Parents’ Guide: Is ‘Elvis’ Right for Your Teenagers?


This image released by Warner Bros. Pictures shows Austin Butler in a scene from “Elvis.” (Warner Bros. Pictures via Associated Press)

Estimated reading time: 4-5 minutes

TUPELO — The King is on the big screen. Not King Kong. Not the Burger King. And not LeBron. I’m talking about the king of rock and roll, Elvis Presley.

There “Elvis“The biopic is now in theaters and the movie is getting quite a bit of buzz. I’m not here to tell you if the movie is good or worth watching. I did that in my review. let you know what you can expect from “Elvis” in terms of content so you can make an informed decision if you think this movie is for you or your kids.

Again, I’m not here to tell you whether or not you should see the movie, or whether you should let your kids see the movie. I’m here to give content information so you can make your own decisions.

Here’s what you need to know about “Elvis.”


We all know the term “sex, drugs and rock ‘n’ roll”. All three are in the movie, but there’s more rock ‘n’ roll than anything else.

As for sex, there are references, but no actual nudity. There is a scene where a woman is in bed in her underwear and it is assumed that she and a man had just been or were about to be intimate.

Outside of this scene, the rest of the sexual content is either hinted at or hinted at and not shown. The sexual discussion is even veiled and not open. There are talks of infidelity and probably the most sexual moments come from women watching Elvis perform.

A few scenes show horny women while the singer performs and this can be uncomfortable for some and you should be aware of that. It’s probably the most sensual and “graphic” thing in the film.


There’s not a lot of language in “Elvis.” For the most part the curse is tamed, save for one F-word. many movies with the rating.

We talk a lot about racism, classism, depression and drugs. Thus, the curse is weak, but the difficult subjects come up regularly.


“Elvis” is not a violent movie. I don’t even really need the section here, but just have it to let you know that’s not where the movie gets its rating. There is fighting and a scene of racial segregation erupts in violence, but little is shown. Awareness of what is happening, however, can be unsettling.


“Elvis” is a depressing movie and there aren’t many highs in its two-and-a-half-plus hour runtime. The overall theme seems to be one of manipulation and gaslighting, and paints a very dark and sad picture.

It’s not a feel-good movie and it may have an effect on someone who may not be in a good position to handle all of this right now.

While I think the content, at face value, deserves a PG-13 rating, I think the overall tone and vibe of the film is more of an R rating. Real life can be messy and chaotic at times and unfortunately for the king of rock and roll, that seemed to be the case for much of his life.


“Elvis” is aimed at an older audience. I don’t think it needs an R rating, but it’s a perfect example of the song I’ve been singing for a long time – the rating system is broken and there should be something defining between PG-13 and R.

Obviously this movie is not for small children, but I think a lot of teenagers might be interested. I won’t tell you at what age you should allow your children to see it, only you can make that call. I will say, I think it’s for more mature teenagers who can handle the heavy narrative and separate film and life and not glamorize the difficult lifestyle that Elvis often led.

“Elvis” is officially rated PG-13 for substance abuse, foul language, suggestive material, and smoking.

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John grew up around movies and annoys his friends and family with his movie facts and knowledge. He also has a passion for sports and pretty much all things awesome, and those just happen to be the three things he writes about.

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