Kids and inflight movies

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  • Brandon B
    Super Senior Member
    • Jun 2001
    • 2193

    Kids and inflight movies

    My 5 yr old kid (and wife) flew over to Japan and back for a visit while I am here, and on the way the airline (NWA) showed several inflight movies. In all cases, these were PG-13 and some of them movies I would NOT let my son watch (yet). I.E. the Hulk. Since virtually every airline shows movies, and since it is literally (by design) not possible to find a seat where the movie is not viewable, I am wondering how they reconcile this? Am I supposed to blindfold the kid? This is a flight where you are intended to spend some of the time asleep to adjust to the time difference. Are you supposed to stay awake to keep the kid from watching? Because he WANTS to watch the hulk, so saying "don't llok" doesn't really cut it.

    I realize there has to be some sort of compromise between providing worthwhile entertainment to passengers, and I am willing to bet they edit out any sexual content or avoid those movies entirely, but I personally have more of a problem with violent content being presented to my kid than sex or nudity.

    Whatch'all think? How should airlines handle this? Not real pleased with the present solution.

    BB
  • Burke Strickland
    Moderator
    • Sep 2001
    • 3161

    #2
    It has been quite a while since I've been on a flight with an inflight movie. But at that time, the "PG-13-rated" movie that they showed had been edited down to a mild "G" by the studio for the airline so they could show it on any flight without having to worry about who saw it. Of course, having cut out the "juicy" parts, they got the opposite complaint from people who wanted to see the scenes that had provoked the film's usual rating for commercial theaters.

    From your comments, I gather that if they still do this, they are not as concerned about the violent elements as they should be. I agree that depictions of excessive violence are more obscene (and potentially more harmful to young children) than healthy expressions of love, (e.g. non-porno sex). And I know kids hear a lot of "language" before the age of 13. :>)

    I think that instead of having "big screens" viewable from many seats including those accomodating children under 13, they should have individual-sized screens at each seat like portable DVD players have, and offer a range of movies that would include at least one "G" rated film for the younger children as well as the more mature fare they show for older kids and adults.

    Short of that, an alternative could be for parents to bring along a portable DVD player or notebook computer with DVD-ROM and a couple of G-rated movie discs and have your own show for the younger kids while the airline entertains the older kids and adults. If they are watching an entertaining movie that they really want to see, the kids wouldn't be quite as tempted to follow the "action" on the big screen.

    Burke

    What you DON'T say may be held against you...

    Comment

    • George Bellefontaine
      Moderator Emeritus
      • Jan 2001
      • 7637

      #3
      Good suggestion, Burke.

      As for the airlines. Guess it's difficult for them to choose. They could show only Disney but the majority of passengers would probably revolt. They probably try for something in the middle and hope to please everyone.




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      • Gordon Moore
        Moderator Emeritus
        • Feb 2002
        • 3188

        #4
        Short of that, an alternative could be for parents to bring along a portable DVD player or notebook computer with DVD-ROM and a couple of G-rated movie discs and have your own show for the younger kids while the airline entertains the older kids and adults.
        Not bad, but I think the airline could even offer this service for the long flights. I noticed when I stopped over in Calgary recently that dvd portables are rentable now (from a third party)...you just drop them off when your flight is done.

        This is one situtation where I can't really fault the airline for showing a blockbuster that's pg-13 and under to appease the majority of adult passengers (just my opinion). Mom and Dad just have to be diligent in keeping their son or daughter busy during the movie I guess. That would/does suck especially where you have no other option but to fly (as was your case).

        Are you supposed to stay awake to keep the kid from watching? Because he WANTS to watch the hulk, so saying "don't llok" doesn't really cut it.
        I don't think you have a choice here (in this case), esecially if you don't want them to watch. I'm not sure what else you could do.

        I've never taken my kids on a flight that long (nor will I try to...mostly because I hate flying) but I guess you could take their headphones away to start. The absense of sound makes a person lose interest in a movie pretty quickly. Lots of comics, books, drawings, colouring, crafts, cd-players, games, etc...would have to suffice.

        Hey we all survived those long road trips without DVD players Lots of license plate crib and poker as I recall.

        I totally know where you're coming from though...it does draw an interesting conundrum because the same kids shouldn't technically get into those movies at the theater. With the tight margins that airlines are experiencing now (the market sucks for the big boys....trust me) there's no way they're going to have a "kid friendly" section.

        No clear cut answers....




        "A RONSTER!"
        Sell crazy someplace else, we're all stocked up here.

        Comment

        • Gordon Moore
          Moderator Emeritus
          • Feb 2002
          • 3188

          #5
          think that instead of having "big screens" viewable from many seats including those accomodating children under 13, they should have individual-sized screens at each seat like portable DVD players have, and offer a range of movies that would include at least one "G" rated film for the younger children as well as the more mature fare they show for older kids and adults.
          That's an awesome suggestion and cost is probably the biggest reason why they don't do it. Personally they should do that and chuck those stupid phones. No one makes a call from the air at their outrageous prices.

          I guess one or 2 lawsuits would change the airlines thinking....but watch ticket prices rise as a result. You know they would use that excuse :roll:

          again no clear cut answers...

          The problem is that the "no frills" airlines are the ones making the money right now.

          I basing this all with a Canadian slant as I have no insight on the American airline market.




          "A RONSTER!"
          Sell crazy someplace else, we're all stocked up here.

          Comment

          • Brandon B
            Super Senior Member
            • Jun 2001
            • 2193

            #6
            Originally posted by Gordon Moore
            Are you supposed to stay awake to keep the kid from watching? Because he WANTS to watch the hulk, so saying "don't look" doesn't really cut it.
            I don't think you have a choice here (in this case), especially if you don't want them to watch. I'm not sure what else you could do.
            No clear cut answers....
            On the headphone thing, he wasn't wearing them, but he could still see (some, he's 5 and can't see too well over the seats in front of him).

            On the staying awake and monitoring where his eyes go, that is virtually impossible.

            On the individual monitors for each seat, many airlines DO have that exact setup, but not the airline of (mandatory) choice at my company.

            On the kids not being allowed into the same movies, since children are almost universally accompanied by their guardians onto airplanes, they are in effect seing the movies with parental permission and oversight, so that is how they get around that.

            I think the individual monitors at each seat is the best solution, and given a choice of airlines, I would pay a little extra for it. Singapore has had that for 8 years plus, even in coach. Has a selection of video games as well.

            I guess what I would like to see at a minimum is that when you purchase a childs ticket, they state "we will be showing such and such movie which is rated ** during this flight. Make your arrangements accordingly.

            They don't do that. You are generally unable to determine what the movie(s) are until you have been seated, or at least arrived the day of your flight.

            BB

            Comment

            • Lex
              Moderator Emeritus
              • Apr 2001
              • 27461

              #7
              Let's face it, when your in the air, your not doing critical viewing. Your flat out just killing time. Adults can kill time with Lassie episodes, as well as anything. So, why not keep it kid friendly? I like the back of the seat in front of you monitor idea, or at least a number of portables able to be checked out with a selection of kid friendly software. I agree with langauge, violence, and sex content, the total age of the air travelers must be considered.

              Lex
              Doug
              "I'm out there Jerry, and I'm loving every minute of it!" - Kramer

              Comment

              • ThomasW
                Moderator Emeritus
                • Aug 2000
                • 10934

                #8
                Other than putting their head in a bag (ala prisoners in US military custody); the only viable options are to let them watch and discuss what they see. Or buy a portable DVD player and carry a selection of 'appropriate' movies or video games. In other words provide an alternative MORE attractive than the in-flight movie.

                Kids do have a good ability to discriminate 'cartoon' violence from the real thing, unfortunately some movies are amazingly realistic. That's when the old "it's only make-believe/pretend" explaination is appropriate for movies or TV.

                As for the minimal amount of sexual content shown in PG-13 flicks, that's not something kids need to be shielded from. Until puberity 'hits' sexual content isn't something 'children' find interesting or entertaining. And unless parents reinforce nudity/sexuality as something inherently 'bad', seeing a human breast or whatever, isn't and shouldn't be a big deal.

                Of course all this is just my opinion, but it's based on a having spent decades working in psych.....




                theAudioWorx
                Klone-Audio

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                Comment

                • gd
                  Senior Member
                  • Jan 2003
                  • 583

                  #9
                  Originally posted by Brandon B
                  I think the individual monitors at each seat is the best solution... I would pay a little extra for it... would like to see at a minimum is that when you purchase a childs ticket, they state "we will be showing such and such movie which is rated ** during this flight.
                  I don't have kids, but I'm not unsympathetic to your concerns... nonetheless, if airlines implement extra services such as those, my ticket prices go up... again I'm sympathetic, but I can't pay money for your personal comfort level in movies... since you're willing to pay extra, seems the easiest, cheapest fix for everybody is for you to obtain a portable DVD player.

                  Adding amenities doesn't fix the biggest problem: flying is an expensive, uncomfortable, inconvenient Pain In The ***.

                  Edited for the kids
                  .
                  greg (gd to you)
                  .
                  Without music to decorate it, time is just a bunch of boring
                  production deadlines or dates by which bills must be paid.

                  Frank Zappa

                  Comment

                  • Lex
                    Moderator Emeritus
                    • Apr 2001
                    • 27461

                    #10
                    Well, individual setups won't be cheap, but neither are projectors, and projector maintenance. historically, I imagine they've used CRTs. Maybe now, they are going digital, I don't know. At any rate, the addition of a few portable DVD players will hardly break tix pricing compared to the cost of replacing a jet engine or even fuel costs, it's a drop in the bucket.

                    HAHA on your edit for kids.

                    Thomas, you made some valid points. Everyone has really.

                    Lex
                    Doug
                    "I'm out there Jerry, and I'm loving every minute of it!" - Kramer

                    Comment

                    • Brandon B
                      Super Senior Member
                      • Jun 2001
                      • 2193

                      #11
                      I agree you should not have to pay anything extra for my kid. But a lot of airlines already have the individual monitors per seat. Singapore, Air New Zealand, JAL, and a few others I've flown.

                      And I don't mind mild sexual content, even for my five year old, as it only harms me (stress from figuring out how to explain it).

                      But as Thomas says, they edit out anything which might REMOTELY be considered R rated sexually, as they'd surely catch hell for that from someone. It's the violence I have a problem with. The Hulk is the most meaningful example. I have the DVD at home waiting to watch, and my kid was basicall able to see most of the movie on the plane, and knows we have it, but I had previously told him he would not be allowed to watch any but a few short parts I prescreened and chose so he could at least see the CGI FX. Now I have to give him a logical reason why when he's seen most of it. And his logic is relentless, for an adult, let alone a five year old.

                      Basically, no one here has said anything I disagree with. I was just bringing it up as it never occurred to me before, as most of the flying he's done before was at a younger age where he didn't focus much on a movie, and they didn't show PG 13 stuff on the more recent trips.

                      BB

                      Comment

                      • Ducan
                        Junior Member
                        • Nov 2003
                        • 8

                        #12
                        I think that instead of having "big screens" viewable from many seats including those accomodating children under 13, they should have individual-sized screens at each seat like portable DVD players have, and offer a range of movies that would include at least one "G" rated film for the younger children as well as the more mature fare they show for older kids and adults.
                        I flew on an international flight with Contenental Airlines this summer and they actually had small screens for every seat. They have been doing this in first class since at least 96' but i was rather suprised they had it for coach. There were about 8 channels or so with various movies and blocks of TV shows to choose from. The movies were also heavily edited for content.

                        Comment

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