‘Joker’ Lands A Rating That No Live-Action Batman Movie Has Ever Received

Warner Bros.

1989’s Batman is rated PG-13 (for “action violence and some sexual references”), as is Batman Returns, Batman Forever, Batman & Robin, Batman Begins, The Dark Knight, The Dark Knight Rises, Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, Justice League, and, technically, Suicide Squad. Not a single live-action Batman movie, with the exception of the camp-fest starring Adam West, has been rated anything other than PG-13, unlike the first Joker solo film. (Joker is premiering at the Venice International Film Festival — it’s a FILM.)

The Motion Picture Association of America has slapped Joker, starring Joaquin Phoenix, Robert De Niro, and Zazie Beetz, with an R rating for “strong bloody violence, disturbing behavior, language, and brief sexual images.” That’s compared to Suicide Squad‘s PG-13 for “sequences of violence and action throughout, disturbing behavior, and suggestive content and language.”

I guess Phoenix’s Joker is more TwIsTeD than Jared Leto’s, after all.

Joker follows Arthur Fleck, “a man struggling to find his way in Gotham’s fractured society. A clown-for-hire by day, he aspires to be a stand-up comic at night… but finds the joke always seems to be on him. Caught in a cyclical existence between apathy and cruelty, Arthur makes one bad decision that brings about a chain reaction of escalating events in this gritty character study,” according to the official plot summary. Joker opens on October 4.