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The Martian, The Last Witch Hunter and More in This Week's MPAA Ratings Bulletin

View Chris Kavan's Profile

By Chris Kavan - 09/09/15 at 10:10 AM CT

Another rather light update today as we have a serious Oscar contender enter the fray as well as a totally-not-serious Oscar contender, but really kick-ass fantasy film where Vin Diesel takes on the worst witches in history film. The first is Matt Damon's nearly one-man show that is The Martian and the other is Diesel's The Last Witch Hunter. The Martian may finally be the movie that breaks the curse of movies-based-on Mars (more in that in a bit) and I'm willing to give it shot.

MPAA Official Logo

I have seen trailers for The Martian, which makes it seem like a mix of Interstellar and Castaway with Matt Damon (who, hey, was in Interstellar) playing Mark Watney, one of a team on a manned mission to Mars who is presumed dead after a fierce storm separates him from the rest of the crew. But, lo and behold, he's not dead - and in order to survive for the extended time until rescue will (hopefully) arrive, he will have to use all his knowledge and ingenuity to do things like eat, drink and, you know, breath. It actually looks really good - supporting cast includes Kate Mara, Jessica Chastain, Kristen Wiig, Sebastian Stan, Sean Bean, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Jeff Daniels and Michael Peņa - so a pretty robust cast for a story about a lone guy trying to survive. Anyway, I hope against hope this breaks the spell of terrible movies about Mars that (for me) Includes: Mission to Mars, Ghosts of Mars, Red Planet, Mars Needs Moms, John Carter and The Last Days on Mars. Mars Attacks! doesn't count (since it didn't take place on Mars), in fact, the last decent film where Mars played a good role was Total Recall. So here's to The Martian - make the planet proud Matt Damon! The film earns a PG-13 rating for strong language, injury images, and brief nudity.

On a totally different wavelength we also have The Last Witch Hunter where Vin Diesel gets to act out all his Dungeon & Dragon fantasies (yes, he really is a big fan) by becoming a warrior who hunts down witches. He plays Kauler, a member of an army who will stop at nothing from stopping the Queen Witch from unleashing the Black Death on all of humanity. Of course the good are triumphant but as Kaulder deals the fatal blow he is cursed with immortality and must watch as his family and friends die while he himself must live on. Through the years he hunts down rogue witches until he is the, gasp, last witch hunter! But the Queen Witch has been resurrected and now he is all that stands between her and mankind's destruction. Okay, so it all sounds a little too "I, Frankenstein" or "Seventh Son" to probably make too big an impact. But if Pitch Black is any indication, it will be full of great one-liners and lots of action. It only gets a PG-13 for sequences of fantasy violence and frightening images so we'll see how far they push things.

The rest of the releases can be found below:


Rated G


Rated PG for action violence and mild crude humor.


Rated R for strong sexual content, substance abuse/disturbing behavior, and language.


Rated PG-13 for sequences of fantasy violence and frightening images.


Rated PG-13 for some strong language, injury images, and brief nudity.


Rated R for violence, language including sexual references, and brief drug use.


Rated PG for thematic elements and brief language.


Rated PG-13 for some thematic material and brief strong language.


Rated R for disturbing violent content, and some graphic nudity.


Rated PG-13 for some disturbing images and behavior.

Note: This is a Re-Rating voiding the previous "PG" rating,


Rated R for bloody violence and gore and language throughout.


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