The Motion Picture Association film rating system has origins that go back decades. They are enforced by the Motion Picture Association which put the current system into place in 1968. The ratings are based on these restrictions:
Rated G: Suggested for general audiences.
Rated M: Suggested for mature audiences – Parental discretion advised.
Rated R: Restricted – Persons under 16 not admitted, unless accompanied by parent or adult guardian.
Rated X: Persons under 16 not admitted.
Studios understand that once a movie falls into the R-rated category, its potential audience automatically shrinks. However, that has not stopped studios from releasing these and sometimes finding large demand for them. Recent R-rated successes, according to Box Office Mojo, are “Deadpool” which brought in $363 million in domestic ticket sales, and “American Sniper” which brought in $350 million. “American Sniper” is the most successful movie ever made by Clint Eastwood, based on ticket sales.
Like every other category, R-rated movies can be critical failures. R-rated movies are no exception. The level of talent aimed at the R-rated category is broad. Some have been made by famous directors and starred famous actors. Others are films almost no one has ever heard of.
To determine the worst R-rated movie of all time, 24/7 Tempo reviewed data from the Internet Movie Database (IMDb) and Rotten Tomatoes. We created an index based on the average critic rating from Rotten Tomatoes, the average audience rating from Rotten Tomatoes, and the average user rating from IMDb. We only considered feature films with at least 5,000 Rotten Tomatoes audience reviews, 10 Rotten Tomatoes critic reviews, and 10,000 IMDb user reviews. All data is for the most recent period available. Data was collected February 2021.
The worst R-rated movie ever made is Bucky Larson: Born to Be a Star released in 2011. Here are some details:
> Genre: Comedy
> Director(s): Tom Brady
> Starring: Nick Swardson, Don Johnson, Christina Ricci, Stephen Dorff
> Box office gross: $2.3 million
Fired from his job at a local grocery store, young Bucky leaves Iowa and heads to California to become a porn star. TimeOut described the movie as “dire, soul-crushing stuff.”
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