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Some give Jet Li a round of applause:
June 24, 2001 2:55 PM   Subscribe

Some give Jet Li a round of applause: In a gesture uncommon for any Hollywood player, martial arts master and action hero Jet Li asked fans not to bring their young children to see his upcoming feature "Kiss of the Dragon." The 38-year-old Chinese star wrote on his Web site (JetLi.com) that the R-rated film is "an adult movie and deals with adult themes," with action sequences geared towards an adult audience. "The movie utilizes very realistic, hard-core, action-packed fight sequences. I'm very proud of the final result and hope that my fans enjoy the movie, however, this is a movie that I do not feel is appropriate for children," Li wrote. "

heh, that's enough to justify me forking over my $5.50 over to Jet Li.
posted by adnan (28 comments total)


 
oops. got the url wrong. it's jetli.com
posted by adnan at 2:56 PM on June 24, 2001


why is it that actor and musician websites are always so terrible? they always have a splash page, they're always terribly organized, they have no problem adding a section that says "coming soon!", etc. it's as if there is one really, really bad designer doing sites for everyone in hollywood.

in any case, I couldn't find this request anywhere on the site. can you point us to it? - rcb
posted by rebeccablood at 3:02 PM on June 24, 2001


In other news, Kevin Costner has apologized for ever appearing in anything ever, and has promised to keep a lid on it from now on.

Yea, more responsible Hollywood!
posted by dong_resin at 3:06 PM on June 24, 2001


This movie is R rated. What is Jet Li saying that the MPAA isn't? Nothing. I guess its very unstylish to ask people to pay attention to the movie ratings.

Not that I prefer the MPAA's assumption that a nipple is much worse for youngsters than a few dozen murders, but I'd rather do without 'ethics after wealth' i.e. post lethal weapon 4 Jet Li, telling me whats good for me while the MPAA shoves it down my throat already.
posted by skallas at 3:07 PM on June 24, 2001


$5.50, where do you live?!
posted by FPN at 3:18 PM on June 24, 2001


Well, I see it this way: if he'd had just said "I request that parents do not bring their kids to this R-rated film", it might be admirable, but nooooo, he goes on to say it's "hard-core", "action-packed", has "realistic fight sequences", and that he's "very proud of the final result". This is like a store putting a sticker on a CD that says "Warning: the beats contained on this disc may be too hard-core for minors to handle." Even if it doesn't just make young kids want to see it even more, it's probably going to have that effect on some of the grown-ups.
posted by Laugh_track at 3:22 PM on June 24, 2001


Even if it doesn't just make young kids want to see it even more, it's probably going to have that effect on some of the grown-ups.

Of course it's going to want to make the kids see it more. That's why he said it, obviously.
posted by kindall at 3:55 PM on June 24, 2001 [1 favorite]


Or perhaps consider that english is not his first language, and he's just unfortunately picked up his latest vocabulary from the film industry?
posted by margaretlam at 4:01 PM on June 24, 2001


This movie is R rated. What is Jet Li saying that the MPAA isn't?

People under seventeen can get into an R-rated movie, assuming their parents approve and buy them tickets/go to the movie with them (varies from theater to theatre).

Jet Li (or more likely, his press agent) is asking that parents don't do this, because the film is not appropriate for 'children'.

So, the MPAA is saying 'This might not be okay for your kids, you decide'. Jet Li is saying this isn't okay for your kids, keep them away.
posted by alan at 4:19 PM on June 24, 2001


People under seventeen can get into an R-rated movie

I can't find the exact quote on his website but the post does mention "young children" which makes me think around 10 not around 17.

So, the MPAA is saying 'This might not be okay for your kids, you decide'. Jet Li is saying this isn't okay for your kids, keep them away.

This makes me wish this is just a publicity stunt. Again, I'm assuming its not and this is another case of 'ethics after wealth.' Did Jet himself sit down with a pad of paper and mark how many times guns were fired in Lethal Weapon 4 and make a chart to compare to his new movie? If he's so concerned why isn't he releasing a list of things kids shouldnt see with him in it thats on video? Maybe because the US already has a ratings system for movies?

Mind-bogingly enough the MPAA is the lesser of the two evils here. Viva confusion!
posted by skallas at 4:59 PM on June 24, 2001


Skallas, are you saying Jet Li can never voice his opinion because he made Lethal Weapon 4? What is the big deal? The guy made a movie that he doesn't think is appropriate for children, and he said so on a web page. Why is this a big issue? Why is he evil?
posted by Doug at 5:11 PM on June 24, 2001


okay, so i'm a big fan of jet li and all, but... after not being able to really find the statement on the page, i decided to check out the flash version just to see if it would really be so bad and... did anyone else experience the most annoying sound ever coming out of their speakers?
posted by lotsofno at 5:22 PM on June 24, 2001


Just because a movie has an R-rating, doesn't mean parents are going to respect it.
When the South Park movie was on the big screen, it was a well-publicized fact that parents were taking their kids to see it. Not just 15 or 16 year-olds, but 10 and 11 year-olds too. Why? Because the movie had an "R" rating in the states, and theatres couldn't stop them from (stupidly) bringing their kids.
Until the American system is reworked to look something like the Canadian system (PG, AA (14-and-older without a parent), R (must be 18 or older)), you are going to have kids going into movies with their clueless parents and seeing material that is obviously not meant for them.
I get the feeling that Jet Li is trying to rectify the situation by warning the parents ahead of time that this isn't a smart idea.
Good for him.
posted by Grum at 5:46 PM on June 24, 2001


First: A well-done musician website: Cory Sipper. Her old design was better, too bad it's out of the google cache.

anyway... as far as movies go, I haven't gotten carded 'cept for once, and I look like I'm about 12. Also, I've never ever been carded renting an R rated movie. The rating system is only as good as the people enforcing it, and I think that this warning's a good thing.
posted by SpecialK at 6:32 PM on June 24, 2001


Skallas, are you saying Jet Li can never voice his opinion because he made Lethal Weapon 4?

He can say whatever he wants, but there's more than a little hypocrisy in his message.
posted by skallas at 6:52 PM on June 24, 2001


Skallas: playing devil's advocate here, perhaps he wasn't aware of how aggressively R-rated movies were marketed to young children when LR4 was made. After all, someone could have just told him about the ratings system, and he could have just assumed that it was actually enforced.

I remember a bunch of anecdotes about people bringing their young children with them to see Hannibal. Hello, people?

At any rate, my take on this is that Jet Li expressed a sentiment that he didn't want this film to be advertised to kids, and then the marketing and PR people added the stuff about how cool the film was, therefore subverting any real message Jet might have wanted to say. Fucking marketing people.

The bad thing about the celebrity-worship that pervades our entertainment is that people automatically assume that if a statement comes out, the star actually said it, where in reality there are about 20 layers between the utterances of a star and what actually gets printed.

I'll give Jet Li the benefit of the doubt here.
posted by solistrato at 7:44 PM on June 24, 2001


Do we really need Jet Li to tell us that, maybe just maybe, this movie might be a twinch violent for the under 16 crowd? And any parent that took their child to see Hannibal ought to have their eyes Moe-poked. Twice, with spitty fingers, so it stings more.

Fucking marketing people.

hey hey HEY! They're just trying to sell some movies, there. On behalf of myself and marketing professionals everywhere, I just have to say one thing: we have bosses, dude. You think this is what we WANTED to end up doing with our lives? People with English Lit, Journalism and History degrees gotta make a living too :)
posted by UncleFes at 8:06 PM on June 24, 2001


solistrato, even if we ignore Jet Li's past movies and presume he's really concerned about kids he still is missing the boat. Lets look at the Hannibal situation you mentioned, did you ever wonder that some parents will make the decision to let their kids watch movies that the MPAA thinks they shouldn't? If I thought my 16 year old was mature enough why shouldn't I bring her to see Hannibal? That's really the beauty of having the freedom to choose, set all the guidelines you like but let the individual make the final decision.

Jet Li's comments interpreted with the best of intentions is simply a generalization, the same generalization that the MPAA makes.
posted by skallas at 8:14 PM on June 24, 2001


$5.50? where do you live?
and, god, bridget fonda looks like hell. she and jennifer jason leigh won't show themselves without smoking their eyes.
posted by elle at 8:42 PM on June 24, 2001


$5.50 = Tampa, Florida!
posted by adnan at 9:40 PM on June 24, 2001


grum:

Until the American system is reworked to look something like the Canadian system ...R (must be 18 or older)

you're actually suggesting that the government enforce a law which favors the judgement of a third party profit making entity over the judgement of parents, however ignorant those parents may be?

to so lightly suggest that parenting be placed in the hands of business and government sends a deep chill down my spine.
posted by yangwar at 10:33 PM on June 24, 2001


$5.50 will get you into a matinee showing in my neck of the woods. Unless you want to wait for a movie to get to the dollar theater (which is actually $1.50 nowadays).

I don't know if Jet Li actually said what was attributed to him, but ultimately it makes no difference. Any movie with Jet Li in it is going to have a lot of violence. That's basically what Jet Li does. People don't go see his movies for his Thespian skills. Parents should leave their youngsters at home.

"By the way, if anyone here is in marketing or advertising... kill yourselves. Just planting seeds... No joke here, really, seriously, kill yourselves. You have no rationalization for what you do, you are Satan's little helpers, kill yourself, kill yourself, kill yourself now." -- Bill Hicks (caution, 4.2 MB MP3 file)
posted by RylandDotNet at 10:41 PM on June 24, 2001


I think it's pretty damned clear that there are lots of parents out there who don't spend the mental energy to fire two neurons about taking kids to see ridiculously inappropriate movies. Been in a theater lately?
posted by dhartung at 11:08 PM on June 24, 2001


you're actually suggesting that the government enforce a law which favors the judgement of a third party profit making entity over the judgement of parents, however ignorant those parents may be?

No: I'm in favour of legally enforcing the judgement of a third-party non-profit-making entiity over the judgement of parents. Because, as dhartung said, there are plenty of stupid parents out there.

And I don't see the law that allows 14-year-olds to go out drinking with their parents (although previous threads suggests that Texas law allows kids to sip Bud Light with them once thay reach 18).

At least mandatory age limits -- easily enforceable in a country that demands more ID checks for that purpose in everyday life than many dictatorships -- would prevent the insidious marketing of adult material to children. Of course, the poor kids will probably see the stuff on video later, but there you go.
posted by holgate at 3:48 AM on June 25, 2001


"By the way, if anyone here is in marketing or advertising... kill yourselves. Just planting seeds... No joke here, really, seriously, kill yourselves. You have no rationalization for what you do, you are Satan's little helpers, kill yourself, kill yourself, kill yourself now."

I talked it over with my staff and we decided that we're going to hold off on that for a little bit, to see what transpires in the market and to continue to gauge public opinion.

BTW, we checked our mission statement and we found that we are NOT "Satan's little helpers," we're outside contractors in the current employ of Satan - advisors acting under contract, not technically "helpers." That's what Legal says, anyway.
posted by UncleFes at 7:49 AM on June 25, 2001


No: I'm in favour of legally enforcing the judgement of a third-party non-profit-making entiity

The MPAA claims to be a non-profit entity.

The MPAA ratings are too subjective. They really provide parents with no information at all. Both South Park and Kiss of the Dragon are rated R, but for totally different reasons. What would be wrong with a more objective rating system?

S4V2L2

Lots of sex, some violence, some bad language. That tells me something more than "Under 17 not admitted without adult." Granted, the above is over-simplified to death.

Remember, the MPAA are the ones that won't let Linux users play DVDs on their machines and won't allow US DVDs to play on British players. Evil, evil, evil.
posted by goto11 at 8:47 AM on June 25, 2001


solistrato, even if we ignore Jet Li's past movies and presume he's really concerned about kids he still is missing the boat.

There's more to Jet Li's film career than LW4; something like Once Upon a Time in China seems to me that it would be wholly appropriate for a 12-year-old and if fans are familiar with him through his mid-Nineties Hong Kong movies, they might well want to bring their kids along. Li isn't saying that the MPAA should post guards. He isn't saying that he knows what's best for your kids. I assume -- based on the front-page post, because I couldn't find it on JetLi.com -- he just thinks that the movie is too violent for younger children, which is certainly not the case with all R-rated movies. This doesn't seem to be some sort of "Think of the children!" crusade; he's expressing an opinion about the merits of his own work (while juicing his own nice-guy image and building buzz for Kiss of the Dragon, of course).
posted by snarkout at 8:55 AM on June 25, 2001


Until the American system is reworked to look something like the Canadian system ...R (must be 18 or older)

you're actually suggesting that the government enforce a law


when did movie ratings become legally binding? i thought they were voluntary ratings used by trade associations, that theaters that abide by them are doing so voluntarily.
posted by tolkhan at 5:14 PM on June 25, 2001


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