Planning on watching Doctor Strange In The Multiverse Of Madness with your kids? Here's the age rating and information about what you can expect to see in the film.
Doctor Strange In The Multiverse Of Madness
Rated 12A for moderate horror, violence, threat, injury detail
Doctor Strange In The Multiverse Of Madness is a fantasy horror adventure in which a sorcerer comes to the aid of a young woman who can traverse different universes and is being hunted for her power.
A large wound is seen in a man's leg, and there is occasional sight of blood and cuts to faces. Occasional close ups on a dead body show some stages of decomposition.
threat and horror
Scenes of horror include demonic beings attacking people; a decomposing corpse being reanimated; people being burned by magical powers, leaving charred remains; and multiple 'jump scares'. There are also frequent scenes of threat, in which people are pursued by demonic entities and monsters, or threatened with magical torture.
Sequences include superhuman beings battling with fantastical powers, as well as use of weapons and fistfights. Stronger moments include a person being impaled, magical powers devastating a man's head, and the implication someone is cut in half. Fantastical creatures are attacked using different magical powers, resulting in brief gory injuries.
This work contains flashing images which may affect viewers who are susceptible to photosensitive epilepsy.
There is use of mild bad language ('shit', 'crap', 'ass') and a partial use of 'son of a bitch'. Milder terms include 'God', 'hell', 'butt' and 'damn'. There is also occasional rude humour, and characters dealing with grief.
Why is Doctor Strange In The Multiverse Of Madness classified 12A?
(This section may include spoilers for the film)
Brought to you by renowned director Sam Raimi, Doctor Strange In The Multiverse of Madness is the latest instalment of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and draws on Raimi’s experience helming superhero films (e.g. the Spider-Man trilogy) and his origins in the horror genre (e.g. The Evil Dead trilogy, Drag Me To Hell). It follows Doctor Stephen Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) as he traverses different universes while being pursued by the Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth Olsen), using the evil Darkhold to empower her dark magic.
Our guidelines on violence at 12A state: “there should be no emphasis on injuries or blood, but occasional gory moments may be permitted if justified by the context.” Similarly, for threat and horror: “there may be moderate physical and psychological threat and horror sequences. Although some scenes may be disturbing, the overall tone should not be. Horror sequences should not be frequent or sustained.”
The film contains some notable moments of horror, including supernatural, zombie-like creatures, jump scares, and demonic entities, as well as impressionistically impactful but visually discreet moments of violence. The action largely takes place in alternate dimensions and universes, some of which resemble dreamscapes in which the laws of our world do not apply. Therefore, the surrealism of the multiverse and the fantastical nature of the horror, violence and threat, including the superhuman nature of many of the established characters, means the film is best placed at 12A.
What does our research tell us?
All our classification decisions are informed by our guidelines, which are based on widespread consultation and research. We work closely with young people, child psychologists and charities to ensure that all of our decisions reflect societal standards and norms.
Our most recent guidelines research in 2019 showed that people, including parents and teenagers, are most concerned with depictions of threat and violence that occurs in relatable ‘real-world’ contexts and are more accepting of violence that appears in fantasy action films. Respondents said that violence in films such as Logan, Jason Bourne and Deadpool were easy to dismiss on the whole as being firmly within the action fantasy genre with no real links to real life.
‘Gateway to horror’ films to explore together
Doctor Strange In The Multiverse Of Madness draws on Sam Raimi’s skill as a blockbuster and horror filmmaker, incorporating lots of horror tropes - from monsters, witches and zombies, to tense chases in dark hallways, jump scares, and dark humour.
For some younger audiences - like passing through a multiversal gateway - this might be their first foray into the horror genre, so if you're looking for other films, rated PG or 12, to help explore further, read our list below.
Contains mild comic horror and violence, frightening sequences and innuendo
Paranorman is an animated comedy drama about a young boy called Norman who has the ability to see and communicate with dead people.
Contains mild threat and scary scenes and one use of mild language
Coraline is a children’s stop-motion animated film, based on a Neil Gaiman book of the same name.
Contains mild threat, scary scenes and one use of mild language
Frankenweenie is an animated film in which a young boy with a passion for horror movies brings his pet dog back to life.
frequent scary scenes
Goosebumps is an adventure horror about a boy who has to save his town when hundreds of monsters are unleashed from his neighbour's book collection.
mild threat, scary scenes, language
The Witches is a comic supernatural fantasy, based on the Roald Dahl novel, and in which a young boy encounters a coven of witches.
moderate threat, violence, scary scenes
Miss Peregrine’s Home For Peculiar Children is an adventure fantasy, adapted from the novel by Ransom Riggs, about a home for children with special abilities.
Contains intense supernatural threat and horror
The Woman In Black is a horror drama, based on the ghost story by Susan Hill, in which a young lawyer travels to a remote rural village where he discovers a vengeful ghost responsible for the deaths of local children.
moderate violence, fantasy horror
Gremlins is a fantasy horror comedy in which an unusual pet that a man has bought for his son spawns multiple evil Gremlins that escape and terrorise their town.
Contains moderate horror
The Others is a gothic horror film about a woman, and her two photosensitive children, who begin to suspect that their large deserted mansion may be haunted.
injury detail, threat
When an insatiable great white shark terrorises Amity Island, a police chief, an oceanographer and a grizzled shark hunter seek to destroy the beast.
Contains moderate violence and horror and one use of strong language
Warm Bodies is a fantasy horror romantic comedy set in a post-apocalyptic world where zombies prey on humans. A young zombie falls in love with the girlfriend of one of his victims and their relationship starts to transform him.
moderate threat, gore, infrequent strong language
Tremors is a 1990 comedy sci-fi horror in which the inhabitants of an isolated town in the desert have to defend themselves against giant worm-like monsters.
moderate violence, brief bloody moments
Fantastic Four is a sci-fi action fantasy about four scientists who gain superhuman powers after an experiment goes wrong.
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