Why is Rent rated PG-13?
Official MPAA Rating: Rent is rated PG-13 for for mature thematic material involving drugs and sexuality, and for some strong language.
In spite of the PG-13 rating, there are frequent depictions of Mimi purchasing drugs and shooting up (content usually reserved for R-rated titles). Her seductive and lewd dance routine at the bar earns her the money she needs to buy her stash. Numerous same-sex kisses and cross-dressing scenes are portrayed. While violence is relatively brief, one man is mugged and beaten in an alley. He subsequently rigs a bank machine in order to get free cash. Later when Maureen hosts a protest rally, hostility breaks out between the crowd and police. Set in the early era of the AIDS epidemic, the characters worry about the outcome of this disease that is propagated, in part, by their community’s lifestyle. Using crude and explicit dialogue, the characters also display a lack of respect for the livelihoods or reputations of others.