PG-13 movies are often some of the most engaging and entertaining cinematic creations. The rating typically means that parental guidance is advised for children while watching these movies, as some material in these films is sensitive and could be inappropriate for younger audiences. However, the rating also allows makers to create a raw portrayal of the movie’s themes or simply include sexually graphic or violent sequences needed to convey the story’s emotion. Nonetheless, PG-13 movies are often an excellent watch for the entire family. If you are looking for PG-13 movies on HBO Max, we have taken the liberty to go ahead and sort out some of the best ones the platform offers. Let’s take a look, shall we?
12. King Kong (2005)
The monster film ‘King Kong‘ is directed by Peter Jackson and is the first 21st-century take on the titular legendary giant gorilla. The narrative revolves around an ambitious filmmaker who leads his crew to the mysterious Skull Island, where the group encounters Kong, a ferocious but misunderstood giant gorilla. With a strong critical reception, ‘King Kong’ roared at the box office, becoming one of the most successful films of 2005. The film’s period setting and an emotional overtone to the tropes of the monster genre weave magic on the viewers making ‘King Kong’ a modern classic.
11. Free Guy (2021)
The Shawn Levy directorial ‘Free Guy‘ stars Ryan Reynolds as Guy, a non-player character (NPC) in ‘Free City,’ a fictional video game immersed in a conspiracy. After he falls for Millie, Guy sets out to write his own story and tries to save the day. The action-comedy is a clean, charming family entertainer barring a few swear words and suggestive scenes here and there. Though the story is a tad predictable and relies on genre tropes and gimmicks to further itself, the film balances humor with action and features some charming performances that will make this film worth your time!
10. In the Heights (2021)
Based on Quiara Alegría Hudes and Lin-Manuel Miranda’s eponymous stage play, ‘In the Heights‘ is a musical drama movie directed by Jon M. Chu. It tells the tale of the residents of the Washington Heights neighborhood in New York City’s Upper Manhattan as they pursue their dreams in life. The film’s musical numbers will leave an instant impression on you, and the heartfelt stories of the characters will touch your hearts. Moreover, the movie’s direction and music have received acclaim, and the movie is one of the best stage-to-movie adaptations of recent years.
9. Warrior (2011)
‘Warrior‘ is a sports drama movie directed by Gavin O’Connor that stars Tom Hardy and Joel Edgerton in the lead roles. It follows Tommy Riordan Conlon and Brendan Conlon, two estranged brothers who come face-to-face in a mixed martial arts tournament. Forced to confront their pasts and overcome the hardships of their lives, the two brothers fight for glory in the ring. The movie features some real MMA stars and has top-notch fight sequences that will make viewers feel every gritty punch and kick. Thus, the violence justifies its PG-13 rating yet makes it all the more entertaining.
8. Death on the Nile (2022)
‘Death on the Nile‘ is a crime drama movie based on Agatha Christie’s seminal novel of the same name. It is directed by Kenneth Branagh and features a star-studded cast including the likes of Tom Bateman, Annette Bening, Branagh, Ali Fazal, Gal Gadot, Armie Hammer, and Rose Leslie. It is a sequel to Branagh’s 2017 mystery ‘Murder on the Orient Express‘ and the director’s second installment in the franchise based on the popular detective Hercule Poirot. Apart from a few sensitive themes and dark sequences, the film is a classic murder mystery that keeps viewers guessing until the end. Furthermore, fans of Christie’s works certainly wouldn’t want to skip ‘Death on the Nile.’
7. West Side Story (2021)
Director Steven Spielberg’s ‘West Side Story‘ is a romantic musical film that stars Ansel Elgort and Rachel Zegler in the lead roles. The movie is based on the evergreen 1957 stage musical of the same name. It follows Tony and Maria, members of opposing gangs who meet and fall in love; however, they must face several challenges due to their social standings before they can unite. The film’s music was composed by Leonard Bernstein with lyrics by the legendary Stephen Sondheim. An all-around entertainer that recreates one of the greatest love stories ever told, ‘West Side Story’ is worth checking out.
6. King Richard (2021)
‘King Richard‘ is a biographical sports drama film based on the life of Richard Williams. It stars Will Smith as Richard, who trains his daughters, Venus and Serena, to etch their names among the greatest tennis players of all time. The film, directed by Reinaldo Marcus Green, has received critical acclaim and highlights the struggles of the Williams family. A few sequences featuring sensitive subjective might have earned it a PG-13 rating, but the story of the Williamses will resonate and inspire viewers of all ages.
5. Crazy Rich Asians (2018)
The second film on this list by director Jon M. Chu, ‘Crazy Rich Asians‘ is a romantic comedy film based on Kevin Kwan’s best-selling novel of the same name. It follows Rachel Chu, a Chinese-American professor who travels to meet her boyfriend’s family in Singapore, only to learn about their wealthy background. As a result, she is forced to examine her relationship. The feel-good and warm comedy is one of Hollywood’s best examples of Asian representation. It beautifully captures the intricacies of Rachel and Nick’s relationship while highlighting Chinese culture.
4. The Batman (2022)
‘The Batman,’ directed by Matt Reeves, is a superhero movie based on the DC Comics character of the same name. It follows Bruce Wayne/Batman, who must stop the Riddler’s deadly game of chaos in Gotham City. The film comprises exhilarating visuals and spellbinding performances from Robert Pattinson, Zoë Kravitz, Paul Dano, Jeffrey Wright, Andy Serkis, and Colin Farrell. With violent action sequences and mature themes, the brooding superhero drama pushes the limits of the PG-13 rating, making it one of the most exciting picks on this list.
3. The Perks of Being a Wallflower (2012)
Written and directed by Stephen Chbosky, ‘The Perks of Being a Wallflower‘ is a drama film based on Chbosky’s own eponymous 2012 novel. It follows Charlie, a teenager who struggles to fit in among his peers during his freshman year in high school. He forms a close bond with a pen pal that eventually defines his experiences as a teenager. The movie stars Logan Lerman, Emma Watson, and Ezra Miller in the lead roles. The coming-of-age drama has received critical acclaim and treads a thin line that defines the requirement of the PG-13 rating when movies deal with mature themes despite featuring younger characters.
2. Ocean’s Eleven (2001)
‘Ocean’s Eleven’ is a heist comedy film directed by Steven Soderbergh and a remake of the 1960 film of the same name. It boasts an all-star cast comprising George Clooney, Brad Pitt, Matt Damon, Don Cheadle, Andy García, Bernie Mac, and Julia Roberts. The story centers around Danny Ocean and his talented crew, who formulate a plan to steal around $160 million from a casino owner tied to his past. The movie achieved critical acclaim with its charming performances, deft writing, slick camerawork, and compelling story. ‘Ocean’s Eleven’ is known for reinvigorating interest in the heist genre and is a popular pick for a leisure watch.
1. Inception (2010)
Director Christopher Nolan rarely makes a dull cinematic piece; therefore, his 2010 sci-fi movie ‘Inception‘ is an achievement on its own as it is considered among the director’s finest works. Starring Leonardo DiCaprio as Dom Cobb, the film follows a group of thieves and con artists on a mission to implant another person’s idea into a target’s subconscious. The outstanding premise is elevated by a complex and layered screenplay that deals with a plethora of themes and never loses touch with its characters’ humanity. With four Academy Awards to its name and an $836.8 million box office collection, the film is a blockbuster in every sense. For those reasons, it takes the top spot on this list!
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