Tuesday, April 14, 2015

To Fight Teen Drinking, Experts Call For Stricter Movie Ratings

The Los Angeles Times, April 13, 2015

"Should a movie that depicts any type of drinking automatically earn an R rating from the Motion Picture Assn. of America? The authors of a new study argue that the answer should be yes – and that this would make teenagers less likely to binge-drink or use alcohol in other risky ways.

The study, published Monday by the journal Pediatrics, offers fresh support for the idea that teens who see drinking on the big screen are more likely to drink themselves.

Among a group of 5,163 15-year-olds from England, those who watched the most minutes of drinking on film were twice as likely to have alcohol-related problems as those who watched the fewest. They were also 2.4 times more likely to drink at least once a week and 70% more likely consume five or more drinks in a single day.

Different groups of researchers have made similar observations about adolescents in the United States, Germany and elsewhere. Although the link between movie drinking and teen drinking turns up again and again, none of these studies can prove that watching James Bond quaff a martini or seeing the cast of “The Hangover” down shots on the roof a Las Vegas hotel actually causes teenagers to drink more than they would otherwise." Read More.

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