Opening in New York Friday, a controversial and much talked about film from director Abdellatif Kechiche, "Blue is the Warmest Color," will be accessible to some high school students for viewing at the IFC Center in Greenwich Village.
The film, which depicts the romantic relationship of two young French women, received an NC-17 rating from the Motion Picture Association of America, which is unsurprising since most of the controversy surrounding the film stems from a 15-minute long explicit sex scene. Actress Lea Seydoux, who plays Emma in the film, said that during the filming of this centerpiece scene that she felt "like a prostitute."
"This is not a movie for young children, but it is our judgment that it is not inappropriate for mature, inquiring teenagers who are looking ahead to the emotional challenges and opportunities that adulthood holds," said senior vice president and manager of the IFC Center, John Vanco, in a statement sent to sent to The New York Times.
The theater also posted a disclaimer on their website concerning their decision to admit teens:
While the MPAA has assigned BLUE IS THE WARMEST COLOR a rating of NC-17, recommending that no one under 18 be admitted, IFC Center feels that the film is appropriate viewing for mature adolescents. Accordingly, the theater will admit high school age patrons at its discretion.
As A.O. Scott noted in The Times, MPAA ratings have no "legal or contractual force."
In France, the film received a "12" rating, meaning that kids age 12 and up are welcome to view the film.