Of course, if you have young ones at home, you don't want to get too scary. For Friday Faves this week, we did a poll of some of our favorite movie aficionado friends, added a few of our own, and came up with a great list of movies for Halloween that has choices for everyone. (All of them are pretty family friendly, depending on the ages of your family members!) The nice thing is that on Amazon you can often rent them or purchase them!
- It's the Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown! You can't go wrong with this oldie but goodie! This is the beginning of all of the Charlie Brown heartwarming holiday movies. I love them!
- Halloween Town is one of the first ones suggested for kids by so many people! It has done extremely well for a made for TV movie. My grown girls love it. It has some monsters that could be considered a little bit creepy to tiny kids I think. It is a great chance to see the late and great Debbie Reynolds in action.
- Hocus Pocus -I have to make a correction here. I originally said that this was a made for TV movie that became really popular! But, it wasn't. It was first released in theaters in the summer time and it did not do well. But, once it started being released on the Disney Channel at Halloween time, is has be come a cult classic! This one is also just scary enough that you may want to allow grade schoolers to see it, but not your super little ones. I am just being cautious here. Bette Midler and a couple of other well known actors make this movie a lot of fun!
- Hotel Transylvania is one I haven't seen but was suggested by a friend and it also has plenty of great reviews. Just the movie cover alone looks super cute and fun!
- I have to confess that when my older kids were little and Nightmare Before Christmas came out, I wouldn't let them see it. It seemed sacrilege to me to mix Christmas with Halloween! But, I must eat my words and tell you that I have seen it and I was wrong! What a great movie and a great way to celebrate Halloween and kick off the entry into the Christmas season! Sorry older kids. You may watch it now. (Don't worry, I still love Thanksgiving. But let's face it, you do have to start thinking about Christmas now.) Oh, and don't forget another great Tim Burton movie for Halloween, The Corpse Bride!
- The Addams Family is a great one for kids! It isn't very scary, but it is creepy in a funny way. Does that make sense? We have all enjoyed that one.
Awesome Movies for Mid-grades and Up:
- Harry Potter Movies are a favorite around here. I know some people who haven't allowed their kids watch them. So, that is why I put them in this category. Honestly, depending on your child, they can probably handle them at a younger age. These are such magical, take you to another place type movies that you mourn when they are over. Sometimes I just have to plan a marathon viewing of them all. (I've already read the books multiple times.) Some of them are better than others, but overall, we still adore them.
- Beetlejuice is a movie I haven't seen. I don't know why because I generally like Michael Keaton in most things. It comes very highly recommended and is a comedy but with a scare factor as well. I need to check this one out.
- The Goosebumps TV show is now available on Netflix. Maddy also said that she enjoyed the movie with Jack Black. I'm telling you, some of those Goosebumps books and TV shows are scary to me and don't always have a happy ending!
- Ghostbusters, the original movie, is a lot of fun. Most of you have probably already seen it. But, I recently realized that my younger son had seen it only because a teacher suggested he watch this old movie! Wow! I feel like it just came out yesterday. I'm getting old. Now there is a remake! I hear it is pretty good as well.
- Practical Magic is a romance/magical movie with Sandra Bullock and Nicole Kidman. Lots of 5 star ratings!
Movies for More Discriminating Tastes
- Nosferatu, The First Vampire Movie was recommended to me by my son. It predates the rating system because it was first made as a silent film in 1922. It was later put to heavy metal music. So, if you like heavy metal and scary stuff, this may be just the ticket. Or, just go for the silent film and see what you think. You can actually get it for free on Amazon Prime.
- Twilight Zone: The Movie came highly recommended by my movie buff friend, Justin. I used to love the TV show as a kid. You can still find it on cable sometimes. This movie is actually a group of 4 tales, and was made as a tribute to creator Rod Serling. It seems like a must watch!
- Young Frankenstein has long been a favorite of mine. It isn't very scary, but every time I watch it I remember that there are a couple of racy parts that really aren't for kids. The humor is timeless and it is one of those movies that you will quote lines from for the rest of your life, "What hump?" "You take the blond, I'll take the one in the turban." What is your favorite line from that movie?
- Invasion of the Body Snatchers gives me nightmares just thinking about it. The one I remember is the version with Donald Sutherland. When I hear Amazing Grace played on the bag pipes, I recall this movie and feel scared. There are many versions of it, but this is the one I always think of . Shudder I will probably have bad dreams tonight just from thinking about it.
Old Classic Movies
Sometimes older movies, (like Nosferatu) can be super scary or seem funny when we watch them today. Some were done so well, they are timeless. Here are a few you might like to try if you haven't seen them.
- Abbott and Costello Meet the Mummy and apparently other monsters like Frankenstein and the Creature from the Black Lagoon! You know these will be slapstick funny!
- The Thing From Another World is for Sci Fi lovers who want the scare factor. It is still getting 5 star ratings!
- For those of you who like the multi-cultural experience, you might want to check out Kwaidan, it is a film of Japanese Folktales with supernatural themes, made in the 60's. It is said to be beautifully done and very scary!
- Here is a classic collection of The Invisible Man, starring Claude Rains.
- Then of course, the complete collection of Frankenstein, Dracula, (Bela Lugosi) and The Mummy, (Boris Karloff).
When you start looking around for something to watch, you are going to see so many more films that you may have forgotten all about! I hope these will give you a good start on picking something great to watch on your Halloween! Whether you don't like to be scared at all or if you love to scream throughout the whole thing, let us know what you like, that stays within the PG13 range!