Study: Children's films have higher death rates than adult movies

SNCommand

New member
Aug 29, 2011
283
0
0
Hubblignush said:
kids don't care about writing, plot, characters and all that, they just want the colors and see the good guys win (which worryingly could be said for the majority here, ugh), thus an extremely simple and cheap way to hook small children into a movie is simply by killing someone the protagonist cares about.
What an extremely generalizing statement
 

SNCommand

New member
Aug 29, 2011
283
0
0
Hubblignush said:
SNCommand said:
Hubblignush said:
kids don't care about writing, plot, characters and all that, they just want the colors and see the good guys win (which worryingly could be said for the majority here, ugh), thus an extremely simple and cheap way to hook small children into a movie is simply by killing someone the protagonist cares about.
What an extremely generalizing statement
About kids? Yeah, there's probably some kids out there who appreciates more adults movies, but they're a tiny minority. It's like saying "playing piano is extremely difficult, especially for children who haven't practiced all that much", sure some kids learnt it really quickly, most don't ever. It's a statement that's tru for the major majority, the ones it desn't apply do is so tiny that mentioned them is a bit for naught.
Well kids for one, I don't know what kind of kids you hang around, but the ones I know and have known usually have about as sophisticated taste as adults, they usually enjoy the same things, perhaps not if they're 5 or younger, but above that they have always seemed as diverse in taste and opinion as adults

Secondly I'm wondering what you consider adults movies and what you consider kids movies, people usually differ in opinion in that regard
 

happyninja42

Elite Member
Legacy
May 7, 2020
8,577
2,934
118
CaitSeith said:
What do you think? Is it funny, shocking or you just don't care? (personally I think it's funny)
It makes sense to me, when you have a story centered around a child running around doing stuff they shouldn't be doing, you have to get rid of the parents. If there are adults around, and they're not locking the kids up for going off on some damn fool idealistic crusade, then they look stupid or incompetent. So yeah, they gotta' die to give the children the freedom to be a protagonist in a story.

I mean look at the adults in the Harry Potter series, they are always inept, and totally unable to actually protect the children from the various threats, so that Harry and his friends can go save the day. And they looked like fools for the majority of the book series as a result. It's the same thing.
 

SNCommand

New member
Aug 29, 2011
283
0
0
Hubblignush said:
SNCommand said:
Hubblignush said:
SNCommand said:
Hubblignush said:
kids don't care about writing, plot, characters and all that, they just want the colors and see the good guys win (which worryingly could be said for the majority here, ugh), thus an extremely simple and cheap way to hook small children into a movie is simply by killing someone the protagonist cares about.
What an extremely generalizing statement
About kids? Yeah, there's probably some kids out there who appreciates more adults movies, but they're a tiny minority. It's like saying "playing piano is extremely difficult, especially for children who haven't practiced all that much", sure some kids learnt it really quickly, most don't ever. It's a statement that's tru for the major majority, the ones it desn't apply do is so tiny that mentioned them is a bit for naught.
Well kids for one, I don't know what kind of kids you hang around, but the ones I know and have known usually have about as sophisticated taste as adults, they usually enjoy the same things, perhaps not if they're 5 or younger, but above that they have always seemed as diverse in taste and opinion as adults

Secondly I'm wondering what you consider adults movies and what you consider kids movies, people usually differ in opinion in that regard
Well, depends also what kind of adults you hang out with as well.

For "adult" movies, I'd say things like Kubrick, Coppola, Fincher, Scorcese, Hitchcock, Kurosawa, Modern korean cinema, Leone and those guys. Foreign movies, dramas, thrillers, stuff like that. Stuff that are made mainly for adults. Not saying adults can't enjoy other things (I'm not a filmsnob by any means), but I don't think I've met any kids (kids meaning 12 and below) who've willingly put on a Kurosawa movie with their friends (for enjoying Kurosawa, not just wanting to see what the fuss is about).
Well yeah, but there's the thing, you said kids movies kill main characters more because it's a cheap way to create drama, but all the directors you listed off their characters so regularly you would think it was their hobby

Now I can't say for certain what the parameters of the study in question is, but I'm fairly certain it doesn't imply killing important characters is something that's cheap or lazy, most likely kids movies kill important characters because they aspire to not be judged only as kids movies, and who knows what the study qualifies as "kids movies", could very likely be that it judges all movies rated PG-13 as for kids, or if the movie isn't live action it's for kids
 

CaitSeith

Formely Gone Gonzo
Legacy
Apr 14, 2020
5,231
239
68
CommanderZx2 said:
I couldn't find the actual study in question on that site, so I have a question for you... What does this study define as 'Children's films'? If they mean PG13, well the reason there's so much death in those movies is due to producers cutting their action movies from an R to a PG13 for a larger target audience.

In the past when it was an action movie they'd almost always go for the blood, gore and nudity with the R rating, because they were targeting adults as they should do. Now a days with the much greater costs of films it has become all about the money. Therefore taking movies that should actually be aimed at adults and cutting to movie to fit within the limits of the PG13.
Sorry. The link is fixed now. The films were included if they received a genre tag of "animation" by the Internet Movie Database and received a film rating of "G-general audience" or "PG-parental guidance suggested."
 

CaitSeith

Formely Gone Gonzo
Legacy
Apr 14, 2020
5,231
239
68
FirstNameLastName said:
The title seems somewhat misleading, it seems to refer to protagonist deaths or deaths of major characters, not just deaths in general. Although the link doesn't seem to work, so i can't verify.

This isn't all that surprising, given the results all it really seems to say is "children's movies often kill off the parents," for reasons others have already pointed out.
Sorry, the link is now fixed. It refers to important characters.
 

Raggedstar

New member
Jul 5, 2011
753
0
0
I think I read the article recently. An interesting finding, though not surprising.

Eclipse Dragon said:
Watership Down, Felidae[footnote]I don't know if these two are actually meant for children...[/footnote]
You know, when I woke up this morning and browsed The Escapist, I didn't think I would see someone mention Felidae of all films. I like it, and it's a bit obscure, so it's a bit of a rarity I see someone mention it. Internet cookie for you. Regarding whether it's a children's film, I honestly don't know. I think it's rated 12+ in some countries (PG?) though with the subject matter, gore, etc, I'm not 100% sure what the target audience is. My Watership Down DVD also says PG, though it's also a much older film. But then again, my favourite movie is All Dogs Go To Heaven, and it sports a G rating despite a scene where the character gets dragged to hell and tormented by demons (among other more "adult" subject matter like smoking, murder, gambling, drinking, etc).

Speaking of All Dogs Go To Heaven, the main character dies twice in that movie (once within the first 20 minutes, and again at the end). That must bugger up the list lol.
 

Ten Foot Bunny

I'm more of a dishwasher girl
Mar 19, 2014
807
0
0
Slippery slope, people... our grandparents didn't stand up to Bambi's mother dying, and look where it landed us. Bravo!

Queen Michael said:
Well, that's a given, innit? Adult movies only contain "the little death."
Erectile dysfunction? o_O
 

Story

Note to self: Prooof reed posts
Sep 4, 2013
905
0
0
I haven't read any of the posts before me so I might be reiterating what some have said already but...I'm not surprised for two reasons.

First is that children's films often have a good vs evil binary in which the ultimate price for the bad guy is to be gone for good e.i die. This makes sense given that if the bad guy lived it would most likely scare the children in the audience. Usually these villains do something so unforgivable to lazily establish themselves as the big bad to the younger audience. "They killed someone? Well, I guess they can die too then it is only fair right"? Plus, it prevents complications of villains actually reforming or being in a gray area all along as to not confuse the kiddies.

Secondly, family members or friends usually die in these films because that is something the audience can easily relate to. This is very true for children who know nothing else in life but family and friends. These characters are usually main characters too with a fair amount of speaking lines so there is just enough character establishment to make their lost relatable to the audience. What will the emotional conflict be otherwise? They risk losing their job so they can't support their family? They become handicapped in someway for life? I'm sure those things have happened before but not at all surprising script writers would choose the close person dying over any other more complicated conflicts.
Personally? I think family films do this nowadays to seem like a good movie, though if not done right it feels cheap. I'm looking at you, Free Birds.

Frankly I'm having a hard time not thinking of a children's movie where a character didn't die in some way. I just watched The Croods and Free Birds yesterday and both had people die in some fashion. Hmm I think the Aristocats avoided this, Disney's Hercules too, I'll have to take a look.
 

Random Gamer

New member
Sep 8, 2014
165
0
0
Children movies are also closer to fairy tales and traditional myths, and both are fairly heavy in deaths. Sure, you can find sanitized book versions of them, but if you go for the real deal - as anyone should do, as far as I'm concerned -, then you'll have your share of violence and deaths.

As far as I'm concerned, the weird and puzzling thing in all that is the tendency to want to shield kids from all bad aspects of the wide world, no violence, no fight, no war, no death.
 

NerAnima

New member
Jun 29, 2013
103
0
0
Story said:
Snip snip, here we go!
You are quite correct, the Aristocats didn't have murder, but it did involve kidnapping, just like Hercules.
But yeah, Disney has done that a lot, I think Princess and the Frog had the dead parents thing, as well, not sure, someone let me know if I'm wrong, and Frozen, well...

Still, Disney has made it work, at the least, even if the death toll in the House of Mouse is far too high to be normal.
 

Story

Note to self: Prooof reed posts
Sep 4, 2013
905
0
0
NerAnima said:
Story said:
Snip snip, here we go!
You are quite correct, the Aristocats didn't have murder, but it did involve kidnapping, just like Hercules.
But yeah, Disney has done that a lot, I think Princess and the Frog had the dead parents thing, as well, not sure, someone let me know if I'm wrong, and Frozen, well...

Still, Disney has made it work, at the least, even if the death toll in the House of Mouse is far too high to be normal.
Yeah Princess and the Frog had the dad die, though not a main character. It can also be argued that the main villain died or met a fate worse than death as well. I do agree that Disney does a nice job of it.
I bit unrelated, but I was also gonna say Being a bit genre aware can hurt too. I guess it depends on the person, but after you've seen enough children's films it can be a bit obvious whose gonna go if anyone does. How to train Your Dragon 2 was a "really good" (a.k.a obvious) example of this.

Edit:
Oh, yeah that's right The Princess and the Frog had the firefly die, which to make me sound completely hypocritical, really pissed me off. That's actually an example of how not to handle the death of a main character, IMO.
 

theNater

New member
Feb 11, 2011
227
0
0
I object to their methodology; in particular how they select comparison movies. From the study:
The comparison films consisted of the two highest box office grossing films in the same year of release as each animated film, excluding sequels, that received a genre tag of "drama" by the Internet Movie Database. We reasoned that these films were more likely to be viewed solely by adult audiences. In cases in which more than one animated film for a given release year was included, we also selected the next two top grossing dramatic films of that year (for instance, third and fourth) for comparison. We excluded films that were additionally tagged with "action" or "adventure" because they are often also marketed to, and viewed by, young children.
This means that in 2010, they included Eat, Pray, Love and Dear John over things like Inception, the Expendables, and the Twilight movie that came out that year. I strongly suspect none of those were marketed to, or widely viewed by, young children.

I think this is some pretty severe selection bias; the choice of tags for films for adult audiences is almost exactly what I'd choose if I were trying to find non-violent films.
 

Gordon_4_v1legacy

New member
Aug 22, 2010
2,577
0
0
IndianaJonny said:
I wonder if, over time, the crackdown on these themes in kid's TV has been more strict than in films?

Some of the best TV from my youth was littered with 'fatalities'... and the occasional suicide bomber:

Ahh, Gerry Anderson - God love that mad bastard. Captain Scarlet forever!

Ten Foot Bunny said:
Erectile dysfunction? o_O
The little death is a euphemism, primarily I think in France, for orgasm.