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Why The Borderlands Movie Is Rated PG-13: A Parents Guide To The Controversial Rating

The video game movie gold rush continues. After projects like "Uncharted" and "The Super Mario Bros. Movie" blew everyone away at the box office, Lionsgate is trying to get in on the financial frenzy with "Borderlands." Based on the beloved first-person shooter games from Gearbox, the upcoming film has received a PG-13 rating, making it accessible for younger viewers. It received the teen-friendly score for "intense sequences of violence and action, language and some suggestive material." That rating is pretty much in line with most blockbuster fare that shows up in multiplexes these days, making "Borderlands" a solid bet for families eager for a relatively appropriate time at the movies. 

Take a look at the first "Borderlands" trailer that X, formerly known as Twitter, couldn't stop talking about, and you'll see that the action sequences are fairly mild, boasting little to no gore or blood. While it's up to individual parents to assess if "Borderlands" is appropriate for their kids, it's fair to say that the Eli Roth-directed picture isn't pushing any boundaries in terms of suggestive content. If your kids are okay with Marvel projects like "Guardians of the Galaxy" or "Thor: Love and Thunder," then the new video game pic will probably be a safe option. 

While parents might be pleased that "Borderlands" has a PG-13 rating, fans of the video game are notably disappointed. After all, the "Borderlands" games have consistently received M ratings from the ERSB (Entertainment Software Rating Board), which is the equivalent of the R-rating for video games.

Are fans overreacting to the Borderlands rating?

When production on "Borderlands" started, some were skeptical about certain creative decisions made by Lionsgate and director Eli Roth. Many hardcore fans of the game were particularly disappointed over casting choices, claiming that Cate Blanchett and Jamie Lee Curtis were too old to play Lilith and Dr. Patricia Tannis, respectively. While the film's trailer proves that these are solid, star power-oriented casting decisions, many were left disappointed by the footage's humor, and how the adaptation was trying to mimic the tone of the "Guardians of the Galaxy" franchise. 

With viewer expectations already low, the news that "Borderlands" is rated PG-13 is leaving fans scratching their heads. "'Borderlands' got a PG-13 rating, this movie is going to be so very awful guys," shared X user @MRIXRT. "The 'Borderlands' movie is rated PG-13 is just another nail in the metal infested coffin," wrote @SpIinterCal. It's not difficult to see why fans are disappointed. 

After all, the "Borderlands" games were successful largely because of their unhinged tone, which puts an emphasis on gratuitous violence. However, an R-rating would limit profits for Lionsgate, a problem for a studio that likely hopes to turn the film into a franchise. Ultimately, fans will just have to wait and see if "Borderlands" emerges as one of the worst video game adaptations of all time, or if it exceeds expectations. Anyone on social media knows that overreaction is common — especially when it comes to fan-favorite properties. 

"Borderlands" will hit theaters on August 9.