'Riddick' Gets and R an 'Killer Joe' is "Destroyed" in Today's MPAA Ratings Bulletin

Latest MPAA Ratings: BULLETIN NO: 2247
Latest MPAA Ratings: BULLETIN NO: 2247

Another week and another new rating for William Friedkin's Killer Joe, or should I say Killer Joe: A Twisted Redneck Trailer Park Murder Story. The DVD and Blu-ray for Killer Joe will be released on December 21 in an unrated form and I have to assume this new, R-rated cut will be released in Walmart stores and similar outlets that don't want to release unrated material with graphic nudity and violence.

The more interesting thing about the decision to cut it down to an R brings me back to my interview with Friedkin in which I asked him about the NC-17 rating and he said:

Cutting would not have made it mass appeal. Cutting it would have been the equivalent of what members of the United States government and military leaders said about the Vietnam War. They said, "We have to destroy Vietnam in order to save it," and that's what I would have done to Killer Joe. To get an R rating I would have had to destroy it in order to save it and I wasn't interested in doing that.

Who's up for buying a destroyed version of Killer Joe?

Additionally, this week brings the R-rating for Vin Diesel's Riddick. The Chronicles of Riddick was rated PG-13 after the R-rated Pitch Black, but it would seem this third installment is returning to the franchise roots. A release date, however, has not yet been confirmed, though an early 2013 release has been mentioned.

You can click on any of the titles mentioned above for more information, otherwise, here are the latest MPAA ratings from Bulletin #2247.

Any Day Now
Rated R For sexual content, language and some drug use.
Black Rock
Rated R For some strong violence, pervasive language, sexual references and brief graphic nudity.
A Christmas Wedding Date
Rated PG For some mild rude humor and suggestive content.
Dead Man Down
Rated R For violence, language throughout and a scene of sexuality.
Rated R For sexual content including a graphic image, violence and language.
Release Date: TBA 2013
Rated R For strong and disturbing violence, sexuality, graphic nudity, drug use and language,
Rated R For strong and crude sexual content including graphic animated sequences, language and some violent images.
Release Date: November 2, 2012
Rated R For violence, pervasive language and some sexuality.
Rated R For violence.
Rated R For strong violence, language and some sexual content/nudity.
Release Date: TBA 2013
Rated R For language, some sexual content and brief disturbing images.
Release Date: November 2, 2012
  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/AS/ AS

    What nonsense.

  • http://www.ropeofsilicon.com/profile/maja/ maja

    That Killer Joe title is dreadful. Seems to sell it as a comedy.

    • Good Grief

      Well, it's a pretty dreadful film.

    • http://thefilmgoersproject.com filmgoermatt

      It is a comedy, albeit a pitch-black one and not the sort of wacky farce this ridiculous new title sells it as.

  • Good Grief

    I watched "Killer Joe" over the weekend and was utterly shocked that scene to cause the film to get its NC-17 rating was considered so shocking. Sure, it was disturbing but no more so than a number of scenes found in modern horror films.
    I was more shocked by the blatant penetration shot crammed in there for no apparent reason.

    • http://www.rabidpictures.com Yaz

      I would argue that the difference between the contents of the scene in question in Killer Joe, and those 'found in modern horror films', was the factor of sexual humiliation. I don't think the violence was as much an issue as the manner in which it was incorporated and the tone of the whole moment.

      I found it quite disturbing and I have a very high tolerance for gore, etc... And I think that was all because of how it was executed on screen and again, the tone of it all.

      • Good Grief

        I'm just saying that films like "I Spit on Your Grave," that exist to give the audience sexual humiliation for an extended period of time, get R ratings. I was surprised by all the hullabuloo regarding "Killer Joe" because, while obviously graphic in nature, it, in my opinion, wasn't anything overtly shocking. Well, no more shocking than other movies, that is.
        A vile rape scene, drawn out for sheer entertainment, just seems a tad more controversial than what I saw in this film.

        But hey, horses for courses. What I'M not shocked by may, indeed, make many feel offended.

        • http://www.rabidpictures.com Yaz

          Hm, I agree with you when it comes tot he I Spit On Your Grave comment... Though I was under the impression that the 'uncensored' version was indeed NC-17... I could be wrong though.

          Anyway, I get what you're saying. There's not denying the MPAA plays by it own rules when handing out ratings... They're all over the place when it comes to their reasoning.

    • http://thefilmgoersproject.com filmgoermatt

      Yeah, Killer Joe doesn't deserve an NC-17. As for "sexual humiliation," check out The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo if you want to see some especially nasty rape in a major, R-rated studio film. Infinitely worse than the chicken drumstick fellatio, and yet here we are, because one film had the advantage of a studio and one didn't. The MPAA's bias strikes again.

      • http://www.rabidpictures.com Yaz

        Agreed, but the MPAA is very mum on their decisions to begin with... Who knows why and how they look to each film...


        I will say that I for one found the scene in Killer Joe to be far more derogatory than that in Dragon Tattoo. I understand and agree that the act of 'rape' is far more severe than a guy forcing a girl to suck on a chicken drumstick, but you have to also consider the manner in which each was shown and put to screen.

        I suppose, from a visual standpoint, I found the scene of Killer Joe to be far more drawn out, visceral and damning in general. Even the aspect in that scene of the husband just standing by and allowing it all to happen... I feel like those factors might have some kind of impact on the rating decisions...

        I dunno, both films in question have their share of disturbing scenes, but it's hard to compare them to one another... And we'll never know how and why MPAA make the decisions they do with all these variables in play.

        • http://www.rabidpictures.com Yaz


          It's also worth mentioning that Joe bloodies her face before forcing her to suck on the drumstick... I dunno, I'm thinking things like this must impact their decision when it comes to rating something...

  • Scott M

    Glad I saw Killer Joe in theatres before all this nonsense. Will have to take special care to make sure I get the NC-17/Unrated version on Bluray and not some cut down version. It probably deserves an NC-17 rating (at least in a world where that isn't the film equivalent of having AIDS), but it's a really fantastic movie, one of my favorites of the year.

  • Corey

    Well, now I'm glad I saw "Killer Joe" before this insanity occurred. I was already planning on buying the Blu-ray, so now I will be VERY sure I do.

  • Kyle

    "Killer Joe: A Twisted Redneck Trailer Park Murder Story"????

    Really?? How original. God, what a fucking insult to such a great film. What's the point? Nobody in the right mind is going to buy that censorship crap!