The sanitized "more killing, less gore" world of PG-13 remakes


Can’t wait to see the PG13 remake of Flesh+Blood. I’m sure I can spare ten minutes.

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I thought movies like the Hostel series and the Saw series were far more gory and bloody than anything from the past.

It’s purely a business decision, and it’s unfortunate.

The documentary This Film Not Yet Rated does an excellent job explaining some of the problems the industry is faced with, and also details how a very small group of people get to decide what is appropriate for audiences without any oversight or accountability. Another potential problem the doc presents is that it forces movies to present unrealistic consequences of violence, downplaying what really happens in this type of situation.


It’s all very unfortunate. The remakes erase the obvious consequence of violence, making it seem okay.

Also, the remakes suck.

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You know I thought the same thing, and for a long time I avoided these films, then one day, a friend put on Saw.

It was dumb and ridiculous and bad but nowhere near what I was expecting as far as gore, Any full moon production from back in the day was way gorier than these watered down “horror” films.
I’ve since seen part of the hostel films and wasn’t impressed either.
The biggest difference I could see was that the whole point of these movies was to feed some sort of morbid curiosity that I could not find in myself, the idea that you are going to see a movie whose only point is watching people die in “horrible” ways. Disguised as a power fantasy.

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Ay Caramba!

I would rather have more gore with less killing. Kind of like those PSAs showing teens drooling and being fed pablum by their mothers while lying in a hospital bed, with the tag line “not everyone dies from an accidental overdose” or some such. Show how bloody and painful a non-lethal gunshot wound is. Show how noisy and messy and mistake-prone it is to attack people, no matter how well trained you are. Show people screaming in pain and writhing around, not quietly dying after some last bon mot.


My kid is an anime fan, and we’ve noticed this. In the very most popular boys’ anime, nobody ever dies - they just fall down, really tired, and mutter, “impossible!” But there’s also adult anime that’s very very disturbing, surreal and gender-bent and sometimes quite gory. Can you imagine that on American TV?


Which is even more frustrating when you consider that in the film they also point out that it’s much easier to get violence by the ratings board than sex, particularly if that sex scene focuses on a woman’s enjoyment, (i.e. cunnilingus scenes etc.). This is why we can’t have nice things. Le sigh.


I’ve always lamented the loss of the olden TV edits of films. in the 70s or 80s, you COULD see a rated R film cut to ribbons as a 12 year old kid. It was great! Now, competing with cable, I doubt the commercial networks edit them in the same way…

I’m reminded of an episode of MAS*H where a bomber pilot ends up being treated at the 407 and actually gets exposed to the carnage of the front lines firsthand, turning what before were remote little specks all the way down on the ground into actual flesh and blood human beings being blown to pieces.

It’s easy to ignore or rationalize something as horrendous as killing when you’re distanced from it. Curious how we stopped televising our wars, eh? No more embedded journalists showing the masses the horrors of war - the suffering of both sides, even - just the occasional brusque news report “…another round of deployment in Iraq this month…”, or “…a half dozen militants were killed in a precision strike…”, or any of countless other technically accurate but soulless reports that don’t actually convey the true, terrible meaning of what has happened.

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The article itself reminds me of a refrain from Lard’s The Power of Lard:

The country right now
It wants to be soothed
And told it doesn’t have to pay
Or sacrifice or learn

It’s my suspicion that most of the public just want to be distracted, rather than challenged (and they have enough challenges to deal with in the day, thank you very much.) Hollywood, that bloated, doddering ouroboros, is just defecating the art that people want, or are told that they want, I’m not sure which.

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