Boyhood was perhaps unfairly given an R rating by the MPAA, and a theater in New York has chosen to ignore it.
When Boyhood was handed an R rating by the MPAA, it was a bit of a shock. The film does a marvelous job of depicting life as a teenager, but the MPAA has spoken and said that teenagers shouldn’t be allowed to see the film (at least not without a guardian present).
This doesn’t make much sense.
Boyhood was rated R “for language including sexual references, and for teen drug and alcohol use.” In other words, the MPAA rated it R for life. If the MPAA expects a teen to make it to adulthood without experiencing language, sexual references, or drug and alcohol use, they are very out of touch.
To combat this, New York’s IFC Center has elected to admit those under 17 into Boyhood, a move we support 100%. This is a movie that demands to be seen by teenagers, and it should be seen on the kind of screen it was meant to be seen on: a theater screen. The theater has offered this statement:
While the MPAA has assigned “Boyhood” a rating of R, recommending that no one under 17 be admitted without a parent or guardian, IFC Center feels that the film is appropriate viewing for mature adolescents. Accordingly, the theater will admit high school age patrons at its discretion.
Boyhood will be expanding to more cities around the nation tomorrow and in the following weeks, and while other theaters won’t likely follow the example set by New York’s IFC Center, we recommend the film to audiences younger than the MPAA suggests.
This is a film that is a landmark cinematic achievement that will speak to audiences, and hope everyone will have a chance to see it in the coming weeks. A list of theaters showing the film is available on Boyhood‘s official site.
Feel free to ask questions about the film’s content in the comments below. We’ll be more than happy to answer them.