Five Nights at Freddy’s age rating: 3 reasons why the horror movie is not for kids

Five Nights at Freddy's
Five Nights at Freddy's /

Based on the popular video game of the same name, the new movie Five Nights at Freddy’s is one of the most highly-anticipated new releases this season. But there has been some confusion around the Five Nights at Freddy’s age rating, likely because of the film’s setting and characters.

Earlier this year, the Motion Picture Association revealed the Five Night’s at Freddy’s  age rating to be PG-13 because of “strong violent content, bloody images, and language”. Some gamers were surprised that the film did not get an R rating, and so the PG-13 rating is a significant clue that the film will be somewhat less violent than the game (the game is rated “Mature” for players age 17 and older). But, the downgrade from R to PG-13 does not mean that Five Nights at Freddy’s is now suitable for kids 12 and under.

3 things to know about the Five Nights at Freddy’s age rating

1. Premise of Five Nights at Freddy’s

One of the reasons some people may be confused about whether this is a true horror movie is because the main villains are animatronics from a family pizza restaurant called Freddy’s. Meant to look like creepy, broken, robotic stuffed animals and children’s toys, the animatronics come to life in the restaurant when they are possessed by the spirits of children — and yes, they are murderous.

2. Intense horror-movie elements

The story follows young man named Mike who is desperate for a job so that he can continue to provide for his younger sister, Abby (who we also see in the trailer). But when Mike takes the overnight security job at the abandoned Freddy’s restaurant, he quickly learns about the murderous, supernatural robots. Expect to see frightening jump scares, adults and children in perilous situations, and psychological terror as the human characters fight for their survival.

3. Use of violent imagery

The biggest reason for the Five Nights at Freddy’s age rating is the film’s use of violence to set high stakes for the human characters. The animatronic villains torture their victims before killing them, and you can expect to see imagery of blades, knives, blood, and what looks like a robotic torture device (as shown in the latest trailer), among other violent devices and situations.

Watch the latest trailer for Five Nights at Freddy’s

Watch the trailer to get a better understanding of what types of jump scares and violence you can expect to find throughout the film.

Five Nights at Freddy’s premieres at theaters nationwide on Friday, Oct. 27, just in time for Halloween. If you’d rather have a horror movie watch party at home, the film will also be released on Peacock on the same day.

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