Is Strange World Scary for Kids? Everything Parents Need to Know

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Wondering if Strange World is scary for kids? This no-spoiler Strange World parent review will help you decide if it’s safe for your family. 

If you’ve been watching the trailers for Strange World and wondering what the heck this movie is about, you’re not alone. In fact, I saw a whole scene from the film at D23 Expo and came out with a few laughs but no more enlightened about the movie plot. I’m just gonna say, it’s probably better to go in that way. The poster and the trailer looks a little weird, but it all makes sense once you’re into the movie, and by the end you’ll be ready to turn around and watch it again.

I brought my 4-year-old as my +1 to the screening but I’ll be taking my other two kids to see it later this week. UPDATE: Here’s their kids review.

Overall Thoughts of ‘Strange World’

This is Indiana Jones meets Atlantis. The creators did a fantastic job world building and introducing us to new characters like Splat who don’t have a face, yet manage to emote. It is a story of multigenerational families and conflict that are simple enough for the youngest viewers to enjoy, yet an underlying powerful and moving message for older kids and adults to mull over. And boy I’ve been mulling over it a lot. But we won’t go into it in this review to avoid any spoilers. 

Diverse characters in Strange World Disney
© 2022 Disney. All Rights Reserved.

Gabrielle Union and Jake Gyllenhaal by the way do a fantastic job voicing Mrs. and Mr. Clade I love Union and could barely make out that Meridian was her, and I was trying. Not distracting at all (unlike Beyonce in The Lion King, I’m sorry Beehive). So many times throughout the movie I grinned from ear to ear thinking THAT is a mama. You recognize the look in her eye when she means business, as well as the love she has for her child. Not to mention she was giving me major Mrs. Incredible vibes sans the superhuman abilities.

The family bond was one of my most absolutely favorite parts of the movie. Seeing two parents ALIVE on an adventure with their kid was just *chefs kiss.* My love for the movie could be showing my bias though because we are an interracial family ourselves, so it was cool to see it portrayed in a Disney movie. Not as “a thing” just as a family. Which brings me to something I enjoyed about this movie. 

Diversity and Inclusion

It seems after 100 years of magic, Disney is finally catching on to the fact that diversity can be casually woven into movies without it needing to be “a thing.” Disney movies have always had an abundance of heart. They put extra thought into their animated movies. That’s why we love them so much. And they’ve performed leaps and bounds above other studios. But in the last decade or so I think some of that care has turned to careful, safe even. And where other studios have jumped head first into diversity and inclusivity, starring main characters from all different races, not because it’s a “cultural movie,”  just regular old entertainment. Meanwhile DreamWorks and Sony brought us Home, Over the Moon, Abominable, Vivo, Spider-Man Into the Spider-Verse and more. These bright and beautiful movies featuring main characters from 

Strange world parent review: Is Strange World Scary for kids?
Walt Disney Studios

diverse backgrounds just because. It’s refreshing to see Disney FINALLY getting there, in my opinion, for the very first time with their main cast. For the first time in a Disney Animated movie we see an interracial married couple, and they have a 16-year-old biracial son. Beyond that there’s a gay teen, a 3-legged dog, an Asian character, a grandfather in his 70s who is quite spunky and fit. None of these things are overemphasized or even addressed, simply present. 

Is ‘Strange World’ Scary for kids?

Is Strange World Scary for kids?
© 2022 Disney. All Rights Reserved.

You never know what you’re going to get, especially in a movie with strange alien-like creatures. If you’re taking your young kids to see Strange World there may be a few things to be aware of including suspenseful scenes where characters are being chased or attacked by creatures that might seem scary to young kids. There are a couple of startling moments–One even made my 4-year-old spill all of her popcorn. But it wasn’t anything to make her cry or creep her out for later just startling (and funny). Most of the creatures are toothless, and faceless which I think can make them less scary. Comparing this to something like Zootopia I’d say it’s less scary in those scary moments.

Sexual content in ‘Strange World

As far as sexual content for this movie goes, normally we might see a couple kiss at the end of the fairytale but in this movie a married couple kiss a handful of times. Their 16-year-old son Ethan is grossed out (I mean what kid isn’t?). Ethan also has a crush on one of his friends, I think his name is Diablo or Diez. His crush is mentioned a few times. Grandpa Jaeger also mentions courting his wife and how to “win someone over.” 

Final Thoughts on ‘Strange World’

Strange World scary for kids, diversity and gay character explained

Overall, it’s exciting to see the action through the film and how every character interacts with conflict differently. Characters are learning to embrace their strengths and faults but it’s understated, not bashed over the head. I do wish we could have learned more about Ethan and his interests. The movie sometimes gave A Goofy Movie vibes with a clingy father trying to get to know his son. We can see Ethan has a big heart and he wants to do something more with his life, and I wanted to know more about him and his backstory. His mother and grandfather separately ask him about his love interest, and while as a parent, that is something I’m curious about with my kids, there’s more to growing up than dating (or maybe I’m in denial since my oldest is just 12). And given that you don’t even really get to see Ethan with his friends for a majority of the movie, it started to feel a smidge out of place pacing wise. 

Still, my 4-year-old gives Strange World 5 stars. I give it a 3.75. I liked it a lot more than Encanto because it’s exciting and has a true climax, but this won’t get the same tiktok because of the lack of a boppin soundtrack. Even still, the score makes you feel like you’re watching a 80s adventure movie and it doesn’t disappoint. Did the movie blow my mind? A little. But perhaps that’s because I’ve stopped expecting them to. I’ll add another review with my kids’ opinions once they’ve had a chance to see it. 

Are you planning to watch Strange World

Strange World hits theaters November 23rd

Wondering how our review of Strange World might compare to yours? Here are some other movies we’ve reviewed:

If you like watching movies together as a family you’ll love our Family Movie Night Journal! Created by me and my oldest daughter Jayda that’s bringing a family tradition of movie watching and rating to families around the world.

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One Comment

  1. Oh my goodness…I got to watch a screening Monday night and I totally agree with everything you had to say. I loved seeing the family dynamics and I feel like they were true to life. Meridian is such a fun mom who isn’t afraid to be the authority when needed. I was a little perplexed by the word they found themselves in for a good portion of the movie but loved the resolution in the end. So many lines that I will be quoting for months to come. Thanks for sharing your opinion. Can’t wait to hear what the kids think about it!

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