Let's discuss "Santo in The Treasure of Dracula"

But doesn’t an NC-17 rating take the responsibility entirely out of the hands of the parents? Unlike R, it’s no longer up the parents whether someone 17 or younger can watch the film; they simple can’t. This is why people get upset when they see a film get that rating when they don’t think it merits it.

Also, you do understand that since people can have differing opinions on what’s age-appropriate, that some people may be in favor of the ratings being more lenient to certain subject matter than you are, yes?

Like, if a film that would’ve been rated NC-17 under MPAA’s current CARA changes to getting an R rating, as a parent it simply means you now have to consider whether your kid can watch it, instead of it being completely out of bounds for them, as decided by CARA. And with many more resources now, including even the movie ratings themselves including content descriptors, it doesn’t seem like the MPAA needs to be so restrictive on nudity and sex as they currently are.


An NC-17 doesn’t have the force of law so, no, it does not. In the very narrow window of “an exhibitor won’t sell me a ticket for my underaged child” it might present a minor obstacle at rare points in history.

Did you not read this earlier on in the thread? It was before you chimed in, so maybe you missed it.

I actually don’t have much of an opinion on ratings being “lenient” or “strict” by whatever standards, because as a parent I never even noticed them. I fully accept that most people don’t share my values and I would be horrified at the notion of trying to impose them on others.

It doesn’t seem like it to whom? If I may paraphrase:

Also, you do understand that since people can have differing opinions on what’s age-appropriate, that some people may be in favor of the ratings being less lenient to certain subject matter than you are, yes?

I’m the one sitting here going “Hey, you’re both being incredibly arbitrary. Maybe chuck the whole irrelevant system?”


So you’re saying the NC-17 rating does remove parental choice, but only in an instance you don’t personally care about all too much.

I also don’t understand what point you were trying to make linking back to a previous post of yours. That was literally the first post of yours I responded to, since I thought you were misrepresenting the points that This Film is Not Yet Rated was making.

What do you mean by “chuck the whole irrelevant system”? Do you mean to replace it with something else? What else? Or are you fine with 10 year-olds going to see films that would previously have been rated NC-17, because there’s no determination at all at a theater level for what may be age appropriate?

Again, This Film is Not Yet Rated was primarily arguing for more transparency, more accountability, and most importantly more consistency in the ratings and how they’re applied, especially in terms of indie films. I already mentioned Orgazmo, made by the South Park guys, getting an NC-17. They’ve also talked about how their experience making the South Park movie was very different in terms of getting an R rating, largely because they had a major studio, Paramount, backing them. This time around, they got back specific notes on what CARA objected to so they could cut it, something the MPAA specifically claims they don’t give out. They also just kept making changes to make the film MORE outrageous, and “somehow” the film still got an R.

Age appropriate ratings are probably not the best system ever, and they have obvious flaws, but they’re the best system anyone’s come up with, especially considering nearly every country has them in some form, and TV and video games also adopted them. So if we’re going to have them, they should at least be fair and consistent, and also more transparent with more accountability, so as a society we can have better discussions about what’s appropriate for each rating, and major studios can’t fudge their way into a better rating than an indie film may get.

I gotta say, this makes me feel super weird, because IRL, I am Cara.


Again, it has no force of law. So, no, it does not remove parental choice. If a parent is determined to have their underage child watch an NC-17 movie, guaranteed it can be done. It maybe, potentially, rarely makes it somewhat harder.

Because you said:

Which is exactly my point: People do have differing opinions.

Even when the country was (at least mythically) more homogenous, the values imposed by the Hays Office were more driven by Hays’ idiosyncratic ideas than any broad survey.

Allow me to humbly suggest that movie theaters are not how ten-year-olds are watching “NC-17” material, and them being able to get into theaters to see NC-17 films would not substantially alter that.

Shall we censor the Internet? Or are you fine with 10-year-olds watching that stuff online?

Is there really no way at all for an exhibitor to figure out what’s age appropriate without a centralized board casting chicken bones over how many times an F-bomb is used as an interjection versus a verb?

Ratings boards existed before the MPAA. There are innumerable groups around who will happily make that call for you. Furthermore, exhibitors typically pre-screen the movies they show. They could actually do it themselves.

I’m familiar with the South Park:BLU story, and they had similar issues with Team America. I agree that it’s nonsense; I disagree that any other committee formed in any other way would end up any differently, except possibly in whom it favored.

Every country abuses its citizens in some way, whether highly formalized or arbitrary. “Everyone does it,” is not a good point.

We don’t have to have them and, again, except in the increasingly irrelevant public exhibition space, we don’t.

“Fair” is meaningless in this context. “Consistent” means “Police Squad” is the most violent TV show of 1982.

As a society, we don’t really “have discussions”. We have people positioning themselves to coerce the rest of us into doing what they think is proper. This is why we bounce from one hysteria to another: Mobs don’t really have thoughtful conversations.

No ratings board with any power would exist for long before being captured by the companies it was purporting to regulate. (Citation: Every regulatory board in the history of the universe.)

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So you’re advocating that parents violate theater rules?

Are you completely unaware of parental controls and other attempts to age-gate certain content on the web?

No individual distributor is going to want that responsibility. The most likely result would be that the National Association of Theatre Owners would have a national ratings board instead of the MPAA.

There’s a reason all those local ratings boards gave way to CARA, and it was because it was a massive hassle to submit to all of them and deal with each individually.

And again, you haven’t proposed any type of ratings other than age-appropriateness.

And your repeated references to Police Squad don’t really work, since that was an OTA broadcast of a TV show, not a film, and thus subject to FCC oversight, and was done before TV ratings existed, back when OTA TV had to be appropriate for “all audience” basically 24/7. Not to mention that whatever whining some special interested group was doing on Donahue, the show wasn’t removed from the air for being too violent.

The rest of your post comes off as pretty cynical, basically arguing that since no ratings system can be perfect, we shouldn’t even bother to try and improve the existing system. And regulation capture can by cyclical, as with the FAA reforms after the 737-MAX crashes. Now, hopefully it won’t always take extreme events like that to trigger them, but one thing that helps limit regulation capture is better transparency and accountability.

Err to get things back on topic I did my first re-watch of Santo last night and it was even funnier the second time. Between the bizarre happenings on screen and the excellent riffing it makes a fantastic start to season 13. If this is the quality benchmark we’re in for a heck of a great time this year!


I want to see more of Crow’s new blinkers. I wonder if they’ll be used naturally or a la Richard in Parts: The Clonus Horror (which would also be amusing).



Since both were written by Alfredo Salazar (who also penned the upcoming The Batwoman), it shouldn’t be that big a surprise.


He had one idea and damn it if he didn’t stick to it.


Looking at Salazar’s filmography, I noticed Santo en el Venganza de la Momia (Vengeance of the Mummy), and just realized for the first time that it’s a 1971 movie sharing the same problem as Tesoro de Dracula - it was a color movie, but only available in black and white for a long time. The recent “first English language edition” from VCI is in color, but my old Rise Above DVD is in black and white.

I genuinely thought, without looking it up, that Venganza de la Momia was a much earlier Santo movie, like circa 1962. It plays almost exactly like a 1930s “jungle explorer” movie, but with a masked luchador instead of Jungle Jim or Tarzan. It has all the clichés, including my favorite, “Senor! The bearers, they will go no further!”


This was the fourth time I watched this movie and the dramatic unmasking of the villain at the conclusion has slowly progressed from, “Wait? Who? What?” to, “No, seriously. Who? Why? What?”, to “Ohhhhhhhh . . . he was that guy in that scene, I think.”, to “Wait. Did his character even have a name? How were we supposed to guess, let alone even care, that he was the villain?”

Answers to any of the above questions are still gladly accepted. :face_with_spiral_eyes:


Eh. He was the old caretaker from the amusement park. (Yeah, he had a doctorate, but the economy was tough.)


Makes as much sense as anything else, really.

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There were a ton of el Santo movies; maybe that guy’s identity was SCU* continuity?

*Santo Cinematic Universe


Just caught Jonah’s quip “whoa! L7 got back together!” and decided to replay Bricks Are Heavy. Damn, L7 rawked