By all accounts, Fifty Shade of Grey is not nearly as titillating as you’d expect for a movie about kinky sex and S&M. However, that doesn’t mean you should take your kids to go see it. Unless you live in France.
Apparently overcome by ennui and convinced that life is ultimately meaningless, the French National Film Board has rated Fifty Shades of Grey PG-12. That means anyone 13 and up can buy and ticket and watch Jamie Dornan whip Dakota Johnson with a riding crop, tie her up, and do her from behind.
The Film Board’s reasoning? “It’s really a romance, we could even call it a bleuette — a sentimental tale,” their Jean-François Mary explained, probably while wearing a beret and smoking a cigarette. “The director handled the sex scenes very skillfully and limited them to the bare minimum. It’s more the subject itself, this SM relationship, which pushed us to restrict the movie for audiences under 12.”
In case you were wondering, pretty much everyone else in the world has given Fifty Shades of Grey a much stronger rating. In the U.S., English-speaking Canada, and Great Britain you have to be 18. Hell, even the Francophones in Quebec say you have to be at least 16, while the always-permissive Netherlands says you have to be at least 15.
Way to go, France.