Man Backed for Watching R-Rated Movie on Flight That Left Child 'Crying'

The internet has backed a man who was watching an R-rated movie during a flight after a young child watched over his shoulder, leaving the parent furious.

In a post on Reddit's r/AmITheA**hole forum, Jonas, who is from Florida, shared the story under the handle u/rmovieplanethrowaway and it has received thousands of upvotes and over 700 comments.

In the post, the 19-year-old explained: "I was on a flight to visit my parents. I had a few movies downloaded on my phone, including the second Deadpool. I was watching it on my phone with headphones in, when the part where Deadpool gets ripped in half happens, and I can hear a (muffled) scream behind me. I take out my headphones and there's a little kid behind me, crying."

The 2018 Deadpool 2 movie starring Ryan Reynolds is R-rated, meaning that it is not suitable for unaccompanied children. The adult superhero movie holds warnings for strong language throughout, brief drug material, sexual content, and strong violence.

Deadpool poster and crying child
A picture of the official Deadpool movie poster, left, and a stock image of a child crying on board a flight, right. The internet has backed a man who was watching an r-rated movie on a flight despite the fact it left a child "crying." IMDB/Radist Getty Images

During the flight, the young child behind had positioned himself in such a way that he could watch the man's screen from the seat behind. But after the violent moment in the film, the child's mom was unhappy. "His mom got mad at me and yelled that I shouldn't be watching that kind of thing," said the Redditor: "But I wasn't aware anyone was watching me, and that kid would have had to force himself into that weird position to see my phone screen. So am I an a**hole?"

Jonas, who only wanted to be referred to by his first name, told Newsweek: "I'm not very confrontational so it kind of freaked me out, and I felt really bad at the same time since I probably gave that kid nightmares."

In a later update, the poster explained that the flight was during the day—leaving at 11 a.m. and landing at 5 p.m., and the child could not have been more than 6 years old.

Movie ratings are designed to give parents the tools they need to decide which films are appropriate for their family.

Assigned by the Motion Picture Association, an R-rating does not necessarily mean that children cannot watch the content, but the association says: "Under 17 requires accompanying parent or adult guardian" and "Contains some adult material. Parents are urged to learn more about the film before taking their young children with them."

The current rating system was introduced in 1968 when earlier censorship guidelines were replaced with a new parent-focused system. Previously, the Hays Code—introduced in 1922—rated movies based on whether they were deemed "moral" according to a list of rules. The new system was put in place to give viewers the tools to understand movie content without pre-judging what is right or wrong.

Movies were rated G, M, R, or X, with PG later replacing the M rating and NC-17 replacing X. By 1984, the new PG-13 rating was also introduced, not intended to link to a specific age but as a note of caution to parents to further look into content before viewing with their children.

The latest survey on the system was completed in July 2016, when 85 percent of adults said that they find the rating descriptions to be very or fairly useful.

While the parent on the flight was not able to vet the film before her child watched through the seats, the internet sided with the Redditor telling him that he did not do anything wrong.

"NTA," said one commenter: "She should've watched her own kid. She was happy he was occupied until it backfired and decided to shift the blame."

Another reply said: "The mom is in a public setting, it's her responsibility to watch her child. It's troubling that she didn't notice her kid was watching your movie."

"Random strangers on a flight can not, and should not, police what you watch," shared another reply.

"The reaction to the post kind of surprised me," said Jonas: "It is nowhere near as interesting as some of the other posts I've seen, but a s*** ton of people found it necessary to respond. With all the support I've received from it, I feel a lot better about this situation."