How to Sneak Into an R Rated Movie

Seven Methods:Movie Switch MethodAdult Purchase MethodNot Paying MethodAutomatic Box Office MethodConcession Rush MethodBathroom Switching MethodParent Method

There's a new hit movie in town, and you really want to see it. Unfortunately, it's rated R, and you're underage. You have no adult to take you, but you want to see it. Trent Miller is not a good name to present if caught. There is only one option left, and that is to sneak in. And yes, it can be extremely scary.


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    Look the part. Dress like you would if you were the right age to see the movie. (Girls, don't overdo it.) Don't wear high school logos on clothes (college and university logos are great, though - if you look like a college student, people automatically assume you're at least 18). Guys - if you can grow a little facial hair, don't shave two days before the movie so you look older. Also, try to lower your voice to an older-sounding tone.
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    Practice and prepare yourself. Figure out what you're doing ahead of time. Practice your lines at home so you're comfortable saying them. For example, if you look over 17, pick a fake birthday ahead of time. The easiest way to catch someone lying about their age is by asking them about their birthday. If you stutter trying to think of a valid birthday, they won't let you in. If you look like you're 18, say your birthday was today and you left your ID at home.
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    Go with others. If you can, go with friends that are over 17. It makes it less obvious that you're under 17. Going with a friend might make it a bit less nerve racking if it is your first time sneaking in, and if you do get caught you're not alone.
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    Figure out your escape plan. If you get caught sneaking in, don't panic! Make an excuse such as, "Oh, my parents are in there, I just had to go to the bathroom". Sound realistic when you do. If you get caught doing the movie switching method, a good excuse is "Oh, sorry! I guess I got the wrong entrance." You might want to look around while saying it to make it more realistic. Never run away if you get caught. That will not only anger whoever it is that chases you down, but also draws even more attention...possibly an ill-mannered manager. While making an excuse can save you from being caught, running immediately makes you look guilty and will have you kicked out of the theater.

Method 1
Movie Switch Method

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    Go up to the ticket stand and purchase a ticket for a G, PG or PG-13 movie. Pay and thank them.
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    Give the ticket to the ticket taker like you would if you were seeing the movie you bought the ticket for.
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    Next comes the most difficult part, going in. Walk by the ticket taker and blend into/follow a crowd of people so as to not be noticed. However, instead of going to the movie you bought a ticket for, go into the theatre that is playing the R-rated movie.

Method 2
Adult Purchase Method

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    Find a good adult. Look around the theatre and find an adult in line or one that seems not to be doing anything much.
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    Ask them if they could buy your ticket for you. If they say no at first, be willing to pay them some money; a good amount is around $5 plus the cost of ticket.
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    If they still refuse, find another adult and try again.

Method 3
Not Paying Method

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    Get an older sibling or friend to buy a ticket and go inside the theatre.
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    There is usually an exit near the movie theater (not inside the theater) that does not have a handle on the outside but is used to exit instead of having to go through the lobby. Have your person open the door from the inside and let you in. If there are people around before you go in, smoke or talk on the phone, acting like you had only left for a brief moment. It's good to carry an old ticket from a previous movie you saw so that if a bystander questions you, you can just flash them the ticket and say you just went out for a smoke/call.

Method 4
Automatic Box Office Method

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    If you don't have a credit card you can usually get a prepaid one at stores like Walgreens, K-Mart, etc.
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    If your movie theatre has an automatic box office, use it! Walk up and pay for the R-rated movie using your prepaid card. This saves you having to fake it in front of a real person when buying your ticket. Keep in mind all ticket machines print on special paper and this could draw more attention to yourself.

Method 5
Concession Rush Method

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    Buy your ticket.
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    Go to the concession stand and buy your popcorn, drinks, etc.
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    When sneaking into the theatre with whatever you got at the concession stand, try rushing in so it will seem more like you were already watching and want to get back to see the rest of the movie.

Method 6
Bathroom Switching Method

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    Buy a ticket for a G, PG, PG-13 movie.
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    Go into that theater for a couple of minutes, just as if you are actually going to see that movie.
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    Go to the bathroom, and sneak into the R-rated movie theater "on your way back". You'll probably do better if the employees are punching tickets/talking to someone else and aren't looking.

Method 7
Parent Method

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    If your parent doesn't mind you going to an R-rated movie, but just doesn't want to see the movie, ask them to take you there.
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    Have your parent buy a ticket for you.
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    Take the ticket from your parent and enjoy your movie. Some movie theaters will let you buy an R rated movie ticket if your parent is there, even if your parent doesn't buy one. Do keep in mind that certain theatres require the parent to watch it with you.


  • In all honesty, some movie theatre employees, who usually make minimum wage, don't care if you're old enough or not.
  • Remember to act natural and calm when sneaking in. If you are tense and nervous, the ticket-checker might get suspicious and will probably check your ticket.
  • Your best bet is the movie switching method.
  • Keep in mind that if you are a bit tall for your age and are within about two years of being 17 (ex. 15 or 16), the ticket people will probably think that you are 17, and will not be suspicious.
  • The worst that can happen is getting booted for the night. Chances are, you won't get caught.
  • Don't do anything to raise a red flag. This might include being asked for an ID and not presenting one, coming with large groups of teenagers, or buying tickets to a young kids movie. As soon as one staff person gets suspicious they can usually alert the other staff quickly.
  • If you're shorter, go with taller friends and remember to dress the part. Heels are unnecessary but converse or flats are perfect! Go the hipster look and remember that 2-4 friends (includes you) are best (you'll seem like dorm roomies!).
  • Don't be all fake when you walk in and try to impersonate an older person, try your best but don't go over the top.
  • Try to sit towards the back where you are less obvious, the right side is perfect. Sit quietly and keep to yourself!
  • There is (currently) no law requiring movie theatres to enforce the ratings system in the United States, however in order for movie theaters to show the movies they have signed legal agreements with the film companies to enforce the Rated R Policies.
  • Be courteous. Keep quiet during the show. Remember that other people have paid to see this movie and do not want to hear a group of kids ruining it. Generally, the only times that kids are kicked out of an R-Rated film is if they are talking/yelling/being-obnoxious during the showing.
  • Bring a light jacket or hat to put on if someone appears to be looking for you.
  • If you can't follow this article, you can just wait for the movie to come out on DVD or watch movies online.
  • Some movie theaters require a ticket check outside of the theater, which will be more difficult to get in.
  • Pretend that you're on the phone and talk about what adults would talk about, e.g. "I had to work half-day at the office yesterday since it was a Saturday." That way, the person serving you will actually unwillingly eavesdrop and wouldn't ask you for your ID because they think you must be at least 21 and it'd be rude if they cut you off while you're talking on the phone.
  • Wait until you're 17 to see a movie that the MPAA has placed an age restriction on, because it is there for a reason. There is content in the film that the members of the MPAA agree are inappropriate for someone of your age, and it just puts way more of a hassle on the theater, as well as yourself, when they have to catch and kick you out. See movies that have been deemed appropriate for your age, and when you turn 17, you're perfectly fine to see any film of any rating. Just be patient.


  • If you go with friends make sure that you bring friends that won't try to get you kicked out (i.e., leave the obnoxious, loud friends at home).
  • Be aware of security; some theaters have security only in films that are rated R to prevent minors under 17 from viewing the film without a parent. When you see them, it's recommended to get a ticket refund because the security might ask you and your friends for ID's once they know you're 16 or under.
  • Do this at your own risk.
  • Make sure you really want to do this. You don't want to do something that will disturb your conscience, and it can be considered theft of services even if you purchase a ticket for a different movie.
  • It's a possibility you'll be banned from the movie theater.
  • Keep in mind that many people are aware that teens have a tendency to break rules and might keep a close eye on teens if they look suspicious.
  • If you are caught trying to sneak in you will probably get in trouble and your parents may be called.
  • Some theaters (usually the nicer, newer ones) are much stricter than other theaters (which may be not as new and nice). Some theaters check ticket stubs and ID's as well. If they ask for an ID, you will most likely not have a way around it (even if you already got someone over 17 to buy your ticket).
  • It could be risky, so caution is needed.
  • Bear in mind that if you get found out, the person who served you could get into trouble or even fired.
  • If you're going to do the Non-Paying Method, get your sibling to enter the theater and open the door for you. But you must ask him or her to leave, because if you buy only one ticket, only one person can see the film.
  • This could be scary for you so look at the content. There is a reason that it is rated R.

Article Info

Categories: Cinemas