The movie "Seven" with Brad Pitt

I saw this movie in 1995 and really enjoyed it and purchased it last week from Amazon. I checked the USCCB and they rate it “0” - over the years I have purchased lots of movies that I later found out were “0” and these are movies that never affected me negatively and I enjoyed like “Rosemary’s Baby” “Eye of the Needle” “Pet Semetary” “Suspiria” (other Dario Argento movies) and years later discovered they are “O” - is it a mortal sin to watch them??? I am in my sixties and have seen lots of movies over the years (what about the Evil Dead series? - they are not listed on USCCB). I feel anything not listed is okay to watch. Why or why did I have to check all those movies? Any opinions?

Oh, and if I decide to watch them, can I go to communion and confess it as a venial sin? Yes, I am scrupulous.

No, it’s not sinful! Why would it be? For one thing, Seven is a work of art that everyone should see because it’s just that good, and secondly, why is merely watching swearing, violence, etc., a bad thing? You’re not doing any of it…

Is it sinful to watch movies with immoral content in them? I would say probably not, though ultimately it depends on why the content is in the movie. For instance, watching pornography is sinful, not because of the fact people are naked, but because of the reason they are as such. I don’t think anyone would say watching Schindler’s list is sinful, though they is a lot of nudity in that film. I think the same must be true of violence. If the violence is there for a good purpose, then of course it is not sinful. However if the movie is overly violent for the sake of being overly violent, I think that almost turns that into almost pornographic violence, which I would say definitely blurs the lines between if it’s ok to watch or not.

A much better question is , what good will it do me to watch this movie? If the only answer you can come up with is to be entertained, then chances are that movie is not of much value. It is a very sad state of affairs when entertainment has become our sole axiom of judgement on art. The negative consequences of that standpoint are huge.

As to the movie Seven itself, I agree it’s a well made movie. However I found it to be too gory and to have no real good qualities about it except that it is mildly entertaining. The twist at the end wasn’t even a very good twist because I saw it coming way before it happened. As entertainment the movie is decent, but as art I say it fails.

Perhaps this post in ask an apologist may help.

That’s not right, to think you can keep sinning after you go to confession. The whole point of confession is to try to stop doing that sin again.

I never seen this movie, but I do think it is a venial sin to watch bad movies with violence, sex, etc… the way i think of it is: if God was in the same room as you, would you be watching those movies???

If God were in the room you’d struggle to watch ANY of the more modern films, we’d all be stuck watching Bambi and The Lion King for the rest of our lives. Not that I’m knocking Disney, everyone needs a good sing song every now and again. I find it hard to think of many recent films (aimed at Adults) that do not contain at least one of the following: sex before marriage, gratuitous nudity, gluttonous/voracious behaviour, smoking/drug taking, binge drinking, breaking the law, swearing/ dis-respect or violence. If you didn’t watch films that were ‘sinful’ or contained ‘sinful actions’ the only one of my favourite films I’d be able to watch is… well… I wouldn’t be able to watch any of them! Four Weddings and a Funeral (sex before marriage), Miss Congeniality (binge drinking), American Beauty (lustful thoughts, sex before marriage, drug abuse), Green Street (gratuitous violence), Confessions of a Shopaholic (lying, binge drinking) and any of the James Bond films (sex before marriage, violence)! I don’t think it is a sin to watch these films, as long as I don’t act like the people in them!

I am just a horror fan, and that is why when I checked the USCCB for all my fav films (that I also bought on DVD) I was shocked, as there is no sex in any of them. Rosemary’s Baby??? I saw that in the movies when it came out and thought nothing about commiting a sin;
Good, Bad and Ugly?? I saw about 10 times when it first came out - didn’t phase me that I was watching something against the Church. Of course, there was no internet and I never checked.

Eye of the Needle with Donald Sutherland (that one has a sex scene but I scan those scenes) - I love Donald in that one. But now I feel I cannot watch it because I have to confess it.

And what cracks me up is that the film Unfaithful with Richard Gere has a very sexy sex scenes with Diane Lane and that movie is not rated 0 - very strange.

I really want to watch my movies again - spent alot of money on them - what about the Evil Dead series?? I have those and they are not rated on the website. They are just funny gory.

Well, thanks for listening.

our minds are like computers… they take everything in… and if you watch enough trash, stuff that say fornication is no big deal, violence is no big deal, etc… pretty soon you begin to think those things are no big deal… it starts in the subconscious…

it is a sin to watch trash.

aside from the amoraility of it, it is a sin to waste time. There are people starving in the world. Why not go feed them rather than spend time watching trash? Why not volunteer @ Right to Life or wherever/?

why not go to Mass?

Garbage in / Garbage OUt

Maybe she is helping the hungry, and maybe she is going to mass every week. By 60, I doubt she is going to be pro-violence, after being “expose” to those movies. It’s kind of rude to treat her like she’s going to start beating people and fornicating now, when she is obviously not into that, as if she was a mere child who does not know right from wrong.

I can’t comment on your particular movies. I can comment on the quality of the reviews you can find from USCCB. They are not reliable. Their original review of Goldeneye (James Bond) is what cut it for me. I think different people are sensitive to different things. I don’t find their distinction between O and A-IV to be something that could really work as a determinant of morality/value. The distinctions are too arbitrary and they also don’t account for personal emotional makeup. Use you own judgment. :thumbsup: I don’t think every movie out there passes muster.

Since I stopped paying attention to their reviews, perhaps their quality has improved. But the salient point remains that they don’t seem designed to be a determinant of morality. You may find the reviews very helpful, though. :slight_smile: It’s just my 2 cents that they don’t help me.

I second what Pug has said. :thumbsup:

Side note: I love the movie Seven. Yes, it’s gritty, but so well made, great story.

yea exactly. thank you!!

Trust me, i like watching movies and TV shows that I consider to be sinful, but the fact is I still consider it a sin. I don’t think you should justify it just because you enjoy it. You are putting filth into your minds, so i think that would be considered a sin. i don’t know , but that is just my opinion

Original poster here, I am 60 and attend daily mass before going to my job, and I do give to the poor box every week. I just like horror movies that are unrealistic. Now Child’s Play, Pet Semetary, Evil Dead - those are unrealistic but fun to watch. Except for Evil Dead which is not rated on USCCB, they are rated 0. I love gritty serial killer movies too - and Asian Horror.

So as a final question to you all: if you watch an 0 movie (Not sex stuff, just horror) would you confess it? Amityville Horror is also rated 0, Serpent and the Rainbow, Suspiria (gory death scenes but can be scanned when watching).

I think the USCCB should re-review some of those old movies and give them an L rating since some of the stuff out today is far worse than those older movies.

It’s never once crossed my mind.

I don’t watch horror, except when I must on account of my spouse calling in an IOU. I don’t appreciate the genre enough to make a call about it specifically, perhaps. You only need confess the sin if it is mortal. If you have only done a venial sin, then you can go to communion.

I’ve watched things they would call O from the Action genre and I did not confess it.

But you said you were scrupulous, right? Maybe you should ask your confessor what to do about it and follow his advice? That could ease your mind more than us CAF junkies could. Ask him. No need to rush in there, just ask the next time you would go according to your schedule. :slight_smile:

Just a point: if you are sure watching something would be a venial sin, well, pass that one up. :thumbsup:

Ignore the " bishops’ " ratings. They’re not in any way authoritative, and they’re not even done by bishops.

They’re laughably inconsistent, based on a deeply flawed rating scheme, and are done by those who understand neither moral theology nor art.

Here is one of many examples, using the Matrix trilogy:

THE MATRIX is rated “O”. THE MATRIX RELOADED is rated L (it was rated A-IV at the time).

THE MATRIX and THE MATRIX RELOADED are equally violent. THE MATRIX RELOADED, however, is the one that has explicit sexual content. In addition, THE MATRIX has themes which seem to support faith while THE MATRIX RELOADED has themes which in some manner tear it down.

Does it make any sense that THE MATRIX is “morally offensive” but THE MATRIX RELOADED is not?

No, not at all. Do yourself a favor as a Catholic, a movie fan, and a human being and ignore that **** rating system entirely. Judge for yourself what you should and should not be watching.

Well said! I wish people like you wrote the reviews. Whoever actually writes those reviews for the bishops’ office doesn’t have a clue. It’s unfortunate that so few people understand what you began to articulate here.

I have no respect for the USCCB’s movie review system.

Well, you should think differently; the whole “what if Jesus were in the room” approach fails on a number of levels. Please see the following link:

Well said.


If I did confess it, it would have nothing to do with the fact that it was given an “O” rating. I think johngh’s standard (I quoted him first in this reply) is a good one to think about.

That would be a start, you’re right! Unfortunately, the whole idea of rating how morally offensive or problematic a movie is based on content alone (again, see johngh’s reply as quoted above) is flawed. Add to that the credibility-shattering inconsistencies that result from the reviewers’ pitiful inability to be objective (violence, as several people have noted, earns an “O” far more easily than even explicit sexual content; see my above reply on the Matrix trilogy), and I find myself believing that the whole system is beyond saving.

An approach like the one at is much, much better.

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