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9yo watched JAWS on sleepover

(262 Posts)
VikingBlonde Wed 22-Aug-18 13:52:13

I've just picked up my DD from a sleepover, she's just 9 and a gentle, fairly sensitive sort. First thing she says to me is "I really didn't like Jaws mummy!" And the dad is like "oh yeah that might not have been the best choice of movie ..." angry

I'm fewwwmin! Jaws is a horror film. I watched it recently and jumped out of my skin a few times. And I'm not bloody well 9. There's a shed load of claret and kids being eaten alive and realistic limbs being severed and we are - to cap it all off - going on our ONLY holiday of the whole year (cos we are skint) camping at the beach tomorrow. She's already told me she won't be getting in the water when she normally loves bodyboarding. CHEERS FOR THAT!!!

The kid who's house the sleepover happened at is a child who can't have sleepovers at anyone else's cos she gets anxious and stressed if she's away from her own home so how the effing chuff have they managed to show MY kid a horror movie while she's there!!!??? Grrrrrrrr

We have had a talk about there NOT being great whites around the UK and that the film is just pretend but she just recounted the part about the little boy getting eaten and burst into tears.

What would you do?

newmobile Wed 22-Aug-18 19:53:10

It's on netflicks at the moment and is rated a PG so can see why the parents may have chosen it. My children aged between 9 and 15 watched it for the first time on a rainy day last week. They loved it and as I have got older I really appreciated how well directed the film was. I watched it when younger and survived! It's just abit of fun it's not a true story. Cinema trip to watch the Meg planned for the weekend it really bonded us as a family shared interest etc

NicoAndTheNiners Wed 22-Aug-18 19:54:48

I love Jaws, one of my favourite films. I do find it (still) a bit scary but it’s suspense not gore. That bit near the end where they’re sat in the boat at night waiting gets me every time!

As a child it bloody terrified me. My parents made me watch it when I was about 7 and I had nightmares for months!

I admit I am not good with scary films.

But yes it’s a PG so don’t think you can be too cross.

NicoAndTheNiners Wed 22-Aug-18 19:58:23

Sorry, I see it’s now a 12a.

Still, they didn’t show her a 15. They probably thought a 12a would be suitable but agree they shouldn’t make that decision of they don’t know the kid that well.

I didn’t let dd play dirty dancing at a sleepover over once as it’s a 15 and they were only 14. Dd had seen it and loved it, I think it’s very tame for a 15 but not my decision.

RoseGoldEagle Wed 22-Aug-18 20:00:59

It just seems a really strange choice of film when other people’s children are around- nothing wrong with these parents deciding their own child was fine to watch it, but surely you’d realise some children might not be?

Magicpaintbrush Wed 22-Aug-18 20:04:07

My dd is 9 too and there is no way I would let her watch Jaws. Firstly because I know my dd and she would hate it and have nightmares, secondly because there are a million other films she could watch and enjoy that don't have severed heads and limbs and blood - I know it's dated but I don't think that matters tbh, it's still technically a horror movie and when it originally came out at the cinema was aimed at adults, not 9 year olds, for a reason. The fact that some dipshit reckons it's now deserving of a PG rating is a bit stupid imo hmm. If dd wants to watch Jaws when she's older that's fine, but 9 is too young, and what's the rush anyway?? I think at a kids sleepover if you are a responsible adult you put on a dvd that you know the kids will enjoy without scaring the more sensitive ones shitless - or check with the parents first - it's not like there aren't loads to choose from so it need not be a big deal confused. So I don't blame the OP for being pissed off, I would be too. Actually I know my dd would leave the room if she was at a sleepover and they put on a horror film, which would make her feel self conscious and upset. Not all kids are the same.

LagunaBubbles Wed 22-Aug-18 20:17:49

I loved Jaws when I saw it as a child. Nightmare on Elm Street on the other hand terrified the 10 year old me!

multiplemum3 Wed 22-Aug-18 20:21:55

When I was a kid it was never really policed what I watched, if I got scared over a film but mum would probably say "never mind" and that would be that. I remember having sleepovers with my friends and scaring ourselves silly, it was just fun. I understand all kids are different but she'll get over it, if you feed into it it'll just make it worse

multiplemum3 Wed 22-Aug-18 20:22:48

My mum*

Teateaandmoretea Wed 22-Aug-18 20:23:05

Can't believe ppl saying they would dismiss a child who was scared by patting it on the head!

I can't believe that people would blow a child being a bit scared into such a mains drama. But we're all different clearly ..... wink

Teateaandmoretea Wed 22-Aug-18 20:23:44

if you feed into it it'll just make it worse

^^exactly this

hottotrotsky Wed 22-Aug-18 20:54:14

I used to watch it on my own at 9yo on betamax vid every afty after school. LOVED it. Come on. There's far more noxious stuff out there.

Only bit that used to freak me out was the severed head popping out of boat underwater.

Ace film.

JasmineByTheSea Wed 22-Aug-18 20:56:59

I agree with OP and woyld be upset too.

Lizzie48 Wed 22-Aug-18 21:04:44

Now that I think about it, I was a similar age when I first watched 'Poseidon Adventure', which is far more harrowing and only 6 of the passenger survive in the end. But my siblings and I loved it and used to watch it every day on Betamax as well like you did with Jaws, @hottotrotsky happy memories there. smile

The film that scared me the most, though, curiously enough, was 'Wizard of Oz', which I first watched at 8 years old, especially the tornado sweeping the house away. I was terrified of the wind for weeks afterwards. grin

SusanneLinder Wed 22-Aug-18 21:15:51

You're gonna need a bigger boat...😂.
I would probably check with parents before letting kids watch that movie, but I wouldn't go heap shit about it.
Shark is rubber, and dead obvious.
People mentioned the Exorcist ( no I wouldn't let kids watch it! ), but I ruined that film for DH as I kept was so ridiculous!

edwinbear Wed 22-Aug-18 21:26:02

I watched it with DS (8) and DD (6) atbthe weekend. As soon as it finishes we watched Jaws 2. They both loved it!

In fact we are going to watch The Meg together on Monday grin

JamieVardysHavingAParty Wed 22-Aug-18 21:42:34

Yeah, bad decision on their part.

Mind you, I can kind of see how it happened. Fear is a such an incredibly personal thing, and it can be easy to assume that if you or your child aren't scared, no-one else will be. Of course, it doesn't work like that at all; witness how I get wasp-phobic DH to catch spiders for me while I put the wasps out for him!

But if this girl's dad hasn't thought about it that carefully and simply thinks of her as the most sensitive of her friendship group (because she's too scared to go on sleepovers), I could see how he might have assumed the rest of the kids would all be fine with any film she could handle. Shame it's more complex than that.

TheHobbitMum Wed 22-Aug-18 21:44:05

Really? It's a PG and hardly a porno5or a genuine horror/gorefest! DC will survive I'm sure hmm

hottotrotsky Wed 22-Aug-18 21:55:11

Just to add DS 7 almost 8 yo loves Jaws as I've tried to foist my childhood passions onto my lot. ET rules tho as far as throwback kids' films are concerne in my house. Yeah I know Jaws isn't technically a kids' fim...

Gonig back to Jaws tho one of the best scenes ever in a film is where Richard Dreyfus, Roy Schneider and Robert thingummy's characters are pissed on the boat and sing "show me the way to go home"... before Jaws attacks said boat. Absolute quality.

Electrack Wed 22-Aug-18 21:57:11

Scousers love to fume. Or fewm in this case.

The Robert Shaw blood in mouth unsettled me. I was 9

NotUmbongoUnchained Wed 22-Aug-18 22:02:37

9 is the prime age for Jaws i thought?! That’s when we all watched it. My 4 year old has watched it!

joanslegs Wed 22-Aug-18 22:12:08

My parents took my brother at age 7 which, they acknowledge, may have been a slightly poor parenting choice.

My brother, who is a lot older, then rented Jaws and The Dark Crystal when we got the first family vcr. So I saw it at about five. I have no memory of The Dark Crystal.

It’s my favourite film of all time.

I’m not saying I wasn’t slightly traumatised, it was a long time before I put my head under the water in the bath to rinse my hair...

BUT! It was a rite of passage for me and I’ve never forgotten it.

I feel quite emotional now, I have no idea how this post will help except to say scary films are another rite of passage many of us experience for the better. At the end of the day it’s a buddy adventure with the heroes winning. gin

cariadlet Wed 22-Aug-18 23:41:05

Slightly derailing the thread here, but the discussion of whether Jaws is a PG or a 12 and whether that certificate is appropriate started me thinking about how odd some certificates are.

I'm currently watching Jonathon Creek on Netflix. It's one of the really old ones when Caroline Quentin was still in it. Ok, so somebody's just been found dead in a locked room. Look's like he's got a sword going through him. But it's basically comical stuff.

It's a 15!

The scariest thing so far is how young Alan Davies looks.

GerdaLovesLili Thu 23-Aug-18 09:28:43

It turns out that the version CH4 and Netflix are currently showing is the original A now (PG) version. So the chances are that that is the version OP's daughter saw. Not the newish 12A 2012 re-cut.

BuntyII Thu 23-Aug-18 09:35:18

We used to watch nightmare on elm street and hellraiser when we had sleepovers grin

ShatnersWig Thu 23-Aug-18 09:41:56

@GerdaLovesLili Repeating myself to you here but anyway.... The 2012 version and 1975 versions are IDENTICAL. There are no extra scenes at all. The BBFC gave it a new classification in 2012 for its re-release. It is not a recut, despite you stating twice that it is.

I bet if most of you were asked what certificate the original Ghostbusters is you would say PG. Nope, not any more. That was re-classified as a 12A in 2011 and is a 12 on blu ray. There are no extra scenes in that, either.

GerdaLovesLili Thu 23-Aug-18 09:49:39

Well then C4 and iMDB are lying when they say it's a PG.

puzzledlady Thu 23-Aug-18 09:51:08

It does not matter how everyone else’s children were ok with it at age 5 - what matters is your daughter isn’t and so now you have to try and help her deal with that. There is nothing wrong in being scared at jaws - all children are different. Fwiw - my father was a massive jaws fan so I watched it when I was little - he told us all about it so we knew what would happen. It’s one of my favourite movies. Would I let my 4 year old watch it? No.

sendthecoffee Thu 23-Aug-18 09:54:19

I can't get too worked up about it as my three year old watches Jaws like other three year olds watch Paw Patrol - on repeat. Maybe not the best choice for a sleepover though, if you don't know the children particularly well.

ShatnersWig Thu 23-Aug-18 09:59:24

@GerdaLoveLili I just looked at IMDB and it is ridiculously confusing as it says it's rated PG for TV, the cinema re-release was 12A and the video release in 2000 was PG. Yet the blu ray is very definitely also 12 (because I own it).

But the fact remains that whatever version you see, it is the same film. The only difference is that if you've seen the latest blu ray it has been remastered to improve sound and picture. But otherwise, identical films.

CoraPirbright Thu 23-Aug-18 16:38:37

Totally agree with Char:
I saw it aged about 8-9 and was VERY scared. I knew the shark was fake and the actors were acting and the blood was fake blood. But I had an imagination and couldn't stop thinking about the horror of being eaten alive - it was that scene with the guy that gets eaten from the feet up, so he's awake and aware he's being eaten.

I also saw it when I was 9 and it was the first time outside cartoon violence that I had seen people die horrible deaths. And ones that can and do happen in real life (although thankfully extremely extremely rarely obviously). Swimming in the sea is one of my absolutely favourite things to do but it has been ruined by this film. Feel panicky, can’t not hear the bloody music and if I shut my eyes I can see that mouth coming towards me.

I am with the OP all the way and would be bloody furious with the sleepover host parents. And for all the people saying “oh I watched it when I was 3/5/7 etc and I was fine” well bully for you. We’re not all the same.

Iseveryusernametaken Thu 23-Aug-18 22:08:41

Get her to watch this. Sharks get far too much bad press.

Mummyoflittledragon Thu 23-Aug-18 23:57:11

That’s because your 3yo doesn’t understand the content of the film in the same way as a child would of about 7 plus. They don’t have the cognitive ability or emotional awareness. When your 3yo is older, you will get why the comparison is non sensical.

dontknowwhattodo80 Fri 24-Aug-18 00:03:11

I'd always ask if I wanted to show a film that some children might find scary

My 9 year old DS would have been scared, he's a bit sensitive like that! I wouldn't have been fuming but I would have felt sorry for him as he wouldn't have been confident enough to say he didn't like it!

If he asked to watch it at home though I'd be happy to let him

tor8181 Fri 24-Aug-18 01:08:05

we went to see the meg last week(think 10X as bad as jaws)it was a lot of jump scares, very graphic human deaths and live whale eating

its a 12a and i took a just 8 y old but he doesnt care about things like that

there was a lot of toddlers/preschool age there and this was a 8.45pm showing
i thought it should have been a 15

trouble is when you trust other adults to look after your child your trusting their judgment and he probably though at this age a PG was fine

all thouse thats saying its not a PG on netflix (uk version)it is down as a PG as i just checked and i have 3 children accounts on mine and it come up on everyone

Maddy70 Fri 24-Aug-18 01:11:37

Jaws isn't an adult movie it's a PG. Really wouldn't even consider this inappropriate tbh

Mummyoflittledragon Fri 24-Aug-18 01:18:10

It’s not a PG anymore. It’s 12A. Mentioned several times upthread.

gingergenius Fri 24-Aug-18 01:27:33

Hansel and gretel - put in the oven by a blind cannibalistic witch
Ted riding hood- terrorised by a wolf who subsequently ate her granny
Cinderella abused and tortured by her step family
Snow White - abused and tortured by her step mother
Rapunzel - kidnapped, abused and tortured
The three little pigs - harassed and ultimately stalked for being too trusting
Jack and the beanstalk - a lazy no good thief

I think Jaws us the least of your worries!

gluteustothemaximus Fri 24-Aug-18 01:44:24

Fucking hell. Only on MN is this acceptable.

I'd be fucking livid.

I watched this aged 7. Had nightmares for years. Don't give a shit if PG, 12, 15 or 18 it is a very intense film with very scary scenes. 9 years old? No fucking way.

But this is MN. So as it's a PG, my 2 year old should watch it and I should get a grip hmm

Aus84 Fri 24-Aug-18 02:04:50

OP a couple of things.
Nothing in this film is realistic.
It's a thriller, not a horror.
It's PG. (PG 13 in Aus, but still, PG)

Even though I think you are getting a little worked up over it I can see how a 9 year old sensitive child could be upset. If it helps, one thing that works with my children is I look up the actors and we learn a little about each one. It reassures them that it was just pretend, they didn't really die and there was no real blood. Even just reading little about the making of the movie and where/how the scenes were shot could help.

PinkAvocado Fri 24-Aug-18 02:08:40

I honestly don’t think in my normal life that anyone would think YABU. The man being eaten alive and the severed body parts are disturbing and the parents who let them watch it are irresponsible in this instance.

Btw, I liked your ‘fewwwwmin’ as it made me say it in a scouse accent and usually I’m crap at them grin

StitchingMoss Fri 24-Aug-18 02:19:41

Staggered at the films being shown to such young DC - WHY would anyone show their 3 yr old Jaws? Just why??? They can’t have asked to watch it as they wouldn’t know it exists so just why??

My nearly 9 yr old has a massively over active imagination and would be seriously traumatised by Jaws - I’d be livid if someone showed it to him on a sleepover.

Agree with other posters who say only on MN is this crap ok.

Mintylicious Fri 24-Aug-18 03:37:24

It’s only a huffposf article, but this is quite interesting on the 12A category and its impact on cinema:

Scottsy100 Fri 24-Aug-18 03:38:03

My 8 year old son watched it only the other week with me (I couldn’t wait to show him as it’s a classic) he laughed at how fake the shark was, jumped when the head came out under the water and made all the appropriate “ewwww” noises when Quinn got munched by Jaws, I watched all kinds of films when I was young and I think it’s a better way to go than to be scared of everything, scaredy cat children are a bit of a yawnfest.

StitchingMoss Fri 24-Aug-18 05:30:53

Scaredy cat children are a yawn fest? hmm

So where do u go with it then? Saw at aged 9? Hostel at 10?

It’s just bollocks.

It doesn’t make you some Uber fucking parent because you show your kids inappropriate films. It’s just stupid.

Kids are over exposed to violence nowadays - partly because of the ludicrous overuse of the 12a certificate and partly because of parents who seem to be in some kind of ludicrous competition to see what totally inappropriate films they can get away with showing their kids.

Toddlers going to see Meg? Insane.

StitchingMoss Fri 24-Aug-18 05:35:27

Minty, thanks for the article - puts it much better than I could. And at least someone else agrees with me that Jaws isn’t appropriate for primary aged kids.

Couldn’t agree more about the exposure children now have to violence. I see it all the time in schools. Parents who don’t think it has an affect are delusional.

bluemascara Fri 24-Aug-18 06:15:13

I'm fairly sure I was 6 or 7 when I first seen jaws. Flippin loved it!
Catch yourself on... she will be fine.
Watching jaws was a right of passage when I was young.
Unwrap your daughter from all that cotton wool

PutYourBackIntoit Fri 24-Aug-18 06:52:54

I saw it aged 5. I'm terrified of the sea, remember being terrified in swimming pools just in case a shark could get through the grate.

At nearly 40 I have to pretend to my children that I'm not scared of swimming in the sea because I want to instill confidence in them. I wish wish wish I hadn't seen Jaws at such a young age.

For those saying it isn't scary, it bloody well is (for some at least), so no way this film should have been shown at a sleepover.

For me, films with massive anticipation are the scariest (Blair witch project too).
Jaws, with the footage from the sharks perspective and that iconic music made it absolutely terrifying. When I go swimming, if that music gets into my head, I cannot push it away, I get out of the sea. It appalls me that I'm so scared.

I'd be livid if my 9 yr old watched this at a sleepover. YNBU.

Scottsy100 Fri 24-Aug-18 07:48:51

Didn’t say I was an Uber parent just that I can’t stand kids who cry over everything so prefer films and characters to not be one of those things and the best way to do that is make sure they know these things aren’t real from an early age.

cariadlet Fri 24-Aug-18 08:13:36

I can’t stand kids who cry over everything so prefer films and characters to not be one of those things and the best way to do that is make sure they know these things aren’t real from an early age.

But that doesn't mean deliberately exposing them to things that could frighten them so that you can then explain that they're not real.
Yes, if they're inadvertently presented with something that scares them then you can do the reassuring, explain it's all pretend etc, but then you take those sensitivities into account in the future.

scaredy cat children are a bit of a yawnfest.

I hate this attitude from some posters.

My daughter is one of those that I know would have been terrified by Jaws when she was 9. Not by the actual shark when it finally appears, but by the building threat and sense of menace before this. (Spielberg had terrible trouble with "Bruce" the mechanical shark which is why it doesn't appear much - which ended up helping him to create a scarier and more effective film).
She's very imaginative and gets totally immersed in films. When we were little we had to walk out of Ratatouille because it was too tense for her! She used to be scared by Spud in Bob the Builder.

We didn't force her to watch stuff to toughen her up; we let her take things at her own pace.
She's 15 now and amazingly didn't turn out to be a delicate little snowflake. Instead she's very confident and independent. And can cope with scary films that are rated suitable for her age.
She went to see It with her dad last year. When she came back she told me that it had been really good and wasn't too scary at all.

cariadlet Fri 24-Aug-18 08:19:56


Really good article. Interesting idea that we should get rid of the 12A certificate because it means young kids get to see inappropriate films, but also older teens and adults miss out because action films would be improved if they were given a 15 certificate instead of being cut to try and get a 12A certificate.

PerfectlySymmetricalButtocks Fri 24-Aug-18 09:29:42

Minty going by that, the later Harry Potters should be rated 15. So should Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children.

Roseandvioletcreams Fri 24-Aug-18 10:15:28

Interesting article I agree its more about other stuff than the shark itself.

Well my dd watched it last night nealry 11 and loved it. She really really loved it but she also loved arachnidphobia.

She was telling me all the details about sharks in the film, she adores spiders confused. She said she can see why its a huge block buster.

But I would still never ever think of showing it to any of her friends at all!!

gluteustothemaximus Fri 24-Aug-18 16:06:21

For all of those with halcyon memories of watching horror films at the age of four and emerging as marvellously balanced, fabulous individuals as a result, well done you.

But it does seem to have left many of you remarkably judgmental and determined that everyone who didn't is a pathetic, sheltered piece of shit.

Maybe it's just a coincidence.

👏 👏 👏

fanfan18 Fri 24-Aug-18 16:09:53

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

fishonabicycle Fri 24-Aug-18 16:21:30

Try not to worry. I saw it at the cinema at 10, my brother must have been 7 or 8. My son saw it when he primary school age too. It's not really a disturbing film.

cariadlet Fri 24-Aug-18 17:24:41

I saw it at the cinema at 10, my brother must have been 7 or 8. My son saw it when he primary school age too. It's not really a disturbing film.

For goodness sake, when will some posters realise that not everybody is the same.

Some kids will find Jaws entertaining, some will find it boring, some will find it funny, some will find it scary in a good way, some will find it upsetting.

If in doubt don't show a film to other people's children if it could scare them.

sendthecoffee Fri 24-Aug-18 22:05:27


Please don't patronise me. I also have a 8 year old and a 6 year old (my youngest has just turned 4, not 3 as I said - I keep forgetting!). Neither of them are scared either. They know it's not real.

They watched it because they saw it on prime and asked. As I've watched it multiple times and I know my children, I knew they would be ok, in the same way that the middle one has seen arachnophobia (although my youngest is scared of
Spiders, so I wouldn't let him). My middle one also adores the thriller video, but I know my eldest would find that scary, so I wouldn't let him watch it. It's all about knowing what your child can cope with. I wouldn't show Jaws at a sleepover because I don't know what the other children are like.

I wouldn't show them anything that I believed was inappropriate for them - violence, sex, other types of borrow, but for my kids, Jaws was fine.

Mummyoflittledragon Fri 24-Aug-18 22:17:19

I wasn’t trying to patronising you in any way. Stating that a 3 yo and a child 3 times their age cannot process visual and auditory stimuli in the same way is not patronising anyone. You actually said that you couldn’t get too worked up about it because your 3 yo watches it as though it were pas patrol. Had you talked about treating your children as individuals and not showing your middle child arachnophobia that would have been supportive of the op. I felt your post was doing the exact opposite and that you were actually patronising the op yourself.

Duskqueen Fri 24-Aug-18 22:51:46

I was about 7 when I first watched it, I loved it. It is a case of knowing the child tbh, my DD(4) wouldn't be bothered by it, but some children are more sensitive.
Although can I just add that Great Whites have been seen off the coast of the UK and can survive in our waters.

ArsenalsPlayingAtHome Fri 24-Aug-18 23:11:56

My 8 year old has watched it, and loved it but she was right next to me & was holding my at the scary bits.

I wouldn't be happy if one of my DCs had watched it at someone else's house at a sleepover. It is scary to children that age - certainly enough to give some children nightmares.

gobbin Fri 24-Aug-18 23:21:13

Lol saw the original at the cinema when I was 8 with my dad. The only thing that scared me was the head rolling out of the boat but otherwise I haven’t been left scarred 😃

wanderings Sun 26-Aug-18 20:00:07

I've just watched Jaws for the first time, and I'm "fewwwmin" at how much time I had to spend watching such dull and boring characters. I'm with Spielberg in that when he read it, he was rooting for the shark because the humans were so unlikeable. I enjoyed seeing the obviously fake shark though. If the shark could talk it might have been more entertaining!

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