Top 10 Movies that Most Deserve a Harsher MPAA Rating

There's always been some controversy around the Motion Picture Association of America's (MPAA) film rating system. Sometimes, it can feel like the ratings assigned to certain films don't quite line up with the content within. Today, we're diving into that very discussion and we want your take on it.

The question we're posing is, which movies do you think most deserve a harsher MPAA rating? This is your chance to weigh in on those films that, in your opinion, were a bit more intense, explicit, or mature than their assigned rating would suggest.

The MPAA rating system was established in 1968 as a voluntary system intended to help parents determine what films might be appropriate for their children. The system originally included four ratings - G, M, R, and X, but over time, it evolved into the current system of G, PG, PG-13, R, and NC-17 ratings. The criteria for these ratings include factors like language, nudity, violence, drug use, and thematic content. However, with all its complexities, subjectivities, and nuances, the system has often been subject to debate and criticism.

Reflect back on those movie-watching experiences where you found yourself thinking, "Shouldn't this movie be rated differently?" Maybe it was a film with a PG-13 rating, but the intense action scenes felt like they strayed into R-rated territory. Or perhaps it was a movie with an R rating, but the mature themes it explored made you wonder if it should've been given the rarely-used NC-17.
The Top Ten
1 Monty Python and the Holy Grail (Rated PG)

Suggested rating: PG-13 for comic violence and some sexual innuendo.

2 The Grudge (Rated PG-13)
3 The Uninvited (Rated PG-13)
4 Poltergeist (1982) (Rated PG)

Spielberg and the director actually wanted this movie to be rated PG. I seriously don't know what was going on in their small, insane heads because this film has a very gory scene of a man's face being peeled off.

They used real skeletons in this movie...

Is this supposed to be a horror movie? How's this appropriate for kids?

5 The Haunting (1963) (Rated G)
6 Raiders of the Lost Ark (Rated PG)

The face-melting scene. Need I say more?

7 Taken (Rated PG-13)
8 Gremlins (Rated PG)

This movie, along with Temple of Doom, led to the creation of the PG-13 rating and needs to be rerated to that.

9 Forrest Gump (Rated PG-13)
10 The Passion of the Christ (Rated R)
The Contenders
11 Watership Down (Rated PG)

This should be bumped up to PG-13 for thematic material and violence involving disturbing and bloody images.

12 Howard the Duck (Rated PG)
13 Sixteen Candles (Rated PG)
14 The Hate U Give (Rated PG-13)
15 2001: A Space Odyssey (Rated G)

Suggested rating: PG-13 for some disturbing images, including a scene of violence.

16 The Lion King (Rated G)

This should be bumped up to PG for thematic material, including an on-screen (but non-graphic) death scene, and some (again non-graphic) violence.

Suggested rating: PG or even PG-13 for violence and tragic scenery.

17 Jaws (Rated PG)
18 The Hunchback of Notre Dame (Rated G)
19 The Adventures of Mark Twain (Rated G)

Yeah, this one should have a PG-13 rating for some intense scares. I mean, the main villain is Satan himself!

20 Drag Me to Hell (Rated PG-13)

I'm honestly surprised this one had a PG-13 label.

21 Alice in Wonderland (2010) (Rated PG)

Yeah, it had an eye-cutting scene! What was Tim Burton thinking?!

22 Cars 2 (Rated G)
23 Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom (Rated PG)

Suggested rating: PG-13 due to violence.

24 Top Gun (Rated PG)

Middle fingers everywhere, lots of profanity, a sex scene (although brief and hardly anything shown), and the death of Goose. PG-13 at least.

25 Akira (Rated R)

This film has to be the most violent movie I've ever seen (whether animated or not). Tetsuo's transformation scene honestly makes the crucifixion of Jesus in Passion of the Christ look less gory by comparison. I'm not sure how any Christians would react to that. I'm not trying to offend, by the way.

How this film was able to get away with an R rating is beyond me. So yeah, this should be re-rated NC-17 for extreme gore and violence.

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