Mild Peril: a game based on IMDB’s Parents Guides

A few years ago I invented a game, a bit like Charades,  based on IMDB’s wonderful Parent’s Guides. I’m sure I’m not the only person who has invented it but I cannot find any other rules online.  I call it Mild Peril and it is perfect for car journeys.

I played it last month with a few of my friends at Hyper Island during a long and boring taxi ride in Malaysia and thought it was time to share it with a wider audience.

  • It requires no props; just access to IMDB on your phone or online.
  • It can be played by 2 or more players (probably best suited to those over 12 or so, who’ve seen plenty of movies).
  • Player 1 chooses a film that they expect the others to have seen.  Obscure arthouse movies don’t work here.  Go with the classics.
  • Player 1 goes to IMDB and looks up the movie and selects the Parent’s Guide.  This is a wonderful resource written by obsessive and overanxious parents who have documented the darker side of almost every movie.
  • Player 1 reads out selected extracts from this guide and the goal is for the other players to guess the film.
  • A player who guesses correctly selects the next movie.  A points tally could be kept but the game is fun enough not to require a winner.
  • Reading out selected elements from Sex & Nudity, Violence & Gore, Profanity, Alcohol/Drugs/Smoking and Frightening & Intense Scenes takes a little bit of practice. Go slowly and savour the detail as your friends struggle to work out the movie title.
  • Replace the name of any main character with X or Y or “the main character” so that it does not become completely obvious too quickly.
  • Leave a main plot device or spoiler that is mentioned until right at the end.

Enjoy and do let me know if you find some particularly good ones!

A few examples

Here, to get you in the mood, are a few samples that should not be too hard…

Lightning can frighten smaller children

Characters appear to be not wearing any garments, which can influence children. Later on when the characters are all grown up they each become “twitterpated” in which they each experience intense feelings and an attraction to the opposite gender. One character thumps uncontrollably when he is approached and touched by another. A character turns rigid and blushes before falling over when a another touches him on the nose. Several characters are shot by hunters and/or poachers but no blood is shown. There is no profanity or alcohol. A scene where a character is shot and killed may scare smaller children. The death is very dramatic. Lightning can frighten smaller children. There is a large forest fire which engulfs some homes, causing characters to cry out in fear and flee in a frenzy. This may scare young children, especially those afraid of fire. Click for the answer.

The ending is very emotional

There are several drawings of nude women. Full frontal nudity is shown. A 19 year old woman strips down for a man to draw her naked. She strips down revealing her bare butt. She lays down on the couch and her left breast is shown for about 20 seconds. The man and woman have sex in a Model T Ford. Nothing is shown on screen but there is implied climax when the woman presses her hand against the window. A man shoots at another man but he does not get shot. A guard shoots people and one person gets shot to death. He then shoots himself to death. A woman gives the middle finger to a man, 8 uses of shit, A lot of damns, many as goddamn, Some uses of hell, 1 use of son of a bitch, 1 F word (very rare for PG-13). People are shown smoking throughout the film. The ending is very emotional. The film tells a true story. Lots of peril and disaster violence. People drown and freeze to death. People fall off of decks, dishes and furniture go all over the place. A man is briefly shown with blood on his face. Click for the answer.

Thousands of people are put in peril by a nuclear missile

Brief full-frontal nudity of a male toddler. A brief moment where a planet explodes in space, killing millions of people.Rape and massacre are both referenced in a newspaper. A thug holds characters captive in an alley, he threatens them at gunpoint demanding for her handbag, she drops the purse and when he goes to pick it up, she kicks him in the face with her heel. At the same instance, he fires his gun at her, the bullet is caught by another character and the thug runs off. A man is run over by a train. Nothing shown, except the shredded hat he was wearing. A missile crash lands and explodes in the San Andreas Fault, causing a massive earthquake that creates damage across the region. 1 or 2 “Asses” and 1 “Sh–“. Two characters both smoke cigars. A young character races a speeding passenger train and playfully crosses the track at a road crossing a split second before the train reaches it. Thousands of people are put in peril by a nuclear missile that causes a massive earthquake that threatens to destroy the entire state of California as a character races to stop the disaster. Click for the answer.

She sends the cat off in the rain alone

Implied throughout is the fact that both main characters use their sexuality as a source of income. In one character’s case, she is a glamorous escort, though there is never a mention of her actually having sex with any of her customers (whom she calls “rats” and “super rats”). The other character is the “kept” sexual companion to a wealthy woman. There is some kissing and some scenes in which characters are shown in bed. A nightclub striptease is seen in its initial stages, revealing the stripper’s bare back. She undresses down to her waist but has on a bra. She then turns toward the audience, begins to unfasten the bra front, and the camera moves away at the last minute. One character has an uncontrollable, hysterical reaction to very bad news. She destroys her apartment and throws her cat against the wall. In a second emotional scene, she sends the cat off in the rain alone. One “damn”. Two “hell”s. Characters drink and smoke in scene after scene. Consumption of alcohol is a primary activity of the players. There is one lengthy party in which everyone is shown to be drinking heavily and many people are very drunk. A character plays one lengthy scene completely inebriated. Her long cigarette holder is played as part of her “wild” girl character. Click for the answer.

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