The Equalizer 3 Parents & Rating Guide

What should parents know before letting their kids watch The Equalizer 3?

by Mike Bedard
Image: Sony

Denzel Washington and director Antoine Fuqua are back in the saddle with the third (and potentially final) installment of The Equalizer franchise. Washington returns as Robert McCall, a former Marine and DIA operative, who’s made it his mission in life to protect innocents. While he brought his signature brand of vengeance to Boston in the first two films, The Equalizer 3 sees him go up against the mafia in a small Italian village. The one thing that’s the same from the first two films is that The Equalizer 3 is rated R for “strong bloody violence and some language.” Needless to say, you may want to leave the kids at home for this one.

Why Shouldn’t Children Watch The Equalizer 3?

The Equalizer 3 isn’t the type of action movie where bad guys get shot and then keel over without incident. There are intense sequences of bloody violence right from the start. The opening sequence sees a character walk through a compound where numerous men have already met grisly ends. And the movie doesn’t skimp on the gore. Another scene sees a man have his hand cut off, and later, the audience sees him carrying his disembodied hand in an ice bucket. Anyone who’s squeamish at the sight of blood may want to think twice.

The other main reason for The Equalizer 3‘s R rating is the use of profanity. Many naughty words are featured throughout the story, including “f***” and “s***.” There are also frequent references to drugs, which are a prominent component of the plot. Ultimately, it’s up to parents to decide what younger viewers can handle, but it’s probably not a good idea to let any kids younger than 17 watch The Equalizer 3 or the previous films in the franchise.

Younger viewers might do better with more recent PG-13 action excursions, like Transformers: Rise of the Beasts or Fast X. The Equalizer 3 may be stylish, but it’s best left for adults who can handle the gratuitous violence.

- This article was updated on September 7th, 2023

About The Author

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Mike Bedard has written tens upon thousands of articles online in all kinds of spaces. Some of his previous writing credits include Cracked, Ranker, and StudioBinder.