Looking for scary movies that the whole family can watch? Wanting to have a family night with pizza and a movie? We’ve got you covered. See our list below for family friendly scary movies that won’t traumatize the children but will still entertain.
From 2006, this PG rated movie features three youths who can’t convince the adults that a neighboring house is a live creature that intends to harm them. With Halloween approaching, the three must find a way to destroy the house before it can harm innocent trick-or-treaters.
Since its debut in 1984, Gremlins has become a minor classic. A salesman buys a special gift–a furry and cute little mogwai– for his son and is warned by the shopkeeper not to expose it to bright light or feed it after midnight. Chaos ensues when the man ignores this advice and a gang of gremlins attacks their town.
Featuring a gang of scientists trying to destroy supernatural beings for money, this 1984 movie has many fans. A blend of comedy and special effects, Ghostbusters stars Bill Murray and Sigourney Weaver. After discovering a doorway to another dimension, these scientists must save New York CIty from destruction.
The Nightmare Before Christmas
From producer Tim Burton comes this animated classic. The film follows the efforts of Jack Skellington, the pumpkin king of Halloweentown, to overtake Christmastown by kidnapping Santa Claus and assuming his role. Critics have praised The Nightmare Before Christmas for its musical and visual appeal. Rated PG, this seventy-five minute fantasy, is perfect for a night of family fun.
If your children have read R. L Stine’s Goosebumps books, they’re sure to love this movie. But even if they haven’t, Goosebumps is still a great kid-friendly movie. Upset about moving from the big city to a small town, young Zach Cooper is delighted to meet his pretty next door neighbor who happens to be the daughter or author R. L. Stine. When Zach accidentally releases the monsters from the books, he and his neighbors must return the beasts back to the books where they belong. Rated PG, this film is full of adventure.
Young Victor Frankenstein, a science nerd and an outsider at school, is quite upset when he loses his dog Sparky. Enter his science teacher (played by Martin Landau) with advice on how he can bring Sparky back to life. The experiment works and all goes well, until Victor’s schoolmates discover his secret and use it on other animals. Directed and produced by Tim Burton, Frankenweenie is animated fun at its best.
E.T. The Extraterrestrial
Gather the entire crew to watch Stephen Spielburg’s wonderful tale of a homesick alien. Released in 1982, E.T. combines sci-fi and adventure in a way that tugs at the heartstrings of most every viewer. When a gentle alien becomes stranded on Earth, he is befriended by a young boy and his siblings in California. This PG-rated film won many awards including Oscars for best music and visual effects.
It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown
In this animated classic, Linus waits in the pumpkin patch for the elusive great pumpkin to appear. The movie appeals to little ones with its constant action, and it includes a bit of humor geared to adults. Many families watch this movie each year to introduce the Halloween season. And, unlike most scary movies, this one seems safe even for the youngest viewers.
We hope that you can kick off the Halloween season with any or all of these family-friendly scary movies. Grab the popcorn, dim the lights, and snuggle up to one of these great seasonal films.
For more information on these films see https://editorial.rottentomatoes.com/guide/essential-scary-movies-for-kids/.
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