How old should kids be to watch rated R movies?

Jen - posted on 12/27/2010 ( 39 moms have responded )

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My 10-year-old son is not allowed to watch rated R movies. Of course he claims almost all of the kids in the 5th grade at his school are allowed to. I know some of them are, but I don't think its a good idea to put these images in children's heads at such a young age. He is interested in Nightmare on Elm Street and Chucky . We would like to know if other families allow their preteens to watch rated R movies?

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Di - posted on 01/03/2011

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My kids never watched R rated movies at our house- but your son is correct- lots of young kids watch these. As a teacher I am always being asked questions like- have you seen Chucky Miss? Do you like Nightmare on Elm Street? I tell them that they shouldn't be watching these movies and to just say no! Our kids are growing up way too fast as it is- TV is bad enough!

Spencer - posted on 02/20/2014

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I am 12 years old, and this is your 10 year old is right. I started watching Scream, Halloween at 9, now I am a big fan. The only time your child shouldn't be watching this films is if they have something wrong with them and they think it's real.

Zombie - posted on 04/18/2013

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Personally, I'm a horror film junkie, and have many friends (with children) in the industry. None of us let our kids watch it, and I agree with the posters that suggest using the film rating as a guide (my daughter is 9 1/2). If he really wants to see 'scary' films, try checking out 'Something Wicked This Way Comes', "The Goonies", or "Monster Squad", "Monster House" and the recent kid-friendly zombie film "ParaNorman" all geared for a younger audience and age appropriate, while also having some 'scary' elements that will appeal to him. If you have Netflix, look up the films and read the reviews - many comments by parents will let you know if it's something you want to let him see. You can also check out film reviews at imdb.com and read reviews there.
Hope this helps, and happy viewing!

Donna - posted on 12/30/2010

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I tend to go with the age recomendation on the item! My kids are 8 and 9. I always think back to when I was younger, and finally the excitement of being 17 and getting to go to a "R" rated movie at the theater! I say just go with your "gut"....if your kids don't like you for saying NO..then you are doing your job right!

Gwen - posted on 11/06/2013

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if your child is interested in watching scary movies, the best thing to do the first time is to watch the movie with them with the commentary on. that will explain the movie and make it alot less scary.

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Spencer - posted on 02/20/2014

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I hate it when you all say 'sex is to bad for them to be exposed to' you all have children!?!?!

Lara - posted on 08/12/2013

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My 11 year old claims that everyone in her class watches 15s. She is not allowed unless its been rated 12 on sky or Netflix she sometimes tries to trick me into watching 15s saying they're 12s she always fools her dad

Kayla Anne - posted on 07/24/2013

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It depends on what the movie is rated R for. I let my 11 year old see horror movies only if they are rated R for violence and language. I will not let my daughter see anything with nudity. It also depends on how scared your son gets. If he has ever been scared by a scary story, or a creepy video recently, then you should wait a little bit, or show him something not so scary, like "The Birds" or "Jaws". If he never got scared at anything this year, then you should show him something like "The Ring", or "Paranormal Activity".
I hope this was helpful!

Barbara - posted on 04/24/2013

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there is a reason why R rated movies are for adults and not for children. 10 years old should be looking at only pg movies and not even pg13 movies.!!!!!!

Zombie - posted on 04/18/2013

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Personally, I'm a horror film junkie, and have many friends (with children) in the industry. None of us let our kids watch it, and I agree with the posters that suggest using the film rating as a guide (my daughter is 9 1/2). If he really wants to see 'scary' films, try checking out 'Something Wicked This Way Comes', "The Goonies", or "Monster Squad", "Monster House" and the recent kid-friendly zombie film "ParaNorman" all geared for a younger audience and age appropriate, while also having some 'scary' elements that will appeal to him. If you have Netflix, look up the films and read the reviews - many comments by parents will let you know if it's something you want to let him see. You can also check out film reviews at imdb.com and read reviews there.
Hope this helps, and happy viewing!

Shawnn - posted on 04/17/2013

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Well, lets see. They won't let a kid under the age of 17 view an R rated movie in a theatre...so that's a fair guideline, I guess.

I let my sons view them (depending on the movie) at around the age of 15 or so. That's a pretty common age for that sort of thing around here.

10??? Nope, mom, not "all the kids in 5th grade" are doing it, sorry.

The other guideline is that if YOU wouldn't have wanted to watch it, HE doesn't need to. Nightmare on Elm street? Chucky?? IMO, neither of those are for a 10 YO, nor for a 12 YO. 15 is pushing it, although I watched "Nightmare on Elm street" when I was 16 or so. Didn't enjoy it, but sat thru it, anyway. (The guys just used it as an excuse to have the girls hanging on them screaming...LOL)

Msminnie - posted on 04/14/2013

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My own mother didn't let me start watching rated R movies until I was literally 17, i think the sex scenes made her feel awkward.

Yvonne - posted on 10/19/2012

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I know with my 9 year olds they want to watch everything that they can....general rule of thumb for my husband and I are if we preview the movie first and the are any and I mean any kinda sex scenes in it they are not allowed to watch it! If there are things that we can explain to them in younger term then i will consider letting them watch it!

Karla - posted on 10/15/2012

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i think you are right like my 10 year old son is intersted in halloween and friday the 13th and he has ipods and as a parent your want to make your child safe i think your son should be like 14 or something

Emelien Da - posted on 10/14/2012

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I have a 12 yr old girl, 6 yr old girl and a 4 yr old girl. Our kids are still as emotional as we were at that age, just they are exposed to more visual stuff than we ever were. Movies like the above, what does it really do for a child, bcos at 10, he is still a child, and we has parents should try to help them keep their innocence for as long as they can. Anyway even if he does watch these movies, at 10 will he tell u that he's having nightmares, I dn't think so. Gosh I watched the movie "It" when I was a teen, and to this day, I hate clowns, go figure.

Ashley - posted on 10/14/2012

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A lot of parents do let their kids, and they seem to handle it well, but thinking about it, those are the kids who aren't the best influence honestly. My kids aren't going to be watching that stuff until like 16, maybe 17. Of course, I only have one 5 year old, so, I haven't thought about it too much. Hope this helped! :D

Sarah - posted on 09/10/2011

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well it all depends if they are girls and it has girl things NOT guy things and their is no sexual content they are going to have the same thing so why not

Brandi - posted on 01/03/2011

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I am super protective of what my son watches. I don't have cable television, so I don't really know what is on tv anymore. I do know there are many tv shows that are not good for children to watch, in my opinion. My son is eight years old and has many friends who are allowed to watch rated R movies without parent supervision. I have let him watch a movie that was rated R, but I had seen it first and made the decision he could handle it. I watched it with him and explained things as it went along. I think it also depends on the child. Some can separate the difference of reality and fantasy, while others can not. I don't watch horror movies, but he asks about them because his friends watch them. I say keep to your rules and follow what you think is right.

Amy - posted on 01/03/2011

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For me, it depends on the movie. If I have not seen the movie before, either my hubby or myself watches it. The rating system is extremely biased and subjective. Two movies with virtually the same content and language could get two different ratings.

If in doubt, watch the movies without the kids and then decide for yourself on a movie by movie basis.

Sherri - posted on 01/02/2011

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Depends on the movie. Some I did allow at that age and some I thought were much too mature. Depends on the reason it is rated R. Scary movies we allowed, R rated movies due to sex we did not allow.



We allow our 12 & 13yr olds to play some of the M rated video games too. Call of Duty, Halo I have seen them and did my research before I ever allowed them in the house. I didn't see a huge problem with those games.

Tracey - posted on 12/31/2010

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Rated R movies in my book are for parents and not any preteens at all... I wont aloud to watch Rated R movies til i was like 16... and i think that parents that let their kids watch Rated R movies are sick and need jail time... for it...

Michelle - posted on 12/29/2010

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it depends on why a movie is rated r, there are many movies rated r or pg-13 because a specific word is used in them. We never let the kids watch a movie that is rated pg-13 or r unless we have already watched it and deem it ok for their viewing.

Amanda - posted on 12/29/2010

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My son just turned 7, and he doesn't watch R rated movies. He has informed me that at a friends house they get to watch scary movies but I will not tolerate it here! If the movie is rated R the child needs to wait until they are at that age to watch it! And if it's something that isn't necessarily considered a gorey, scary movie than I'd consider looking into it but as far as I'm concerned he's got a wild enough imagination that I don't want to bring anything morbid into the mix! Lol...I guess it depends on maturity level. Maybe by letting him watch some of one of the movies he's interested in with the lights on and your presence maybe he'll realize they aren't as cracked up as they say it is! :)

Lissa - posted on 12/29/2010

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In the UK we have U,PG,12A,12.15,18
I let my almost 14 year old watch 15's if I have viewed them first and deem them suitable but would never let him watch an 18. My 5 and 6 year old are allowed U and PG. Many parents do let their children watch movies that are too old for them. I know of someone who let a bunch of boys watch an 18 at a 10th birthday sleepover and some of them were having nightmares for months.

Tammy - posted on 12/29/2010

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I think that 10 is too young for R rated. If I'm not sure about a movie that is PG13, then I watch it first. Of course at BMs, my SK get to watch anything they want. My sd has even watched the Jacka@# movies. I don't think they are even appropriate for an adult to watch!

Leslie - posted on 12/29/2010

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It all depeneds on the child I oldest son was allowed to watch R movies at the age of 2

Michele - posted on 12/29/2010

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I am super protective of what my kids watch, The ratings are there for a reason. I have a 15 year old that I don't let watch R rated movies. It's up to you, but as for me, i would not allow that until they are old enough to see it in a theater. They don't need gore and violence and sex in their lives before they are ready, they will encounter it without you allowing it and bringing it into your own home for them.

Teresa - posted on 12/29/2010

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I'm not sure what "age" is going to be okay. I do know my 13 year old son does NOT watch R rated movies and didn't watch PG13, until he was 12, almost 13 and only after my husband or I had seen the movie first.

Kim - posted on 12/28/2010

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My children watch R rated movies. My younger son is 4 and the only R rated movie he's ever watched is Jaws. He loves those movies and is infatuated with Sharks. He watches shark week and will buy anything that involves sharks. I allowed him because I remember watching Jaws when I was a young child. I'm not permanently scarred from it! My older son is 10 years old and he also watches R rated movies occasionally. Any movie that he wants to see that is R rated has to be viewed by myself or husband before his viewing. If it is just foul language in a movie then I don't mind. I basically view that the sexual content is not to explicit. He is a happy, go lucky kids. I do know that most of the other children that he has had over or gone to their houses also watch R rated movies.

Allie - posted on 12/28/2010

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Everyone is going to have a opinion on this topic. I say you need to do what is best for YOUR family!

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My 9 year olds won't watch PG-13 movies until they are 12/13. I have just recently started letting them be on the computer while I watch one (same room) as long as the content isn't TOO bad. Of course, I think a bomb could go off and they wouldn't notice if they were on the computer. ;)

For R rated..... Not sure at this point, but most likely not under 15... and possibly not til 17.

Angie - posted on 12/28/2010

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Unfortunately, he is right; a lot of parents allow their young children to watch rated R movies. I know a family that allowed their 2nd grader to watch The Exorcism of Emily Rose. My oldest is almost 18 so he watches rated R movies but my 12 and 10 year olds only watch G and PG movies. I agree with you, it's not wise to allow young children to watch these movies.

Nelly - posted on 12/28/2010

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At home we tend to follow the ratings on tv, movies, music and video games. I would not allow any of my children at this age to watch rated R movies and they are 16,14,12 and 10 years old

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