The Age Restrictions on R-Rated Movies Need to Change

As the lines between PG-13 and R-rated movies continues to blur, a change needs to be made to movie viewing age restrictions

Ella Smith, Staff Writer/Social Media Manager

  In the U.S., anyone under the age of 17 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian over the age of 21 to watch an R rated movie. In my opinion, people 16 and older should be allowed to watch R rated movies. As teenagers we see so much mature stuff in our daily lives through TV shows, books, music, games, and more. 

  If you can drive yourself to the theater, you should be able to watch any movie you choose. You are mature enough to be able to drive a car and have control of such a dangerous thing, then it seems only fair for you to also be able to see any movie you want. The government is trusting you to drive a vehicle that could be deadly but they don’t trust you to see a movie that has violence or nudity? 

  Another thing is that at 16 you are probably either a junior or senior in high school and are already dealing with the many things high school brings. These 16-years-olds are preparing for adulthood already and something that comes along with adulthood is maturing and becoming more responsible. 

  The line between PG-13 and R rated movies has become even more faded over the years. For example, Jaws released in 2011, is rated PG despite the bloody attacks. Anyone 13+ can see this movie and those younger than 13 are able to with a parent or guardian. Yet, the Fear Street Trilogy has an R rating and is similarly bloody and gory. 

  I’ve seen many argue that teenagers are not ready for some of the themes in R rated movies. However, teenagers are not as naïve as many adults think. They are used to the sexual and graphic themes that come along with R rated movies. 

  All in all, teenagers 16 and older should be able to see R rated movies without feeling like they need to sneak into movies because they are too young because they already encounter everything R rated movies show in their daily lives.