Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Why Is The Tetris Movie Rated R?

Since the 1980s, "Tetris" players have been stacking differently shaped falling blocks into completed lines that disappear to prevent the pile from reaching the top of the screen. The addictive puzzle-based endeavor has a much simpler concept than most popular titles and features no violence, nudity, or harsh language. But why does the movie about the game have an R rating?

Fans thinking that the film is on par with "The Super Mario Bros. Movie" or the "Sonic the Hedgehog" franchise should reset their expectations. Unfortunately, there isn't enough of a narrative within the "Tetris" franchise to turn the game itself into a profitable motion picture, but the way it made it into the hands of gamers around the world is another story entirely. 

The Apple TV+ feature follows the efforts of Henk Rogers (Taron Egerton) and "Tetris" creator Alexey Pajitnov (Nikita Efremov) to secure global handheld rights from the Soviet Union, which was about to implode during the Cold War. The real-life ordeal, surprisingly enough, plays out like a spy thriller, and while the game is rated for everyone, the flick has a noticeable amount of coarse language, harsh profanity, and sexual expletives with some violence witnessed throughout its 2-hour runtime, making it a less than ideal candidate for a family movie night.

Even though the "Tetris" cinematic origin isn't suited for viewers of all ages, one of the main players involved says that the fascinating story in the feature film was based on actual events — or at least most of it was.

The Tertris story was modded for audiences

The ending of "Tetris" features events that might leave some viewers wondering if they had actually taken place so that people could play the popular puzzle game on a global scale. But many would be hard-pressed to find any major motion picture based on real-life events that didn't change a few things for the sake of the plot or added excitement, which seems to be the case with Apple's R-rated video game flick.

Many may not realize that Henk Rogers and Alexey Pajitnov were involved in the making of the film, and both were shown the script early on. But while they went through several versions of the screenplay, some changes they suggested didn't make the final draft. "It's a Hollywood script, a movie. It's not about history, so a lot of [what's in the movie] never happened," Rogers said in an interview with Canary Media. "They tried their best to accept our changes when they had to do with authenticity. But when it started getting into [creative flourishes like] the car chase and all that, it was like 'OK, now it's all them.' We couldn't change anything."

Although the dramatic reenactment took some liberties and didn't necessarily tell the whole "Tetris" story, the movie does offer some intriguing insight into one of the most iconic games ever made, making it a worthwhile title to experience, even if it isn't rated E for Everyone.