Summarized by Kent Larsen
Pious Provo monitors its movies
San Diego CA Union-Tribune 5Jun00 D6
By Steve Schmidt: Staff Writer
PROVO, UTAH -- For more than 20 years the city of Provo has sponsored a
citizen's group to monitor Hollywood movies and report on the violence gore
and sex in them. The Provo Media Review Commission is made of volunteers
selected from the citizens of the predominantly Mormon city by the city
The nine commission members screen about 200 movies a year, and fill out a
checklist on each movie, detailing the amount of possibly objectionable
content in the film. The commission does not censor the movies, its purpose
is merely to provide the citizens of Provo with more information about the
movie. The checklist specifically asks if a film has material such as female
nudity, graphic sex, unmarried sex, drugs, clevage, lingerie, and other
material that might affect the decison of community members to see a film.
Andrea Bochard, one of the commission members, explains that the Hollywood
rating system (G, PG, PG-13, R, etc.) doesn't give enough information for
parents and other to make a judgement on a film. "We try to be pretty
detailed. We review it totally by content -- and we feel that that provides
a good service for the community."
The commission started in the late 1970s after the film "Looking for Mr.
Goodbar" was shown in Provo and caused a stir. The film is a violent tale of
a sexually adventurous teacher.
"Here in Utah, people are very conscientious of their children and are
family-oriented," says commission member Tara Riddle. "Because of that,
people are very careful about what their children are seeing."
More recently, the commission has developed a website, http://www.familystyle.com, where
anyone can get the commission's ratings. The site currently gets thousands
of hits a week, some from as far away as Europe.