Penn Jillette and his pals have a new movie coming out, called "The Aristocrats," which he bills as "the funniest people in the world today swearing a lot." It's coming to theaters in a month or so, but without any rating from the Motion Pictures Association of America. The Bullshit artiste explained in a Sunday L.A. Times op-ed:
The MPAA ratings board was set up to allow Hollywood to police itself—so the government wouldn't come in and do it. But even if the MPAA didn't exist, the government wouldn't get to do that. It's not allowed to. Right?
Anyway, I don't mind the MPAA all that much. I don't mind all the studios getting together and promising that they'll let a group of non-elected anonymous freaks decide how their movies get edited and advertised. I don't mind a giant pedestrian-taste cartel. Nothing wrong with that.
But it's only voluntary if some people don't volunteer. So that's what we decided to do. We figured, if all the movies that come out are rated, there's no real freedom.