Eric D. Snider

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Eric’s Sack of Mail: Loretta is not a prude!

I got an amusing e-mail from someone regarding my review of the film “Children on Their Birthdays.” You almost certainly have never heard of this film. I’d forgotten about it. There was a press screening for it in the summer of 2002, and it was supposed to be released soon thereafter. Then it got pushed back and pushed back, and it was finally released on Oct. 18, 2002, but only in a handful of theaters. I don’t think it ever even played in Utah, where I lived at the time and where they had the press screening for us.

Anyway, I guess it’s on video now or something, because a woman named Loretta watched it, loved it, and took issue with my review. Her e-mail doesn’t qualify as an Angry Letter, but it is enjoyable for other reasons:

I think you are way off base on this movie, “Children on Their Birthdays.” It was delightful and a breath of fresh air compared to the movies of today. We enjoyed that movie so much a I am going to buy it. Sick of the blood, guts & foul talking movies of today. And why do we have to watch stupid people smoke stupid cigarettes in movies today? I usually get bored with them and turn them off and read or paint. Boring stuff today. After you have heard the “f” word 60 or 70 times it is sickening.

Wish there were as many of this type of movie as there is the trash movies available. I would be in heaven with something good to watch!

And I am a far cry from being a prude, Loretta

Now, I’m pretty sure the word “boring” doesn’t mean what Loretta thinks it means. Movies are often violent and bloody, and I guess they’re sometimes dull. But I think where Loretta says she gets “bored” with them, she really means she gets “offended” or “disgusted.” I do find it unlikely that someone would be bored by, say, “Terminator 2,” yet enthralled by the plot-free and pointless “Children on Their Birthdays.”

Also, Loretta is the only person I have ever heard complain about the amount of smoking in movies. I guess she’s whom the Motion Picture Association of America was thinking of when they recently announced that they would start taking onscreen smoking into account when determining films’ ratings. (The lunacy of that announcement is the subject for another blog.)

Finally, Loretta’s last line made me laugh. The way she put her name on the same line as her closing sentence made me read it as: “I am a far cry from being a prude, Loretta!,” like she thought my name was Loretta, or like “Loretta” is a common nickname like “Sparky” or “Buster” or whatever. I ain’t no prude, Loretta!

Also, it’s worth noting that Loretta probably really is a prude. I mean, come on. She gets offended by smoking!

11 Responses to “Eric’s Sack of Mail: Loretta is not a prude!”

  1. LAT Says:

    Um, the way I remember that story included the little girl being self centered, precocious and manipulative, and then getting run over by a bus. I can’t imagine Loretta liking a movie where the “innocent” lead gets smooshed at the last second so I’m thinking they cut that rather important bit out of the script?

  2. KMD Says:

    I think movies today have a lot less smoking than in days of yore. Seems whenever I watch an old black and white movie, everybody is lighting up. The smoking is so prevalent, I’m surprised the cigarette isn’t given a name and included in the list of credits!

  3. BeeDub Says:

    Smoking looks a lot cooler in black and white than in color. And while no one in those days thought cigarettes were exactly HEALTHY, they didn’t know the extent to which smoking harms a person.

  4. B Says:

    If you get rid of smoking in movies, how are we supposed to know who the cool characters are?

  5. Carrie Says:

    or who Cigarette Smoking Man is?

  6. Argus Skyhawk Says:

    You know how old movies usually get rated G when they are rereleased? I wonder how the new MPAA rule will change that. Will various old Humphrey Bogart and Jerry Lewis films get released on Blu-Ray with PG13’s and R’s?

  7. card Says:

    Out of curiosity, does the consumption of alchoholic beverages in a movie affect its ratings?

  8. David Says:

    I’m not 100% sure on this, but I think reckless consumption of alcohol does. I’ve heard it counts as a ‘mature theme’ if a character is unpleasant (not funny) as a result or being drunk. Although quite how the MPAA (and BBFC for that matter) operates, I haven’t really the foggiest.

  9. Mare Says:

    It’s the people who talk about money constantly who are the people who don’t have it… the people who talk about sex all the time are the people not having it, and the people reminding you that they are not a prude are the people who, most definitely, are prudes.

    Thank goodness for prudes like Loretta. It adds a nice contrast to the rest of our vulgarity.

  10. KMD Says:

    I can see the future now. “This movie rated PG-13 for drunken buffoonery.”

  11. js Says:


    “This movie is rated PG-13 for severe cussing and very illegal pony fights.

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