When a film about superheroes is given an R-rating, people would be safe to assume it’s because of the language and graphic violence showed throughout the movie. Deadpool is a great example of that. Truthfully, it’s the only proper way to portray Wade Wilson. He’s a foul-mouthed savage with the intent to wreak havoc with maximum effort.
When the final Wolverine film was due to hit theaters, the R-rating surprised some, and while it was chock-full of bloody violence and explicit language… That wasn’t exactly the reason Logan‘s director wanted the rating. James Mangold’s intention runs much deeper.
While speaking at the 2018 Writers Guild Association Beyond Words Panel presented by Audi in Los Angeles, James had this to say:
“You have to have a slightly off-pedal goal for your film, and the people are gonna go ‘What the f*** is that 8-minute scene between Professor X and Logan? That’s like 8 minutes of two guys in a tank talking.’ And it’s like ‘Yeah. That’s not gonna change because the vibe of this movie is an adult drama.’ That’s why, for instance, we wanted an R-rating. It wasn’t because of the violence and it wasn’t because of the language, but because I didn’t have to write a movie, and neither did my compatriots, for 11-year-olds. If we had a rated-R movie there were gonna be no Happy Meals. There can be no action figures. There was gonna be no marketing on Saturday morning cartoons or anything like it. So, then suddenly you’re not making a movie written for someone under 14, 15, and that changes the length of scenes. It changes what they’re talking about.”
Mangold’s desire to set Logan apart from other comicbook films was realized, and his team has been rewarded for that lofty goal. The film has earned an Oscar nomination for “Best Adapted Screenplay,” and satisfied Wolverine’s legion of fans. We’ll all be tuned into The Academy Awards on March 4th to see if Logan takes home the golden statue.