MOVIE HOR­ROR OVER THE TOP

STOP MOLLYCODDL­ING OUR YOUNG BE­CAUSE THEY ARE SMARTER THAN YOU THINK AND KNOW WHAT’S REAL AND WHAT ISN’T

Life & Style Weekend - - TUGBOAT TALES - WORDS: ASH­LEY ROBIN­SON

Isaw a post on Face­book this week about a par­ent who was con­cerned that her 11-year-old had a sleep­over and part of the fun was watch­ing a scary movie for 15-plus.

Mum was not happy and pon­der­ing tak­ing it up with the par­ents in charge of the sleep­over.

A few folk were wor­ried about per­ma­nent dam­age to the 11-year-old hav­ing to sit through some gory movie.

One com­ment was ba­si­cally they would be scarred for life.

I can see their point but I am afraid I was sub­jected to it as a child and then un­wit­tingly passed that legacy on to my kids.

When I was a kid I was sub­jected to re­runs of Drac­ula at a pretty young age but prob­a­bly my first real last­ing im­pres­sion was when I snuck into the pic­tures to see Mid­night Cow­boy think­ing it was a western – not ac­tu­ally a story about male pros­ti­tu­tion, among other things.

So to an­swer the con­cerned par­ents con­cerns on Face­book, I didn’t rush out and give it a try, thank­fully, as I prob­a­bly wouldn’t have had a rag­ing busi­ness.

Next test was when I was in my early teens and went and saw The Ex­or­cist.

I ac­tu­ally had to sleep un­der my brother’s bed that night I was that scared when I got home.

So in this par­tic­u­lar case I can see the con­cerned par­ents’ point of view.

Again when The Omen came out, par­tic­u­larly Damien, I was quite rat­tled as well and at that stage I was driv­ing.

When it comes to my kids, two in­ci­dents stand out.

One was when Lu­cas was about three.

I was babysit­ting dur­ing the week, it was pour­ing rain and we were watch­ing Sesame Street and the idiot box blew up and he started cry­ing shortly af­ter.

In panic mode we rushed off to Re­trav­i­sion and bought a state-of-the-art Sharp stereo TV on the nearly maxed out bankcard.

We rushed home, plugged it all in just in time for the mid­day movie – Monty Python and the Holy Grail, a classic, which in hind­sight was not such a good gig for a three-year-old with an open­ing scene of “bring out your dead”.

And my per­sonal favourite with the sword fight scene where the knight ends up with no arms or legs and blood ev­ery­where. Again not great.

I sup­pose it was funny to an im­ma­ture 26-year-old and a three-year-old but I do think he fully un­der­stood it was non­sense and I don’t re­mem­ber him try­ing to dis­em­bowel any of his kinder­garten mates af­ter he saw the movie.

Nor did he try and fire any cows out of a cat­a­pult.

Maybe a year or so af­ter I came home from footy train­ing, pos­si­bly a cou­ple of beers later than I should have, and the babysit­ter was just fin­ish­ing up with a nice movie they had just watched – Preda­tor.

This fea­tured Arnold Sch­warzeneg­ger, re­ally big knives and some sort of alien mon­ster.

Again it didn’t seem to have any im­pact on the young mind as he pretty much knew it was pre­tend, which I guess means he was far more evolved than me when I was a kid but I sup­pose that wouldn’t be hard. I think the Face­book debate should be more wor­ried about

11-year-olds watch­ing Ques­tion Time in Par­lia­ment or pre-elec­tion cov­er­age. Both are far more dam­ag­ing in my opin­ion.

I AC­TU­ALLY HAD TO SLEEP UN­DER MY BROTHER’S BED THAT NIGHT I WAS THAT SCARED WHEN I GOT HOME.

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