Bart Simpson and Tarzan, as nature made them

Speaking of nudity and ratings, check out this bit of hyperbole from a recent Newsweek story on The Simpsons Movie:

To make it on the big screen, you have to give people something spectacular. Something extraordinary. Something like Bart Simpson—full frontal. It happens early in “The Simpsons Movie,” when the animated 10-year-old takes a dare from his goofball father, Homer, to skateboard naked through the streets of Springfield. Hidden by plants and picket fences, he whizzes along, past kids, down hills, through traffic lights, until, in one shocking moment, little Bart flashes his little part to the entire world. Which may make this the first Hollywood film to show that kind of skin and to escape an R rating.

Um, well, not exactly. Allow me to present two slightly censored images from a film that was one of my favorites in my younger days, Greystoke: The Legend of Tarzan, Lord of the Apes (1984). Here is Tarzan at the age of 5, after an ape knocks him down …

… and at the age of 12, after he has learned how to use a knife:

The rating on this film? PG. Though admittedly, it came out before the PG-13 was invented. But either way, it wasn’t rated R.

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About Peter T. Chattaway

Peter T. Chattaway was the regular film critic for BC Christian News from 1992 to 2011. In addition to his film column, which won multiple awards from the Evangelical Press Association, the Canadian Church Press and the Fellowship of Christian Newspapers, his news and opinion pieces have appeared in such publications as Books & Culture, Christianity Today, Bible Review and the Vancouver Sun. He also contributed essays to the books Re-Viewing The Passion: Mel Gibson’s Film and Its Critics (Palgrave Macmillan, 2004) and Scandalizing Jesus?: Kazantzakis’s The Last Temptation of Christ Fifty Years on (Continuum, 2005).

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