Being old or a parent = aversion to unhappy or violent movies

I’m not a parent, but my mother once commented that becoming a parent caused her to longer be able to handle violent movies because it would make her think, “What if that violence were happening to my children?”

She also added that the older she gets, the more she only wants to see movies with happy endings; doesn’t want unhappy endings.
Is this commonplace - parents have a newfound aversion to violence in movies, and elderly folks have an aversion to unhappy-ending movies?

I don’t mind violence (I love Tarantino). I also have no problem with unhappy endings. Becoming a parent didn’t make any difference to me.

Nah, I don’t think anything’s going to change my love of violent action movies.

I don’t like sad ones though; never did, even as a kid. I watch movies to be entertained and for escapism - not to be brought down!

(Speaking of which, UP! should come with a ‘downer’ warning. Those first few minutes gutted me so thoroughly that I never got over it for the rest of the movie.)

I love an unhappy ending, but I do say becoming a parent made it harder to watch anything where something really bad happens to a child that is near the age of my child. It is practically impossible for me not to think about that being my child (even if only for a moment).

For example, the photo of the drowned refugee boy became popular this year. His age/appearance was very much like my son. Looking at that photo was MUCH harder than it would have been only 5 years ago. I don’t even want to look at it.

ETA: As another data point, I remember when my family watched Saving Private Ryan. There is a scene where a dying young man on the battlefield is crying out for his mother. I was of similar age, and my mother did not take that scene well at all.

I love violent movies and sad ones are no problem … but I cannot now abide seeing harm come to children in entertainment, purely as a result of parenthood.

Before I had my boy, you could have piled up the dead babies and I would not have cared, overmuch. :wink: Now, I find it tough. What is worse is entertainment in which a child is abused or bullied - I find that very hard to watch.

Well I’m not a parent and I’m not quite 30 yet, so hopefully most of you guys wouldn’t consider me old. But as I’ve gotten older my opinions on violence in movies has definitely changed. I used to really enjoy action movies; when I was a kid my opinion was generally the more guns and swords in a movie the better. As I’ve aged into a moderately mature adult I’ve lost my taste for cheering on the hero as he mows down wave after wave of nameless enemy mooks. Becoming a more worldly person, actually meeting some people who have served in the military and lived through wars makes me think of this quote by Faramir from Lord of the Rings:

“The enemy? His sense of duty was no less than yours, I deem. You wonder what his name is, where he comes from, and if he really was evil at heart. What lies or threats led him on this long march from home, if he would not rather have stayed there.”

I don’t mind violence in movies if it is to reflect on how violence affects us as human beings. I’ll still watch a movie or tv show about war or gangsters or whatever. But I no longer watch those movies for the violence, if that makes sense.

I don’t know if it happens a lot but I’ve seen some moms undergo that conversion. Dads too, but I just figure they’re avoiding arguments with moms.

I’m not categorically averse to violent or sad movies, but since I became a parent there are definitely certain themes that I can’t tolerate any more.

I’m also more cognizant when it comes to avoiding movies I know will make me angry or depressed. I’m not sure that it is directly linked to me being “older” chronologically, but rather that I have a better understanding of what I do and don’t like, and I am able to be more thoughtful about avoiding things that will stress me out.

I also think that as I get more jaded, I am less amused by mindless violence and titillation. Comedies just aren’t as funny as they used to be, and action movies that used to be exciting now just induce boredom.