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Posted 24 Feb 2001   For week ended June 11, 2000
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Sent on Mormon-News: 06Jun00

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 council.

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,, where anyone can get the commission's ratings. The site currently gets thousands of hits a week, some from as far away as Europe.


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