Task Force X has officially been let loose, and though early reviews threatened to cast a looming shadow over the film’s arrival, Suicide Squad is still tracking for a commendable $140 million haul this weekend.
That’s a healthy debut by any stretch, though it’s the movie’s PG-13 rating that has been called into question by some notable industry folk – specifically, Mike Birbiglia, Judd Apatow and Don’t Think Twice producer Ira Glass.
Referencing SXSW darling Don’t Think Twice as an example – Birbiglia’s pic was deemed edgy enough to warrant an R rating, despite only containing strong language and some mild drug use – the creators in question believe that the Motion Picture Association of America was too lenient when it comes to Warner Bros.’ Suicide Squad.
Suicide Squad has machine gun killings and bombings and got a PG-13 rating. @Dontthinkmovie gets an R because adults smoke pot. Confusing?
— Mike Birbiglia (@birbigs) August 3, 2016
Studios own the ratings board. Violence sells so they make pot and sex the scary thing so they seem caring. https://t.co/S3VpKxUXbu
— Judd Apatow (@JuddApatow) August 3, 2016
I guess the geezers at @MPAA haven’t noticed: shootings are a big problem while weed’s being decrimininalized. https://t.co/EvORqB8Zz9
— Ira Glass (@iraglass) August 4, 2016
Few would argue that Birbiglia, Apatow and Ira Glass are wrong in saying that blockbusters get a free pass in their ability to earn a PG-13 rating – do you really think Suicide Squad would earn $140 million on its opening weekend had David Ayer’s feature been rated R? – but sadly, the way in which ratings board view sex and drug use is unlikely to change anytime soon.
Suicide Squad opens today, August 5.