Picture from The Happening
Overall C

Something strange is happening in the eastern United Sates. It appears that a deadly plague is sweeping across the country. Although they can't quite get a grasp on how devastating this problem may be, Elliot Moore (Mark Wahlberg) and his wife (Zooey Deschanel) flee their home in a desperate race to outpace the mysterious epidemic.

Violence D
Sexual Content A-
Profanity B-
Substance Use A

Why is The Happening rated R?

Official MPAA Rating: The Happening is rated R for for violent and disturbing images.

Please read our content details for this movie to help determine if it is suitable for members of your family. We also encourage you to check our full review and our movie information page.

This thriller’s biggest issue for parents are the depictions of various people taking their own lives with a variety of methods, like shooting themselves with guns, stabbings with pointed objects and falling from buildings. Some of these are particularly explicit, for instance lions in a zoo bite off a man’s arms. Another character lies down in front of a large lawnmower, and we see the mower driving over him. Another scene shows two young people being killed by a person with a shotgun—one of the shootings is seen on screen. There are many moments of peril and tension, including “jump” scenes. A number of mild profanities are heard along with terms of deity. A mild sexual comment is heard.