Are you looking for great Halloween movies to watch over the weekend? Don’t want to actually give your kids nightmares for the next few months though? There are some great family halloween movies out there you can watch together – some funny, some a wee bit scary and some not scary at all but just good fun.
Get the lights turned down low and get the popcorn on!
Here are our top 10 family favourites
Hocus Pocus – (Now with Hocus Pocus 2 for an added bonus)
(1993) A Disney movie starring Bette Midler, Sarah-Jessica Parker and Kathy Najimy this is great for young kids and older. It’s had a revamp now with Hocus Pocus 2 with the same cast (who all incidentally still look amazing) and is a firm favourite family movie.
The Plot : It tells the story of a young boy called Sam who has moved into a town called Salem and struggles to fit in. He accidentally awakens a trio of diabolical witches who have been executed in the 17th century. They also love draining childrens life force to stay young. When his sister is taken by the witches he must save her and steal their book to stop them from becoming immortal.
(1988) A Fun movie for older kids although younger ones may find it fun too. Starring Michael Keaton, Geena Davis, Alex Baldwin and Winona Ryder amongst many other great actors, it’s the type of movie kids love and adults do too.
The Plot : After Barbara and Adam die in a car accident, they return to their home to discover that it’s been bought by the unbearable Deetze family who are in the process of completely redesigning it. To try and get them out, they attempt various haunting methods, none of which work so enlist the help of the terrifying Beetlejuice (don’t say his name 3 times). There is a range of great characters, special effects and a great script which will make you laugh all the way through it.
(2009) Made by the wonderful film company Laika, Coraline is a kids movie which is quite frankly, terrifying. Parents – don’t be put off by the animation aspect of this, adults should watch this with their children. Voices by Dakota Fanning, Terri Hatcher and John Hodgman.
The Plot : A young girl moves into a new house with her family who are busy trying to renovate and work so don’t have as much time to interact with her as she’d like. She chats to the eccentric neighbours and discovers a hidden door which leads her to a perfect version of her own home, parents and all. The parents have buttons for eyes and treat her like a princess, however she discovers a sinister side to this perfect world…
The Addams family
(1991) Again another great movie based on the original black and white series with various spin offs, all of which are worth a watch. Starring many great actors but including Anjelica Huston, Raul Julia and Christopher Lloyd.
The Plot: The eccentric Addams Family live together on a large mansion but have a sadness in the family as Gomez brother Fester left many years ago after a fall out. He appears suddenly at a seance accompanied by the family lawyer Tully (who owes money to a loan shark) who says that he has been found but lost his memory. Gomez is over the moon to have his brother back but his wife Morticia is suspicious. Gomez realises that he is being swindled by the lawyer and loan shark and challenges “Fester” to see what is going on.
The Haunted Mansion
(2003) Starring Eddie Murphy, Marsha Thomason and Jennifer Tilly. This is a great Disney movie which is just good fun and good for children young and old. Get the popcorn out and have a laugh with your kids with this one!
The Plot: Jim (Eddie Murphy) is a workaholic and has been neglecting his family. After speaking to his wife, he agrees to go on holiday and they stop off at a creepy mansion that he wants to sell. The family get trapped in the mansion and discover that it’s occupied by ghosts and spirits. How do they escape and break the curse that is hanging over the property and residents?
(2015) A family favourite starring Jack Black, Dylan Minnette and Odeya Rush. This is a great movie for young kids and teenagers and a good family favourite. Adults can comfortably watch this and enjoy it too and it doesn’t have “scares” as such but has good Halloween action. Again, it now has a follow up – Goosebumps 2 which is also worth a watch.
The Plot : This tells the story of a teenager (Zach) who moves in to a new town and meets a beautiful and mysterious young girl. He discovers her father is the famous but reclusive author R.L Stine who doesn’t want them meeting. After discovering the facts about R.L Stine, Zach accidentally unleashes the characters on the town and must return them back to the books where they belong.
(1990) Starring Angelica Huston, Mai Zetterling and Jasen Fisher amongst others (Rowan Atkinson is fantastic). This is a great family movie, adults love it and it’s genuinely frightening for kids. It sticks to the original Roald Dahl story and has been remade recently starring the voice of Chris Rock.
The Plot : A young boys is looked after by his grand mother after the death of his parents and they go for a holiday to a seaside town. Unfortunately the hotel is also being visited by a confederation of witches which is attended by the grand high witch (Huston) who are conspiring to get rid of all children by turning them into mice. How will they be stopped?
This has a great script, the special effects are great and genuinely frightening and it’s got some fantastic actors in it. Well worth a Halloween movie watch!
(2006) An under-rated animation which is really though provoking for children and may even bring a wee tear to the eye. Good for younger kids as it’s a wee bit scary but not terrifying (although my kids have since said they found it quite frightening when they were small) so has a definite Halloween feel.
The Plot : On an otherwise lovely street there is a house which is not only a bit scary, but may actually be possessed and want to harm local children. 3 boys try to tell the adults but as is the way, none will believe them. As Halloween approaches, they must work out how to stop or destroy the house to prevent it hurting any kids doing their trick or treating. It’s got action, a bit adventure and is a wee bit scary.
The Box Trolls
(2014) Another Laika movie, this flies a wee bit below the radar. It’s actually a great movie for one reason you won’t have thought of – if your kids love this, the Halloween costume is really easy to make with a cardboard box! The voices are lovely in it and done by Ben Kingsley, Jared Harris and Nick Frost.
The Plot : A young boy has been raised below the town of Cheesebridge by a colony of Box trolls. These misunderstood trolls are hated by the residents above and don’t see the wonderful creations they make out of the discarded town rubbish which they collect at night. When the town exterminator Archibald Snatcher devises a plan to get rid of them and raise himself in society at the same time, the boy must devise a plan to go above and stop him. Beautiful animation with a thought provoking script and a lovely film to watch at halloween.
The Monster Squad
(1987) Again an oldie but a good Halloween movie. It’s a great adventure with good battling evil and some laughs along the way.
The Plot : Dracula exists and wants to rule the world with the help of other monsters such as the Mummy and Frankensteins monster. The local kids must work together to defeat Dracula and his band of monsters!
A great way to watch these is with some speakers or a large screen or if you’ve got the room – a movie room. Get in touch to get some advice on setting the perfect mood.