Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness is the latest Marvel movie to hit theatres, acting as a sequel to 2016's Doctor Strange and tangentially a follow up to 2021's Spider-Man: No Way Home and WandaVision on Disney Plus.
Note: minor spoilers for Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness
The big difference with the 28th movie in the MCU (Marvel Cinematic Universe) is that it's the studio's first attempt at horror. Sam Raimi (yes, that Sam Raimi who did the Tobey Maguire Spider-Man trilogy) takes charge as director of the sequel – fans of the Evil Dead franchise will recognise his style immediately. As the MCU is popular with all demographics, many parents will be wondering whether the movie is suitable for kids.
Let's explain the rating first: Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness has been given a PG-13 rating in the US and 12A in the UK. According to the BBFC (opens in new tab) that designates all ratings for the UK, the movie contains flashing/flicking lights, injury detail, violence, threat and horror. It's also worth noting that Doctor Strange 2 features more swearing than the average Marvel movie. While not excessive in any way shape or form, it is more noticeable than prior flicks.
Check out the official trailer below to get a feel for the film:
The ratings information for threat and horror reads as such: "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."
From my own personal experience, I would say a 12A rating is correct and parents should judge whether they think the movie is suitable depending on their child. If they scare easily and tend to have nightmares as a result, it might be worth skipping this one... or at least wait until the movie arrives on Disney Plus.
Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness stars Benedict Cumberbatch, Elizabeth Olsen, Benedict Wong, Rachel McAdams, Xochitl Gomez and Chiwetel Ejiofor. It premiered in theatres in the UK on May 5th and then began rolling out globally on May 6th, 2022.
Not sure what MCU films to watch in preparation for Doctor Strange 2? Here are the three essential Marvel movies you can watch on Disney Plus today.