Why is Otherhood rated R? Here is what earned the strong rating

Angela Bassett and Patricia Arquette in Otherhood
Why is Otherhood rated R? See below. Pic credit: Netflix

Families who were looking for something to watch together over the weekend were probably taken by surprise that Netflix’s new film Otherhood was slapped with an R rating.

The film involves three mothers who seek to reconnect with their sons and while doing so, learn a lot about themselves and way too much about the personal lives of their boys. And while most of the film is wholesome in tone, it does earn its rating over one small moment.

But how could something small lead to a harsh rating by the MPAA? Well, here is how Otherhood became rated R.

YouTube video player

Otherhood | Official Trailer | Netflix

Why is Otherhood rated R?

According to IMDB, Otherhood is “Rated R for language, sexual references, and brief nudity.” And I know what some might be thinking. “That doesn’t sound that bad.” Well, in the context of the film it is rather tame.

But it’s the very first warning that keeps this movie from being PG-13. And that’s “language.”

The reasons for this are so small (and a bit silly) that it can be easily overlooked, but it involves a very old rule enforced by the MPAA involving the F-word.

It’s a common practice by the MPAA to slap an R rating on any film that has more than one use of the F-word. And in one scene, Otherhood decides to repeat the expletive twice.

Minor spoiler ahead for Otherhood: The scene in question occurs about an hour into the film and involves the three mothers sitting around eating pizza at a diner. Angela Bassett’s character Carol Walker is buzzed after drinking at a party that her son was attending.

Responding to the two other moms Basset says, “F*** the first mission.” Patricia Arquette’s character responds with, “What about the boys?” To which Basset exclaims, “F*** the boys.”

Again, this is a very silly long-held rule by the MPAA, but one they have been consistently stern on for years.

More on Otherhood from Netflix

Outside of the use of the F-word, Otherhood examines mother-son relationships in a very adult way. Some of it involves sexual elements, extremely suggestive innuendo, such as one of the sons working for a magazine called, “All Balls,” and it even has a moment of suggestive nudity involving a mom not wearing a bra.

That said, most of it is not extreme enough to warrant the R Rating.

In summary, it may not be appropriate to watch Otherhood with younger children, but it’s an endearing film for grown-up parents with children that are entering adulthood. For that alone, it’s worth checking out over the weekend.

Otherhood is now streaming on Netflix.

Notify of

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments