Classification Step By Step

■SCHEDULE: By law, movie companies send their films and film trailers to Alberta Film Classification before they show them to the public
■SCREEN: AFC has a fully equipped theatre, including 3D capability. Each film is watched from beginning to end without stopping, to duplicate the experience of a film patron
■VIEW: Each film is viewed by full-time, professional film classifiers who make individual assessments of the film's content, based on knowledge and experience
■TAKE NOTES: Classifiers note the frequency, detail (both audio and visual), intensity, and context of any potentially controversial material
■PUT IN CONTEXT: Overall theme and intent of the film is the most important factor in reaching the appropriate classification; each film is considered individually and as a whole, rather than as isolated portions taken out of context.
■DISCUSS: The individual assessments are used as a basis for lively, respectful discussion
■DECIDE: An appropriate age category and advisories when one or more elements of a film are considered to be more intense than might be expected in that rating category.
■DECREE: If consensus is lacking after discussion, the majority decision prevails. One classifier writes the Classification Report for this website and the rating is tweeted on @abfilmratings

Parents, guardians, and film patrons are expected to exercise individual responsibility and care when choosing movies for themselves and especially for their children.

Community Standards

Alberta Film Classification keeps records of:

  • aspects of film production and distribution
  • classification-related issues, such as controversial movies from around the world
  • information on previous Alberta film classifications and reactions to ratings

Alberta Film Classification interacts with people who care about movies:

  • filmmakers, festival organizers, theatre staff
  • film distributors
  • interest groups
  • conversations in social and traditional media
  • letters, telephone calls, workshops, and website feedback

Being aware of the cultural context for film content ensures that film classification decisions reflect the changing nature of the Alberta community.