell your DH that the kids are not him, they have different tolerances, and tell him if he's going to let the kids watch 12 rated movies, that he needs to be there to supervise their reactions to it!

Late back, sorry.

DH and I went to see the Hobbit. DS(4) had the book read to him (in patches) at the same time. He desperately wanted to go to see it; we said no.

At around the same time, the PG edits of the original LOTR trilogy came on the tv. I recorded them for myself, and noted the certificate.

I can't remember precisely why DS ended up being shown the LOTR films. I expect we showed him a bit so he could see the world of the book we had just read.

He watches probably half of the films. We fastforward through "boring talking" and battle scenes. These are not scary at 12x speed. We watch perhaps 15-20mins at a time (inc ffing) before he loses interest and wants Jake and the Neverland Pirates again.

Since I posted earlier, though, I realised I probably wouldn't show the film to a 6yo.

4 is young enough not to understand the darker bits - we have to provide a live audio commentary on most of it, which obviously we do at an age-appropriate level, eg "they need to destroy the Ring so the baddie will go away and everyone can be happy again".

But 6 is more aware. 6 would question why and imagine more vividly and so on.

MrsOakenshield Sat 16-Feb-13 23:03:41

but why, WHY do such young children need to watch these films? I just don't get it, there are so many fantastic children's films out there. LOTR trilogy are NOT children's films, and even The Hobbit isn't, and I speak as a big fan grin, even if the book is. A four-year-old watching it (even edited)? Jesus. What's the POINT, if you have to explain the whole thing? Keep it for when he can properly understand it, if you be that patient!

DomesticCEO Sat 16-Feb-13 23:07:54

Thank you Mrs O - my point exactly!

EndoplasmicReticulum Sat 16-Feb-13 23:14:32

TheIcing - I can't watch the Walking Dead, and I'm 39!

aldiwhore Sat 16-Feb-13 23:33:29

My five year old has seen all the Lord of the Rings films, yet I have banned him from certain U's and PG's... you know what your child will be disturbed by, upset by, damaged by.

Orcs and war will not be the things that hurt my child psychologically.

Sex, sadness, swearing, human violence will.

My five year old will not watch Snow White or The Iron Giant... they upset him.

YANBU however, this is something that should certainly be agreed upon by you AND your DH...

aldiwhore Sat 16-Feb-13 23:36:02

MrsO I didn't have to explain a thing.. my FIVE year old was utterly enchanted and understood as much as he needed to (but then, he'd seen them in order).

My 9 year old reads the book in between shoite school reading books... my 5 year old is desperate to learn to read properly just so he CAN read LotR!

Every child is different.

BlatantLies Sat 16-Feb-13 23:50:09

I don't think it is suitable for young DC's however my DD watched it in a cinema when she was 6. confused She is 16 now. I clearly remember covering her eyes a few times including when they showed the corpses under the water.
She enjoyed the film and we watched it a second time at the cinema a few weeks later.
We also took her to see the Fellowship of the Ring the previous Year (when she was 5) and the final movie the year after.

She is still a huge Lord of the Rings fan and has read and re-read all the books. We still have regular Lord Of The Ring-a-Thons.

I know I could be seen as being massively hypocritical as I have, otherwise, been very careful about what media my DC's have seen. My DCs were not allowed any first person shooter video games until 15ish and we followed the stated age ratings (within a year or so) for all other movies and games. Even thoughmy eldest is in his 20's they still don't have horrible violent games (like Grand Theft Auto) or movies in the house.

I treated The Lord of the Rings differently from all other movies as I thought there were just the most incredible movies ever made and that the spectacle of watching them at a young age outweighed the risk that my DD would be scared. I would NOT have let either of my DS's see the movies at such a young age though. (my eldest DS could barely watch Disney movies at that age grin )

I don't know what the age rating was inthe UK as we were living in Canada at the time where, I assume, it was a PG rating.

The fact that the OP's DC's were upset when they watched the movies shows that they shouldn't have seen it so YANBU smile

StuntNun Sun 17-Feb-13 00:06:19

Domestic - yes I watched Jaws as an adult and really enjoyed it and have watched it a couple of times since. That's why I don't understand the rush for the kids to watch these films now. We have shelves of kids DVDs, DS2 came home from school on Friday asking to watch the Smurfs, he's not even interested in LOTR. And Batman Begins was ludicrous, the hallucination scenes in that are pretty scary and there's way too much violence. Although he did watch that one with them at least.

On the other hand I let them watch the Amazing Spider-Man which is a 12A and they both enjoyed that without being too scared. I suppose every film should be judged on its own content. My DS1 begged to leave the cinema when we went to see Alice in Wonderland and that's PG.

steppemum Sun 17-Feb-13 00:22:22

I am very strict on this.
The film is rated 12 for a reason, so it isn't suitable for a 6 yo.

I think people who let younger children watch inappropriate stuff are actually miss understanding some of the keys in child development.

A child under 7 has a very blurred boundary between fact and fiction. that is why they can believe in father christmas coming down the chimney, when on another level they know full well that you don't have a chimney and if you did he wouldn't fit down and certainly couldn't get back up.

So when a child under 7 sees a scene in a film, it isn't pretend. It is real. Adn you only have to talk to a 6 year old about how films are made to start to uncover that they have no idea that the monster is made of rubber make-up. How could they unless they have paid a visit to a film make-up studio and seen the whole process.
The film holds a reality for them that we just don't get as adults because we have grown-up.

PG rated films are (according to the ratings website) suitable for children approx aged 6 and above, in other words, as they begin to understand it is not real.

My kids are not allowed to watch PG until 7 plus. That includes Dr Who, and other TV stuff which is rated PG

I cannot understand why you would expose your child to violence, horror, swearing and sex which is not age appropriate. To a 6 year old, it might as well be a corpse in the room on the floor as on the screen

OK - I'll get off my soap box now

BlatantLies Sun 17-Feb-13 01:13:25

In Quebec, Canada, where my 6 year old DD saw the LOTR movies are rated G by the Régie du cinéma ;

   G = Visa général (General Rating): May be viewed, rented or purchased by persons of all ages

So I think I am officially in the clear. grin

mind you the Québécois do like to do their own thing

aldiwhore Sun 17-Feb-13 02:01:48

Steppemum thanks for knowing my children better than me. Very helpful.

I don't misunderstand key stages in child development in general, but they are not hard fast rules and perhaps if you acknowledge that what is a good rule of thumb in child psychology or teaching practice when you're training to work with a mixed bag of children who are not your own may not be 'right' when dealing with an individual child who you know well, you may see why my hackles are up and I found that comment patronising...

I can safely say, as a woman who adores story telling and fantasy and fairytales, that I know the difference between fantasy and reality, and as such, as a mother, it has always been a hot issue with me as a parent from the get go. My children certainly knew the difference between fact and fiction at a young age, they knew the difference between a story and a reality.

I knew faiyrtales weren't real at 4 years old. I was just more able to suspend that disbelief. I also had parents who never assumed I knew, and we'd discuss it.

My sons don't refuse to watch Snow White because they think it's real, they refuse because it just creeps them out.. yet an orc doesn't.

What's the point? Well, like a later poster said, LOTR is a special case. The only other PG he has seen is Rise of the Guardians, otherwise we are a Shrek/Toy Story/etc household.

It hasn't opened the floodgates to say "ah well all PGs are fine" and then next year "ah well he's nearly six so let's stick a 12 on".

StuntNun Sun 17-Feb-13 09:56:08

You're quite right Steppemum about the ratings being there for a reason. In some cases a younger child can't really understand what they are seeing and doesn't get upset the same way as an older child so it seems as if they could cope. For example when I saw E.T. at the cinema (age 6) I couldn't understand why my big brother (age 9) was crying, whereas he found it upsetting. But you have to consider each film in it's own right. Jaws was rated PG when it came out but I wouldn't let my kids see it yet. On the other hand they watched The Amazing Spider-Man (12A) quite happily. I'm sure some 18 year olds aren't ready for Paranormal Activity, I know it freaked me out and I'm 36!

BlatantLies Sun 17-Feb-13 10:46:23

My DC's never believed in Father Christmas and I think they all had a good grasp of what's real and not real. That said, it doesn't mean that they didn't find fictional things scarey. My eldest was always scared of the evil step Mum type figure. (cruella D'vil type characters)
LOTR has no (or very little) swearing, no sex but a lot of 'non bloody' violence and a lot of scarey monsters.
The orcs are creepy but very fictional IYSWIM . I guess the Quebec Film Censors gave it a general rating as they thought it was ok for little DCs and Quebec'ers are a contrary lot

I am glad I took my DD to see the movies. It was a fantastic experience for us all. We saw it on a huge screen which made it all the better.

I was always impressed that my DD sat glued to her seat and enthralled for each of the LOTR movies. It was probably the longest time she has sat still in her whole life.

I still agree with the OP though as I don't see the point of DC's seeing movies or having video games above their age rating.

aldiwhore Sun 17-Feb-13 11:39:21

There are some U films that my children don't watch...or rather, find disturbing. The LotR trilogy well, exactly for the reason BlatantLies suggests... my personal opinion is that it is suitable for MY children.

I always watch a film before deciding if it suitable or not. So the rating system has it's uses... my children know Father Christmas is just a story... we 'believe' in the moment, we are engrossed, we discuss reality/fantasy. The discussion and relationship with my children is key, I believe, the films they view, the games they play are not the strongest influencing factor in their lives.

WilsonFrickett Sun 17-Feb-13 17:08:57

I think another thing is my DS7 is perfectly capable on calling me out on any perceived double standards. So if I let him watch film A which happens to be a 12 I think is OK, when I then say 'no' to film B that's also a 12 but isn't OK, then I'll have a battle royal on my hands. Far easier to have a blanket ban atm. It's not like the films he will enjoy will melt away between now and him being the right age.

StuntNun Sun 17-Feb-13 17:18:18

Yes there is something to be said for having the films to look forward to. Jaws is my DH's favourite film so it will be a big day when we get to sit down with the boys to watch it. What's wrong with savouring the anticipation of that day rather than rushing into watching it when they aren't quite ready.

cory Sun 17-Feb-13 18:13:12

I am one of the parents who would use my own initiative to decide what is appropriate for my own children in my own home. And might also use the zapper to avoid certain scenes in an otherwise appropriate film.

Why would "you are not to see this film because I think it is inappropriate" be more double standards than "you are not to see this film because the censor thinks it's inappropriate"?

Dc are more likely to respect my judgment than the censor, particularly since the day I was refused to buy a CD because I was accompanied by my dd; the tracks in question were on the radio all the time and dd couldn't avoid hearing them unless she were to go and live in a cave somewhere with no radio signals.

One of the more educational things I did with dd was to watch the This Is How We Made This Film part on the LOTR box set when she was about 6. She has never been able to take any monsters seriously since, because she knows anybody who dies just falls onto a blue bouncy mattress. The only drawback is- she is desperate to try for stage school.

DadOnIce Sun 17-Feb-13 18:16:58

He should be allowed to watch it once he's read the book smile

BlatantLies Sun 17-Feb-13 18:33:45

I agree that with most films you can simply wait until your DC are old enough to see them on DVD. However, if ever a film was made to be watched at a cinema it was the LOTR Triology. It's brilliant on any format but best on a huge screen especially when you are 6 grin

EndoplasmicReticulum Sun 17-Feb-13 19:28:03

Jaws was a PG? Wow. I watched that when I was about 9 (I think) and was terrified to go in the sea for at least a year afterwards.

StuntNun Sun 17-Feb-13 20:16:33

We did take both boys to see the Hobbit at the cinema but we were with them and DS2 did spend a couple of scary bits cuddled into me so he couldn't see them and I could tell him when they were over. It's really watching these sort of films without parental supervision that concerns me more. I remember being terrified of Young Frankenstein as a child and my dad saying, "But it's a comedy." I didn't get the jokes though, I was too young and it just seemed scary to me.

On a related subject my DB just asked me if he could show the boys The Dark Knight. <Facepalm> I think the Joker and especially Two Face might be a bit more than they can handle. However they are watching Avengers Assemble with him instead which they have seen twice before (with me both times). It really is a minefield, DH can't see why Avengers Assemble is okay but The Two Towers isn't. But I'm going by the children's reactions to the film and they were scared of the goblins and the Dead Marshes in The Two Towers but they weren't upset by the scary bits in Avengers.

StuntNun Sun 17-Feb-13 20:18:22

Jaws was a PG on release but it was changed to a 12 on DVD.

BlatantLies Mon 18-Feb-13 00:46:33

The Joker is really creepy..... shock

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