R-Rated Movies

28 Primary Sources

Jan 1973

Hartman Rector, Jr. gives a list of "barriers" for youth to adopt, including to "not attend R- or X-rated movies."

Jan 1973

Robert L. Simpson says X- and R-rated movies should be "automatically eliminated" as LDS viewing options.

Sep 9, 1980

Spencer W. Kimball warns BYU students against R- and X- rated movies.

Apr 1981

Kieth W. Merrill explains why in 1981 movie ratings are not reliable (except for X-ratings, now NC-17).

Apr 1986

President Ezra Taft Benson counsels the young men to not see R-rated movies or vulgar videos.

Sep 1990

Joseph Walker warns against justifying watching R-rated movies, encourages 13th Article of Faith as a guideline, regardless of rating.

Oct 1993

Joe J. Christensen, referencing R-rated movies, says to "Remember that anything that is not good for children is rarely good for adults."

Jan 1995

H. Burke Peterson says R-rated and many PG-13 movies are "produced by satanic influences," and that our standards should not be dictated by the rating system.

Nov 1996

Joe J. Christensen counsels against watching R-rated movies, citing Gordon B. Hinckley's emphasis to "be clean."

Jul 1998

Cree-L Kofford says LDS young people should not watch R-rated movies because the prophet (Ezra Taft Benson) said so.

Feb 2002

The New Era publishes a Mormonad depicting a cockroach in ice-cream, relating it to what kind of movies or music you participate in.

May 15, 2004

Orson Scott Card explains his rationale that there is no commandment against R-rated films.

Jul 22, 2004

Harvard Study finds significant increases in violence, sex, and profanity in movies between 1992 and 2003.


Ron Leone & Nicole Houle conclude from a 2006 study of "ratings creep" found a significant increases in both sexual and violent content in PG-13 movies from 2000 to 2003.


The Church counsels "not to attend, view, or participate in anything that is vulgar, immoral, violent, or pornographic in any way."


Journal of Children and Media publishes study of a 2011 quantitative analysis that shows "ratings creep" through a significant increases in violent content in PG-13 movies from 1988 to 2006.

Sep 17, 2013

Lynn G. Robbins discusses movie ratings, concludes the Holy Ghost should guide what movies we watch.


The Rating Rules document provided by the MPA outlines the makeup of the board for CARA.


CARA outlines the criteria for rating a movie G, PG, PG-13, R, or NC-17.


CARA explains how the movie rating system is "constantly evolving."


The Television Ratings Guide segment on TV-MA rating and how it is modeled off of movie ratings.


The "Classification and Rating Rules" document of the MPA outlines that anything made by an MPA member must be rated to be distributed.


The Classification and Rating Rules document of the MPA details that movies may include unrated material like deleted scenes, interviews, commentary, etc.


The TV Parental Guidelines detail how ratings are applied on an episode-by-episode basis.


CARA infographic showing how the Film Rating System has changed over the years.

Oct 2022

Most recent (2022) For the Strength of Youth Pamphlet advises seeking entertainment that uplifts, inspires, and invites the Spirit.

Oct 2022

The 2022 For the Strength of Youth pamphlet counsels against pornography in the same section it provides counsel on media.

Oct 2022

The 2022 version of the For the Strength of Youth pamphlet explains that making good choices improves your ability to feel the spirit.