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Why Venom: Let There Be Carnage Is Rated PG-13

Carnage in Venom: Let There Be Carnage

When the first Venom movie was in production there were a lot of fans wondering, and hoping, that the film could end up with an R-rating. The character was capable of extreme violence and so it was possible, if the movie decided to show that violence, that the movie could end up being made for mature audiences only. In the end, the movie came out with a PG-13 rating, and considering how well the movie did at the box office, that was probably the right call. And so it's little surprise that sequel Venom: Let There Be Carnage has now been officially given a PG-13 rating as well, but now we know why.

The MPAA's official rating has been confirmed on the Venom sequel and with it comes the usual description of the elements in the movie that led to the rating decision. While the terminology is broad enough to mean anything, it's still potentially interesting to know that Venom: Let There Be Carnage has, by somebody's definition, "disturbing material." Here's the full rating detail,

Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of violence and action, some strong language, disturbing material and suggestive references.

While the specifics of what this all even means are lacking, it's pretty much what we would expect from Venom 2. Intense sequences of violence and action is exactly what people are going to go to the movie theater to see, so there's an expectation of that much. While the language describing the action might be slightly different from movie to movie, basically every film in the superhero genre has that. And the same goes for "some strong language." We know that language will be limited because the rating is PG-13, but it will still be there. The only real question on language is if the movie will take advantage of its one, non-sexual, f-bomb, which PG-13 films can still have.

Beyond that, the descriptions get a bit more nebulous, but honestly that's where the MPAA's language gets a little fun. It's regularly entertaining to see what words get used to try and describe a movie and it's potential objectionable aspects. "Suggestive references" would seem to indicate sexual references, but that's not specified. What else could the references be suggesting that parents might have a problem being suggested to their children? I feel like this one needs more detail.

Of course, nothing covers more ground than "disturbing material." The intense sequences of violence and action might be disturbing for some viewers, but since that's specified elsewhere, this must mean there is additional disturbing material that does not include action or violence. This probably isn't too surprising. The movie is about alien goo monsters that envelop people and invade their minds. That's fairly disturbing.

While some were disappointed that Venom wasn't an R-rated film, in the end, fans seemed to be ok with the movie they got, and if Venom: Let There Be Carnage is more of the same it will likely be another hit. The sequel hits theaters in October.

Dirk Libbey

CinemaBlend’s resident theme park junkie and amateur Disney historian. Armchair Imagineer. Epcot Stan. Future Club 33 Member.