Special Report

Highest-Grossing R-Rated Movies of All Time

Source: Courtesy of Warner Bros.

5. Joker (2019)
> Domestic ticket sales, inflation-adjusted: $382,690,725
> Genre: Thriller/Suspense
> Director: Todd Phillips

“Joker,” about how the arch enemy of Batman came to be, depicts the title character with a chilling realism, which won Joaquin Phoenix an Oscar. The film can also be viewed as a look at how society handles those with mental illness.

Source: Courtesy of Twentieth Century Fox

4. Deadpool (2016)
> Domestic ticket sales, inflation-adjusted: $384,896,922
> Genre: Action / superhero
> Director: Tim Miller

“Deadpool” puts the cheekiness of Ryan Reynolds to good use as a superhero who breaches the fourth wall and addresses the audience about dealing with his dilemma. He’s a man gifted with extraordinary powers but wears a superhero get-up because he was disfigured during an experimental treatment for cancer.

Source: Courtesy of DreamWorks Distribution

3. Saving Private Ryan (1998)
> Domestic ticket sales, inflation-adjusted: $419,118,848
> Genre: Drama / Historical Fiction
> Director: Steven Spielberg

Loosely based on the story of the Niland brothers, two of whom who perished during World War II, “Saving Private Ryan” is about an American patrol tasked with finding a paratrooper behind enemy lines whose brothers have all been killed in combat. Among the five Oscars won by the film were Best Director for Steven Spielberg and Best Cinematography for Janusz Kamiński, whose filming of the D-Day landings was so realistic that it upset World War II veterans watching the movie.

Source: Courtesy of Warner Bros.

2. The Matrix Reloaded (2003)
> Domestic ticket sales, inflation-adjusted: $428,167,052
> Genre: Science Fiction
> Director: Lana Wachowski and Lilly Wachowski

The second of two of the Wachowski-helmed Matrix films repartnered Keanu Reeves, Laurence Fishburne, and Carrie-Anne Moss in this dazzling film that combines action and mind-bending special effects.

Source: Courtesy of Newmarket Films

1. The Passion of the Christ (2004)
> Domestic ticket sales, inflation-adjusted: $547,493,401
> Genre: Drama
> Director: Mel Gibson

Two years before a DUI-fueled anti-Semitic rant almost scuttled his career, Mel Gibson directed this graphic and upsetting movie about the last hours of Jesus Christ (Jim Cavievel). Some critics were appalled, calling it a “primitive and pornographic bloodbath.” It resonated more with audiences and is the most successful of all R-rated movies.

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