New Jack City: Provocative ‘BLUE VALENTINE’ Brings NC-17 Test to K.C.

The WEINSTEIN COMPANY was facing a dilemma…

A particularily steamy scene in their new relationship drama BLUE VALENTINE was about to trigger the dreaded NC-17 designation by the Motion Picture Association of America’s ratings board for the film.

Essentially the company had three choices.

A—Accept it and bring out the movie as is with an NC-17 rating, resulting in a much more restricted release pattern.
B—Release it completely unrated.
C—Make a few strategic cuts and get it re-rated to an R, and thus having no problems getting it exhibited.

Weinstein opted for none of the above.

Instead the company turned to one of the industry’s favorite national test cities—Kansas City—-to have us help make the proper rating’s decision.

How they did it?

Several months ago the film company’s local PR agency quietly recruited an audience for a special advance screening of BLUE VALENTINE at AMC’s Ward Parkway Theater. The screening allegedly was also attended by members of Weinstein’s team and legal eagles.

Following the screening, the invited crowd was polled as to the film’s potential rating and other personal insights into the movie.
Should it be relegated to an NC-17 or should this emotionally provocative love story go into the marketplace as an R and make its mature storyline more easily accessible to adult audiences?

Guess what? Kansas City surprised by overwhelmingly choosing the latter!

So with this midwestern polling in tow, the Weinstein Company was able to convince the MPAA to reconsider its NC-17 ruling and instead bless the film with a far less restrictive R rating.

Without making any cuts!


So what’s BLUE VALENTINE all about? It’s a marital drama starring Michelle (Brokeback Mountain) Williams and Ryan Gosling.
An honest portrait of love found and love lost as told in past and present moments in time. And their one night to try to save their crumbling marriage.

Ms. Williams received a BEST ACTRESS Oscar nomination for her performance in the film earlier this week.

The intense and emotional drama returns this weekend to its home away from home as an R-rated, semi-exclusive engagement.

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5 Responses to New Jack City: Provocative ‘BLUE VALENTINE’ Brings NC-17 Test to K.C.

  1. gene says:

    I’ve heard a lot about this movie. When is it opening in KC?

  2. Cliffy says:

    Interesting ….
    Reminds me of when Midnight Cowboy got socked with an X rating when it was first released. The movie barely had any nudity, although the sex and drugs theme was kind of shocking back then. It was later rated R when it received a Best Pic nomination.

    Is NC-17 as far as the rating system goes now?

  3. Test subject says:

    Really? What other tests have been run here?
    “Instead the company turned to one of the industry’s favorite national test cities—Kansas City—-to have us help make the proper rating’s decision””

    Really? I was not aware of this, but it is good news (news to me anyway, I was ignorant)…. Would you please tell us more about how we are a test city? I thought they always called ” flyover country”, with litle respect given to KC et al.

    What other tests have been run here? Jack, were you invited to this test? How do we get invited to these tests?

  4. jack p. says:

    NO KANSAS CITY opening date set for the film according the distributor’s rep.
    You’ll have to cross the state line if you want to see it.
    It’s supposedly opening this Friday in Leawood, Ks and Overland Park only!
    (…as in AMC Town Center and Glenwood Arts Theater.)

  5. Stevo says:

    Totally unwarranted
    Saw this movie…really good acting although Ryan Gosling will annoy the shit out of you the entire time. Totally clueless how this could get a NC 17 and movies like Hostel or Saw can get an R. It doesn’t make any sense. There’s some nudity but it’s not exploitative at all. I’d say Black Swan was at least its equal in explicit scenes. Movie is worth seeing in my opinion. I’d give it a solid B to B-. A better one that may be out now is Welcome to the Rileys.

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