Today, in what qualifies as a rare occurrence, the MPAA overturned the NC-17 rating it slapped onto Blue Valentine and transformed it into an R. The film's rating had been generating quite a bit of controversy, with stars Ryan Gosling and Michelle Williams submitting written appeals to the MPAA board pointing out issues of hypocrisy, and Harvey Weinstein setting aside time to personally plea for the kiss of death rating to be lifted from the film.
Blue Valentine's NC-17 rating (which would hinder its box office performance by most certainly limiting its theatrical release) was assigned as the result of what has been described as an emotionally raw sex scene. The debate, for many, seemed to be that (while not violent or particularly objectionable), the honesty of the scene made it all the more 'graphic' or real. Double-standards came into play when films such as Black Swan, featuring similar content, were granted an R rating over Blue Valentine.
Now, the Weinstein Company can rejoice and begin to target a much wider audience for Blue Valentine as they prepare to enter the eye of the awards season storm. M. has already thrown her two cents in, and you can check out her review at Love & Squalor.