Madison Vanderberg
August 06, 2018 2:17 pm

Bo Burnham’s directorial debut Eighth Grade is a buzzy new summer movie about—well, eighth grade—and everyone is talking about its authentic, intimate, and deeply empathetic look at one of the most painful and confusing eras in any teenager’s life. Eighth Grade tells the story of 13-year-old Kayla during her last weeks in middle school as she survives a cool kid pool party, talks to her crush, and bonds with a nice older girl. It’s sweet, it hurts, and is a rare peek inside the no-man’s land that is the gap between childhood and high school. However, actual eighth graders aren’t able to see the film because of its R rating.

The MPAA gave the film an R rating because of the F-word, and because of the severe rating, teens can’t see the film. To combat this, the studio is holding free screenings on August 8th, 2018, and will not be enforcing the rating.

“If you’ve been through 8th grade, Eighth Grade is for you,” A24 said in a statement (via Mashable).

Rotten Tomatoes even suggested that parents ignore the R rating and take their kids to see the film anyway. Other than the few errant F-bombs, the film includes a discussion about sending nude photos and a deeply relatable conversation about blow jobs. In short, it’s nothing a real-life eighth grader hasn’t already been exposed to.

For the IRL middle schoolers who go out on August 8th to see the film, director Burnham has a message for you.

"I hope anybody watching it feels something," he told HelloGiggles. "Not necessarily taking anything away, but just seeing themselves in these characters and feeling something."

Head here to find a free Eighth Grade screening near you.

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