The Iron Claw

NZ release: 25 January 2024

Violence, offensive language, drug use, sex scenes, and suicide Rated on: 05 January 2024

The Iron Claw

What’s it about?

Based on the true story of the Von Erich brothers, who make history in the intensely competitive world of professional wrestling under the guidance of their domineering father and coach, Fritz Von Erich. The film takes place in the 1980s, focusing on their careers, relationships, triumphs and tragedies.

The facts

  • Directed by Sean Durkin
  • Starring Zac Efron and Jeremy Allen White
  • English language
  • Runtime: 132 minutes

Why did it get this rating?


The film includes two impactful suicides. One character consumes some unidentified drugs. Another character shoots themselves off-screen. These scenes may be challenging to watch for people who have experienced or know someone who struggles with their mental health.


Characters are often seen wrestling, we see punching, kicking, choking, and acrobatic manoeuvres. Although the violence is staged, there are times when those involved suffer injuries.

The strongest violent scenes are when a character performs a move where they dig their fingers into their opponent’s forehead so hard that blood is shown. In one scene, a character is choked until they are nearly unconscious. This scene can be shocking for some viewers.

A character forces their sons to compete against each other and while there are no depictions of physical abuse it’s clear that the brothers are fearful of their domineering father.

Drug use

Brief scenes where drugs are seen being used. A character snorts an unidentified white powder while another character crushes and snorts some white pills in another scene. A character also injects an unidentified liquid.

Sex scenes

A character masturbates in the shower - no explicit nudity is shown. Two characters have clothed sex in a truck. Sex is implied, we see one of them sit on the other’s lap and adjusting their clothing.

Offensive language

There is occasional use of highly offensive and coarse language which is used to emphasise frustration.


  • Free call or text 1737 any time for support from a trained counsellor
  • Lifeline

Further information

Why are ratings and content warnings important for me and my whānau?

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