By Chris Kavan - 03/02/16 at 05:14 PM CT
The ratings business seems to follow not pattern that I can discern. Some movies are rated months ahead of time and others seems to sneak in at the last minute before their release date. Both of the major films this week are of the latter - both coming in just days before they hit theaters. That seems like a bit of challenge, but I'm guessing both were pretty much hedging on the ratings they received and were just waiting for confirmation. It doesn't seem like the greatest model, but hey, if everyone comes away happy, who am I complain? Anyway, we have yet another big city getting blown all to heck and a female journalist trying to make in a war-torn Muslim world. Let's get cracking.
I enjoyed Olympus Has Fallen well enough. Watching Gerard Butler in his element, running around kicking ass, as The White House (and Washington DC itself) came under attack from terrorists. Aaron Eckhart played the president while Morgan Freeman added gravitas as the Speaker of the House and Dylan McDermott played the duplicitous Secret Service agent. This time the mayhem is going global as the leaders of the free world gather in London for the Prime Minister's funeral and we get London Has Fallen. Butler is back as the (new) head of the President's detail (Eckhart once again) while Freeman is also back, along with Radha Mitchell, Angela Bassett, Sean O'Bryan, Robert Forster and Melissa Leo. New faces joining the cast include Jackie Earle Haley, Alon Aboutboul and Shivani Ghai. This sequel looks just as ridiculously over-the-top as the original with so many major landmarks falling like dominoes. Let's face it, this is the type of movie you go to for entertainment, not for heady drama or deep meaning. Gunfights, explosions, yelling - and an R rating for strong violence and language throughout.
Trying to balance the seriousness of war with the comedic timing of Tina Fey, brings us the true story of journalist Kim Baker. Whiskey Tango Foxtrot follows Baker (Fey) as she goes from her regular job to reporting on the war in Afghanistan and Pakistan and all the trials and travails that come from being a fish-out-of-water in an area where Americans and women aren't exactly looked as with respect. Plus, you know, there's a war going on. Martin Freeman, Alfred Molina, Billy Bob Thornton, Margot Robbie, Nicholas Braun and Christopher Abbott help round out the cast. I just hope it does better than the last based-on-a-true story female-led journalist in a foreign country film - the underwhelming Our Brand is Crisis - which also tried to blend humor and drama. It's too early to say at this point, but the R rating for pervasive language, some sexual content, drug use and violent war images may or may not help things.
We also have an updated rating for Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, but only for the forth-coming DVD/Blu-Ray home release. The Ultimate Edition will be rated R for sequences of violence. This does not affect the theatrical PG-13 rating - but it will be interesting to see what they added to bump up this rating - it's only for violence so there must be something there that tipped the scale.
That is the big names for this week, but be sure to check out the full MPAA Bulletin below:
BATMAN V SUPERMAN: DAWN OF JUSTICE
The Ultimate Edition was rated R for sequences of violence.
NOTE: EDITED VERSION. CONTENT IS DIFFERENT FROM PG-13 VERSION, BULLETIN NO. 2393 (9/30/15). The Theatrical version was rated PG-13 for intense sequences of violence and action throughout, and some sensuality.
Rated R for bloody horror violence, grisly images, and language.
Rated R for some language.
Rated R for language and strong brutal violence throughout.
A KIND OF MURDER
Rated R for language and some violence.
LONDON HAS FALLEN
Rated R for strong violence and language throughout.
Rated PG for thematic elements throughout.
Rated R for strong language and some sexual content.
Rated R for violence, language, some sexuality/nudity and drug use.
Rated R for disturbing violent and sexual behavior, drug use, and language throughout.
WHISKEY TANGO FOXTROT
Rated R for pervasive language, some sexual content, drug use and violent war images.
Rated R for some sexual content.