Tuesday, June 30, 2020

British Movie-Streaming Service To Apply "Outdated Attitudes" Warnings

              The British movie-streaming service Sky has demonstrated its woke bona fides by slapping “outdated attitudes” content warnings on numerous movie titles in this era of heightened cultural sensitivity. This, of course, was done in an attempt to get ahead of any potential backlash, something very hard to do at the moment. For example, a description on the Disney animated classic “The Jungle Book” now reads, “This film has outdated attitudes, language and cultural depictions which may cause offence today.”

              A spokesperson for the service told Variety: “Sky is committed to supporting anti-racism and improving diversity and inclusion both on and off screen. We constantly review all content on Sky’s owned channels and will take action where necessary including adding additional information for our customer to allow them to make an informed decision when deciding what films and TV shows to watch.” Sky has reportedly committed to spending 10 million British pounds, the equivalent of 12 million U.S. dollars, in support of anti-racism and inclusion efforts throughout the company.

              Many other films have been subjected to the dreaded outdated attitudes warning, including “Gone with the Wind,” “Aladdin,” “Lawrence of Arabia,” and “Flash Gordon.” (Apparently, “Flesh Gordon” was deemed inoffensive.)

              Soon all broadcast and cable television stations and networks, streaming services, and online video providers will be utilizing similar “outdated attitudes” warnings. The beloved early American sitcom “Leave it to Beaver,” a show that aired in the 1950s and 1960s, will surely get an outdated attitudes warning attached to it. Many today could be offended by its depictions of decency, civility and respect for elders and authority. Another television show, “Hill Street Blues,” would be labeled as potentially offensive for its portrayal of some cops as human and well-intentioned. The formerly iconic movie “The Ten Commandments” content warning would center around its appalling depiction of Biblical events as real and somehow useful and/or instructional. It is also potentially triggering to Muslims. Disney’s “Pinocchio” will get the caution due to its stereotypical depiction of Italian inventors and its exploitation of marionettes and those with extendable noses.

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