Disney’s live-action Mulan gets down to business with PG-13 rating

Disney's MULANMulan (Yifei Liu)Photo: Film Frame© 2019 Disney Enterprises, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Disney's MULANMulan (Yifei Liu)Photo: Film Frame© 2019 Disney Enterprises, Inc. All Rights Reserved. /

Disney’s Mulan is the studio’s first live-action adaptation of an animated classic to receive a PG-13 rating due to “sequences of violence.”

Judging by its action-packed trailer alone, Disney’s Mulan is poised to become the studio’s best live-action adaptation of an animated classic yet — and that’s not to mention that it’s the first of the group to receive a PG-13 rating, an uncommon occurrence when most of Disney’s live-action remakes have been rated G.

The animated Mulan was also rated G, but if you’ve been watching the trailers for the upcoming release, you’ll know these are two very different films. While both center around a young woman going off to war in her father’s place, the 1998 movie was full of musical numbers and comedic commentary from Eddie Murphy’s Mushu. As both the music and comic-relief characters have been done away with for the live-action rendition of this story, it makes sense it would take on a more serious tone. And given the subject matter it’s dealing with, it probably should feel more serious.

As for Disney’s reasoning behind giving Mulan a PG-13 rating, the studio has explained there are “sequences of violence” throughout the film that aren’t suitable for a younger audience. The recent trailers have shown bits and pieces of the film’s fight sequences, and they do look intense in the best possible way.

The villains in this film also seem more prominent than the ones in the animated classic, with Bori Khan and his witch companion,  Xian Lang, appearing far more often than Shan Yu ever did. Both of them look like dangerous opponents, so that could be an additional reason for tacking on a more mature rating.

Whatever its rating, this movie looks like an action-packed adventure that tackles some serious issues throughout — and we’ll be running to theaters to see it next month.

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Mulan hits theaters on March 27, 2020. Are you excited to see this live-action rendition of the story?