Why is The Dark Knight (Batman) rated PG-13?
Official MPAA Rating: The Dark Knight (Batman) is rated PG-13 for for intense sequences of violence and some menace.
Perhaps the deepest, darkest Batman yet, this film pits the wealthy philanthropist who is determined to save his city from crime, against one of his iconic enemies—The Joker. While lessons regarding the need to fight corruption are evident, the conflict results in nearly continuous violence and verbal confrontations that are particularly disturbing for a film within the US MPAA PG-13 rating category. Violence includes frequent on-screen shootings (many are innocent bystanders who are gunned down indiscriminately), physical beatings and a man who threatens and assaults men and women (this villain holds a knife to his victims’ heads and discusses mutilating their face with the weapon). The brutality is perhaps made more disturbing through the use of topical terrorist themes and techniques, such as the use of bombs that are detonated to inflict fear and terror (in such places as hospitals and public transit), or implanted within humans. Verbal psychological torture is inflicted, with threats against children and women. There are also a couple of “jump scenes.” Language is limited to a few terms of Christian deity and a few mild profanities. A couple is briefly seen on a sofa, with the implication they were engaged in sexual activity. A scene with women wearing bikinis and a crude sexual term comprise the other sexual content. Social drinking is portrayed and a secondary character is seen smoking.