Thursday, May 27, 2004

ClearPlay: Hand Sanitizer for Your DVD Collection

Shirking their parental duties and letting others take the responsibility for raising their children, America’s caring nurturers are shelling out $1.50 a pop to be told what is worthwhile and wholesome entertainment and what is mind-corrupting drivel. Knowing how words like “penis” and “oh my God,” can turn children into serial murderers, a company in Utah called ClearPlay has invented a filter for your DVDs to weed out the malevolent influences in your entertainment library. Phew! I can stop worrying about the spread of ritualized Satanic abuse perpetrated by those evil Hollywood lefties.

(Isn’t that an idea that had to be born in Utah?)

This from the New York Times:

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Pervading the editing is an infuriating literal-mindedness, a squeamishness about sex and language but an astonishing indifference to violence, destruction and pain. In "Terminator 3," for example, a man learning that he has unwittingly triggered the annihilation of mankind is not allowed to say "Dear God" - but you won't miss a frame of the movie's hyperviolent fight sequences. (In one of them, the Terminator smashes a urinal on his cyber-opponent's head and shoves her head into a toilet; she slams him through a marble wall, hurls him across the room using his groin as a handle, and blasts his face with a flamethrower.)

* * *

But as it is, the evidence suggests that ClearPlay's technology is not intended for families at all. It's for like-minded adults, specifically those who are offended by bad language and sexual situations but don't mind brutality, destruction and suffering.

Maybe every ClearPlay-sanitized movie ought to begin with a message: "This film has been modified as follows: It has been formatted to fit the taste, sensibilities and religious beliefs of a couple of guys in Utah. That'll be $1.50."

Get the whole story (free registration required).


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