Less sexy time in the movies would be great. ‘Top Gun: Maverick’ does a great job of that.



My husband has been dying to see “Top Gun: Maverick.” But because we live far away from family, it’s hard to get away to the movies without the kids. When we do get to go to the theater, it is usually with our two young children, and that means it’s almost always a kid movie.

Don’t get me wrong, I love me some Disney. I could (and probably have) watched “Encanto” and “The Sword in the Stone” a million times. But sometimes you want (or need) to watch a movie with your kids that isn’t exactly a “kiddie movie.”

Historically for us, that has meant covering our kids’ eyes to shield them from the sexy times they are not nearly old enough to see, and telling them to cover their ears to drown out all the accompanying smoochy smoochy sounds (and very awkward groans) that accompany those onscreen lovemaking moments. They usually fight against our censorship, giggling and wriggling, to end up triumphantly telling us, in the most purposefully annoying voice they can possibly muster, “We saw them kiss!”

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Enter “Top Gun: Maverick,” which mercifully has no sexy time scenes at all. I wonder: Why can’t we have more of that kind of movie? 

It’s July, and the “Top Gun” sequel has been out for nearly two months. At this point, the hubby was desperate to see the film. Our babysitter’s husband was sick, and we didn’t have anyone to leave the kids with. We decided to take our chances and bring the girls along to see Tom Cruise do his thing in the sequel to the 1986 original, which came out when I was 2. 

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We prepared our action plan for the less PG scenes, considering the original film has a well-known bedroom moment when Maverick (Cruise’s call sign) does the horizontal tango with his sexy flight instructor, Kelly McGillis, to the song “Take My Breath Away.” I assumed that in the sequel, there would be more breaths being taken away. And honestly, who wants to watch that with their kids? 

But I was pleasantly surprised: The sequel left a lot more to be desired … literally. There are no sex scenes – just a good old-fashioned billowing of a curtain and panning out of the camera to the night sky. The adult audience members were left to infer the rest.

Most adults have no problem doing that, and kids don’t need to.  

Is a movie without a sex scene as good? Yes. 

Call me a prude, but I have never liked sex scenes in movies. I find them awkward when I watch them by myself or with anyone else.

Some reasons why Hollywood should cut out the sex scenes in more movies: 

►More families could watch the movies together, which means more people going to out to the theater. 

►Anyone who has ever seen a Bollywood film knows what billowing curtains means. Hollywood could do the same. 

►Lots of actors regret sex scenes after the fact. They could spare themselves the regret. 

►After the Me Too movement’s exposure of Harvey Weinstein and other allegedly abusive Hollywood power brokers, it wouldn’t be a bad idea to move away from not only the rapey movie scenes, but just sex scenes in general, at least until we have more safety and equality guarantees for actors and other people in the movie industry exposed to the risk of sexual assault. 

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It’s time for Hollywood to at the very least ask whether or not a sex scene is vital for moviegoers to understand the characters or the plot. If not, it’s OK to leave it out. Really.

A lot more families could enjoy a trip to the movies if all the unnecessary coitus was cut out. We know it happens, and we know how it happens, but that doesn’t mean we always need to see it happen. 

More from Carli Pierson

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►Americans can’t handle their guns: Time to repeal the Second Amendment

►Breastfeeding for two years?: That sounds like a modern woman’s nightmare

Carli Pierson, a New York licensed attorney, is an opinion writer with USA TODAY, and a member of the USA TODAY Editorial Board. Follow her on Twitter: @CarliPiersonEsq

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