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Top 6 Family Friendly Horror Movies

Updated on September 19, 2010

My Picks for the Top 6 Family Friendly Horror Movies

Why "6" you ask?

Anyway, here is my list of my favorite family friendly horror movies seeing how Halloween is just around the corner. By "family friendly" I mean entertaining for all ages from children to teens to adults to old people to possums and armadillos, not films just aimed at young children; you know, there's something for everyone :)


#6 - The Haunted Mansion (2003)

Disney's "The Haunted Mansion" is a movie based on the popular attraction at the Disneyland parks. The film follows a workaholic man named Jim Evers (Eddie Murphy), when he, his wife/business partner Sara, and his two kids take a detour from their family vacation to try to help the owner of a mansion sell his estate. Not long after they arrive they notice some strange things happening at the house. With the help of the ghostly servants and a spirit head in a crystal ball they try to escape the mansion during a crazy night filled with grim grinning ghosts, floating orbs, ghostly knights, skeletal zombies and much more. During their visit they learn the real reason they were brought to the house, as well as some important family values.

The movie is Rated PG for frightening images, thematic elements and language. There are a few scenes that may be a bit too intense for younger viewers, specifically the zombies in the mausoleum, there are also references to murder and suicide but overall it's pretty benign. Probably better for ages 7 and up.

#5 - Hocus Pocus (1993)

In Disney's classic film "Hocus Pocus" a trio of 17th century witch sisters are accidentally resurrected by a teenage boy named Max on Halloween night. Now before the night is done the witches must find unsuspecting children to suck the life-force from in order to retain their youth. It's up to Max, his younger sister, and his new girlfriend to stop them before they succeed and become immortal. With the help of a talking black cat, they face down the witch's black magic, a zombie ex lover, and a hypnotized town before a final showdown with the witches themselves.

The movie is rated PG. It is a fun movie for children but there are some adult themes, including negative references to virginity, the death of a child and an overly flirty witch. Probably better for children 10 and up.

#4 - Monster House (2006)

Monster House is a computer animated movie about a boy named DJ and his best friend Chowder who, with the help of a new girl scout friend, try to find out about the weird happenings and disappearances involving their cranky old neighbor's house. When the old man suffers a heart attack, the three kids decide to explore the house themselves...only to find out it has been possessed by a vengeful spirit and aims to devour trick or treaters on Halloween night!

This movie is rated PG for scary images and sequences, thematic elements, some crude humor and brief language. It gets pretty intense near the end as the house becomes a much scarier and menacing version of it's previous self. There are a few crude but juvenile jokes since the main characters are preteen boys. Best for kids 10 and up.

#3 - Corpse Bride (2005)

Tim Burton's Corpse Bride is a charming stop-motion animated tale set in 19th century Europe about groom-to-be Victor set to wed Victoria when he mistakenly weds the skeletal corpse of a bride named Emily while practicing his vows in the woods. She takes him to the Land of the Dead which he comes to enjoy but still misses his living, breathing fiancée. We follow these characters as Victor tries to settle this life/death/love triangle.

Rated PG for some scary images and action, and brief mild language. This movie has a pretty dark atmosphere and although many of the characters are dead and decaying it's all very cartoony and not at all realistic. Nothing too scary. Probably best for ages 8 and up.

#2 - The Witches (1990)

In the film adaptation of Roald Dahl's classic children's book "The Witches," a young boy named Luke and his grandmother realize that it's up to them to stop an wicked creature known as the Grand High Witch and her army of witches, who are able to look like normal women (aside from a few tell-tale signs), from turning the world's children into mice. Things get even more complicated when Luke himself is turned into a mouse. Still being able to talk and think like a boy, he and his grandmother must do whatever they can to stop The Witches!

This film is rated PG but may be too intense for younger viewers, most notably the "unmasking" scene where all the witches meet at a convention and after making sure the doors are "locked and bolted" begin to remove their disguises. The Grand High Witch is especially creepy and gets pretty scary when she kills another witch by burning her into ash with her eyes. At the beginning of the film Luke finds out his parents have died in a car accident which might be upsetting to younger kids. Better for ages 8 and up.

#1 - The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993)

Tim Burton's classic "The Nightmare Before Christmas" is a stop-motion animated film about Jack Skellington, the skeletal king of Halloweentown, becoming bored with his life and accidentally stumbling upon Christmas Town. There he becomes so overwhelmed with new feelings he hatches a plan to try and take over Christmas by becoming Santa Claus himself...with a few Halloween inspired changes.

This film is rated PG for some scary images. This, being a Halloween themed movie, has many different types of monsters such as vampires, witches, werewolves and a menagerie of other bizarre characters; while most are pretty silly looking there are a couple that may be a little disturbing, ie. a fat child with his eyes sewn shut. They are all stop motion figures so none of the "gross" parts look very realistic. Probably better suited for ages 7 and up.

Which is Your Favorite?

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    • maddartist profile image

      maddartist 7 years ago from San Diego, CA

      Casper! I knew i was leaving someone out. Maybe i'll edit it later and make it top 7 movies haha

    • Glimmer515 profile image

      Glimmer515 7 years ago from Never Never Land

      Great list, but what about Casper??? Its got some scray moments but is very child friendly! I remembr loving that movie when I was younger

    • Youngcurves19 profile image

      Youngcurves19 7 years ago from Hawaii

      I LOVE these movies! Awesome!