Halloween is only a few weeks away, and along with hang the yearly decorations, it’s time to cue Halloween-esque films. On this list are both scream-inducers and kid-friendly movies that are sure to please everyone and inspire a spooky spirit.
A Nightmare Before Christmas (1993)
This Tim Burton classic mixes two holidays in one. The animated movie takes place in Halloweentown and follows proclaimed “Pumpkin King” Jack Skellington as he tries to take over Christmas. This film is perfect for all, with plenty of songs to sing along to and not so much of the out-of-your-chair scares.
The Shining (1980)
Based on the novel by famous writer Stephen King, the story is about a family who moves into the very haunted Stanley Hotel after the patriarch, Jack, was hired to be the winter caretaker. Over time, the spirits get to Jack, which makes him act violently and hostiley toward his wife and son, Wendy and Danny. Having nowhere to go, Wendy must find a way to protect herself and Danny from the increasingly dangerous Jack.
Monster House (2006)
This animated movie brings an interesting twist to the typical haunted house story. DJ Walters lives next door to Horace Nebbercracker, an old man who is not very fond of children. Nebbercracker lives in a house that seems to be alive, eating up anything and anyone that comes too close. With the help of his two friends, DJ decides to get to the bottom of what’s really going and why the house is the way it is.
The Conjuring (2013)
“Variety” magazine described this movie as the “most viscerally effective thrillers in recent memory,” and for good reason. Directed by James Wan (who also directed “Insidious” and “Saw”), this film tells of a family who moves into a house that is already inhabited by a very negative spirit. The family then turns to paranormal experts Ed and Lorraine Warren (based on the couple in real life) for help to rid the house of the angry spirit. This film provides plenty of moments that make viewers want to cover their eyes in suspense, but doesn’t go too over the top with the scares.
Hocus Pocus (1993)
This Disney movie combines zombies, talking cats and witches to make a fun and entertaining Halloween movie. It is about a trio of witches who steal children to suck the youth out of them. When they are resurrected from the dead three centuries later, it is up to a teen named Max, his sister Dani, and his crush Emily to stop the witches from fulfilling their goal and wiping out the youth of Salem, Oregon. This kid-friendly movie is filled with plenty of humorous one-liners and plenty of catchy songs.
This slasher-horror picture managed to inspire a copious amount of sequels, but none could quite live up to the original. The movie begins with a young Michael Myers killing his sister and going to jail, only to escape years later. He decides to return to his hometown, committing more murders and terrifying a teenage girl named Laurie who, for some reason, becomes Michael’s main target. This movie is not for the faint of heart, but it does fulfill any scare factor you might be craving this season.
A Disney Channel classic, the film is about a girl, Marnie, who discovers that her grandmother is actually a witch who lives in Halloweentown,a place where everyone has some sort of magical powers. Unfortunately, this town is starting to be overrun by dark powers, and it is up to Marnie to protect the town and the people living in it.
A string of murders rock a high school and a small town, and the movie focuses on trying to catch the killers. As suspicion travels from one person to another, the police must act quickly in order to determine who the killer is before anyone else is murdered.
From haunted houses to youth-seeking witches, these films are perfect to watch during the month of October so that everyone can get into the Halloween spirit. Don’t forget the popcorn!