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Should old film ratings be changed to reflect modern attitudes? Poll of the week

As the BBFC upgrades the age-rating of Mary Poppins from a U to a PG, we want to know what you think about changing age ratings of beloved movies.

Yahoo UK's poll of the week lets you vote and indicate your strength of feeling on one of the week's hot topics. After 72 hours the poll closes and, each Friday, we'll publish and analyse the results, giving readers the chance to see how polarising a topic has become and if their view chimes with other Yahoo UK readers.

Dick Van Dyke and Julie Andrews starred in Disney's Oscar-winning 1964 hit Mary Poppins. (LMK/Alamy)
Dick Van Dyke and Julie Andrews starred in Disney's Oscar-winning 1964 hit Mary Poppins. (LMK/Alamy)

Thought Mary Poppins was practically perfect in every way? Well, not any more according to the BBFC (British Board of Film Classification) which has recently upgraded the 1964 Disney film's age rating from a U (Universal) to a PG (Parental Guidance).

The decision to change the film's age-rating to PG was made due to the use of the derogatory term 'Hottentot' which is uttered by Admiral Boom, the cannon-firing neighbour of the Banks family. Boom uses the term twice, once about people offscreen, and then about the Banks children who have soot on their face.

Coined in the 17th century, the word refers to the Khoekhoe (or Khoikhoi), a nomadic group of South African people, and is now considered to be outdated and racially insensitive.

The BBFC regularly reviews its age classifications, and said in a statement to the Daily Mail: "We understand from our racism and discrimination research... that a key concern for... parents is the potential to expose children to discriminatory language or behaviour which they may find distressing or repeat without realising the potential offence.”

This isn't the first time this has happened. In 2021, the age ratings for Flash Gordon and Rocky were both upgraded from PG to 12A for their 'discriminatory stereotypes' and depictions of domestic abuse respectively.

But what do you think? Should the age ratings of older movies be updated to reflect modern sensibilities?

Read the results and the analysis of the poll here.

Age ratings - Poll of the week results (Yahoo News UK)
Age ratings - Poll of the week results (Yahoo News UK)
Age ratings - Poll of the week results (Yahoo News UK)
Age ratings - Poll of the week results (Yahoo News UK)

Come back on Friday to read the results and analysis via the link below.

Read more of Yahoo UK's Poll of the Week articles