A few months ago, I chronicled my thoughts as to why movies wind up being rated R vs being rated PG-13. I did so in the context of learning that Batman vs Superman was going to be released theatrically as PG-13, but the home release would include the so-called “Ultimate Edition,” which would be rated R.
I thought that I had made one point terrifically clear in that post, but apparently, not, so here it is again.
The rating that your movies gets from the MPAA does not determine how good your movie is.
Someone on facebook was decrying that Suicide Squad suffered from its various issues because it was rated PG-13. They made the bold assertion that it would have been a better movie had it been rated R. They had nothing to back that up, of course, except, well, nothing actually… they simply said it as if it was an immutable truth of the universe, like gravity, or cats landing on their feet.
Not withstanding the fact that every Marvel/Disney superhero movie is rated PG-13, the sheer naiveté of thinking that people will only like a movie if it carries and R rating is ludicrous.
A rating doesn’t make a movie good. If it did, Disney would make all rated R movies.
I have said it before and I will say it again: make the movie you want to make. Be true to the story and the characters, and don’t insult the audience. The rating of the film should be the last thing you are worried about, because the audience wants to be entertained, not pandered to. It doesn’t matter if the movie is a PG-13 or R. They want to see a good movie, not just a pre-packaged marketing ploy for associated toys, apparel, and anything else you can slap an image from the movie on.
I hope this had made my position on this issue clear enough. I thought it was pretty cut and dried before.
Now, I humbly submit myself to WB Studios, and any other studio, for employment as a “no shit, Sherlock” advisor/story-editor/reviewer to help them figure out what they’re doing wrong and how to fix it.
Kind of like a life coach for the entertainment industry.
Cheers, everybody. Enjoy your weekend.