Click to Skip Ad
Closing in...
‘Game Of Thrones’ Will Probably End After Season 8, But HBO Is Open To Prequels & More ‘Game Of Thrones’ Will Probably End After Season 8, But HBO Is Open To Prequels & More The 25 Best Action Movies Of The 21st Century So Far The 25 Best Action Movies Of The 21st Century So Far Relativity Puts 'Jane Got A Gun' And More Up For Sale As They Fight Off Bankruptcy Relativity Puts 'Jane Got A Gun' And More Up For Sale As They Fight Off Bankruptcy Zack Snyder Says Batman Has A "Crisis Of Conscience" In 'Batman v Superman: Dawn Of Justice' Plus New Pics Zack Snyder Says Batman Has A "Crisis Of Conscience" In 'Batman v Superman: Dawn Of Justice' Plus New Pics Venice 2015 Line-Up: 'Equals' With Kristen Stewart, 'Beasts Of No Nation,' 'The Danish Girl,' More Venice 2015 Line-Up: 'Equals' With Kristen Stewart, 'Beasts Of No Nation,' 'The Danish Girl,' More Watch: 4-Minute Tribute To Lars von Trier's Masterful Film Work Watch: 4-Minute Tribute To Lars von Trier's Masterful Film Work New 'Deadpool' Images, Ryan Reynolds Distances Himself From 'X-Men: Origins' New 'Deadpool' Images, Ryan Reynolds Distances Himself From 'X-Men: Origins' TIFF Images: Emma Watson In 'Colonia,' Brie Larson In 'Room,' Charlie Kaufman's 'Anomalisa' And More TIFF Images: Emma Watson In 'Colonia,' Brie Larson In 'Room,' Charlie Kaufman's 'Anomalisa' And More Richard Linklater Frontrunner To Direct 'The Rosie Project' Starring Jennifer Lawrence Richard Linklater Frontrunner To Direct 'The Rosie Project' Starring Jennifer Lawrence Watch: Blu-Ray Trailer For 'Avengers: Age Of Ultron' Plus 11 New Clips From The Film Watch: Blu-Ray Trailer For 'Avengers: Age Of Ultron' Plus 11 New Clips From The Film The 10 Best And 5 Worst Tom Cruise Performances The 10 Best And 5 Worst Tom Cruise Performances Watch: New Trailer For 'Mad Max: Fury Road' Blu-ray Release Explores Who Killed The World Watch: New Trailer For 'Mad Max: Fury Road' Blu-ray Release Explores Who Killed The World Just For Laughs: 'The Big Lebowski' Live Read With Michael Fassbender & Jennifer Lawrence Just For Laughs: 'The Big Lebowski' Live Read With Michael Fassbender & Jennifer Lawrence All The Songs In 'Paper Towns' Including Bon Iver, Wilco, Vampire Weekend, Bob Dylan, And More All The Songs In 'Paper Towns' Including Bon Iver, Wilco, Vampire Weekend, Bob Dylan, And More "A Living Hell": 'The Revenant' Is Reportedly $35 Million Over Budget, A Producer Exited The Movie, And More "A Living Hell": 'The Revenant' Is Reportedly $35 Million Over Budget, A Producer Exited The Movie, And More The 20 Best Documentaries Of 2015 So Far The 20 Best Documentaries Of 2015 So Far The 25 Best Animated Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 25 Best Animated Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 50 Best Films Of The Decade So Far The 50 Best Films Of The Decade So Far The 25 Best Horror Films Of The 21st Century So Far The 25 Best Horror Films Of The 21st Century So Far "It Was A Clusterfuck From Day One": 5 Things About Neill Blomkamp's Failed 'Halo' Movie "It Was A Clusterfuck From Day One": 5 Things About Neill Blomkamp's Failed 'Halo' Movie

'Killer Joe' Star Gina Gershon Says NC-17 Ratings Seem "Random"; Talks Changes Made To 'Bound' To Secure R-Rating

Photo of Kevin Jagernauth By Kevin Jagernauth | The Playlist March 15, 2012 at 2:45PM

Well, it's now official. After an appeal, the MPAA has weighed in and given William Friedkin's "Killer Joe" the dreaded NC-17 rating. And while this is unlikely to draw the celebrity and political support of the campaign Harvey Weinstein is putting behind the R-rated documentary "Bully," it's still a reminder of the MPAA's conservative viewpoint and the mysteriousness of the process by which they hand out ratings. And none of this is lost on "Killer Joe"'s star, Gina Gershon.
1
Killer Joe Emile Hirsch Matthew McConaughey Juno Temple Gina Gershon

Well, it's now official. After an appeal, the MPAA has weighed in and given William Friedkin's "Killer Joe" the dreaded NC-17 rating. And while this is unlikely to draw the celebrity and political support of the campaign Harvey Weinstein is putting behind the R-rated documentary "Bully," it's still a reminder of the MPAA's conservative viewpoint and the mysteriousness of the process by which they hand out ratings. And none of this is lost on "Killer Joe"'s star, Gina Gershon.

Playlister Cory Everett sat in with the actress and Emile Hirsch as they chatted with press at SXSW earlier this week, before the the MPAA made their decision on the appeal. And she was quite candid with her feelings on the ratings board. "The NC-17, it's so befuddling to me because there are so many movies that I've seen that are so uber-violent, you're 'If this is NC-17, why aren't those NC-17.' It feels so random to me," she said. "I dont' think it should be PG for sure, but it's a tricky thing. I just think parents should be able to decide what their kids are going to see, and it certainly isn't more violent than other movies that I've seen. I always wonder if [my character] were a guy, if it would've been an NC-17 -- like when he hits her, and there's that violence -- would it have been, 'Oh it's okay.' "

Citing "Saw," "Hostel" and "Casino" as films whose violence are far more explicit than anything in "Killer Joe," Gershon revealed that it's not the first time one of her films got under the skin of the MPAA. "[For] 'Bound' we had to change the love scene to make it an R. And the love scene that they didn't like was a really intense, beautiful love scene. And you didn't see any body parts, you didn't see anything, it was an intense [scene] between me and Jennifer [Tilly]. And they were like, 'Oh we can't have this.' And when we changed it to the other love scene, which was much more -- not violent, but it had a hardness to it -- they were like, 'Oh yeah this is fine.' I was like, 'I don't understand this,' " she said, adding, "[Paul] Verhoeven would tell a lot of stories about 'Basic Instinct,' how they kept saying, 'No no no' and one day they said 'Yes,' and he goes, 'I didn't change a thing.' "

Whatever the exact reasons for the rating, we'll never quite know. But "Killer Joe" is a pretty sizzling piece of work, so if it does manage to pop up at a screen near you, make the effort to go see it. But leave the kids at home, and you might not want to eat any fried chicken immediately before or after viewing...

This article is related to: Gina Gershon, Killer Joe, Emile Hirsch


The Playlist

The obsessives' guide to contemporary cinema via film discussion, news, reviews, features, nostalgia, movie music, soundtracks, DVDs and more.


E-Mail Updates