Halloween is literally a month away. Can you believe it? And what better excuse than to get into the spirit then to have a (not so scary) Halloween movies marathon?
I don’t know about you but I’m a big scaredy cat. I see a trailer for a horror movie (let alone the actual movie) and I can’t sleep for days. But that shouldn’t mean people like us have to miss out on all the fun! So I’ve compiled a list of my favourite not so scary Halloween movies. There’s something for everyone whether you like cute family movies, hilarious flicks or a cult classic (with a bit of gore thrown in) they’ll be bound to get you in the mood for fun this Halloween.
Hocus Pocus – 1993 [PG]
On Halloween night three witch sisters are resurrected after centuries in exile. It’s then up to two teenagers, a young girl, and an immortal cat to stop them for good (and save all the children from their evil plan).
This has to be my all-time favourite Halloween movie. It has everything – it’s set in Salem, has witches, spells, trick or treating and costumes, great characters and a whole lot of comedy… a typically well done Disney movie.
Practical Magic – 1998 [PG]
A funny and romantic story that follows the two sisters who are raised by their aunts after their parents’ death. The sisters are taught the uses of practical magic and over time find they carry a curse: the men they fall in love with are doomed to an untimely death. Now adults the Sisters must use all of their powers to fight the family curse and other supernatural forces that arise.
It’s a really sweet story line filled with magic and family and sisterly love and how important the power of friendship above everything can be.
Bedknobs and Broomsticks – 1971 [G]
During the Battle of Britain an apprentice witch decides to use her new powers to help defeat the Nazis. Along with three kids and a conman the crew uses an enchanted bed to travel into a fantasy land and search for the missing component to a magic spell.
There’s something about this movie that’s so endearing. It’s part real life action movie, part animation so the main characters can get into some hilarious situations (especially the final scene). Perfect for kids (and kids at heart). It’s my go-to movie whenever I’m feeling down and bound to be a hit.
The Haunted Mansion – 2003 [PG]
A realtor and his wife and children are summoned to a mansion, which they soon discover is haunted, and while they attempt to escape, he learns an important lesson about the family he has neglected.
It’s obvious why this movie has to be on the list for your movie marathon. Does anything say Halloween more than a haunted mansion and ghosts? Cool fact: the movie is based on the classic ride by the same name in Disneyland. Various scenes in the movie are modelled on the ride… so cool!
The Addams Family – 1991 + Addams Family Values – 1993 [PG]
Both movies revolve around the “creepy, cooky and mysteriously spooky” Addams Family who are based on the characters from the cartoon and tv show of the same name. The family, although eccentric (who enjoy pain, tragedy and death) are very loving and protective and both movies test this.
The characters (and the actors who play them) really make these movies along with the black humor, subtle innuendo and continuous Halloween themes. Adults and kids will get this movie but on totally different levels. Something for everyone!
Labyrinth – 1986 [PG]
A selfish teenage girl wishes for her baby brother to be taken away by the Goblin King (played by David Bowie). When her wish is granted she is then given 13 hours to solve a labyrinth and rescue him.
This musical adventure fantasy film was directed by Jim Henson so there are plenty of muppet-style animatronics featured throughout both cute and creepy. And with David Bowie as Goblin King he recorded five songs for the film. I remember watching this movie as a kid and I can definitely see why this movie has gained a huge cult following.
The Witches – 1990 [PG]
While holidaying with his family a young boy stumbles onto a witch convention and must stop them… even after he has been turned into a mouse!
To tell you the truth I liked this movie as a kid but the witches scared the living daylights out of me. Watching it now it still sends some shivers down my spine but really it’s quite tame. Maybe it was the fact that the witches hated children and turned them into mice- eeek!
Ghostbusters – 1984 + Ghostbusters II – 1989 [PG]
In the original Ghostbusters three unemployed parapsychology professors set up shop as a unique ghost removal service. They then return in Ghostbusters II and revive their business to save New York (again).
These are real classics! Ghostbusters II being one of my favourite movies of all time. They explore some darker themes obviously with ghosts and the supernatural but it’s done with humor. And the main characters are a lot of fun. If not for Halloween you have to watch these (and have a mini Ghostbusters Marathon).
Bettlejuice – 1988 [PG]
A couple of recently deceased ghosts contract the services of a “bio-exorcist” in order to remove the obnoxious new owners of their house.
Quite a simple synopsis but this is basically what the movie’s about. Filled with a tonne of slapstick and dark humor (most of it only an adult would truly understand). I loved this movie as a kid but didn’t fully understand and appreciate it until I watched when i was all grown up :-). Quite rude at times but a lot of fun.
CAUTION – HALLOWEEN MOVIES JUST FOR THE ADULTS
… and these next two are something a bit different. As you can see from the ratings they aren’t as family friendly. They’re real cult classics with a lot of gore but that’s what also make them hilarious. Not quite horror movies but that bit more serious than the other not so scary Halloween movies on the list.
Shaun of the Dead – 2004 [R]
Shaun is a 30-something loser living in London. When the town is completely overrun with zombies, Shaun must grow up and protect both his girlfriend and his mother.
The zombies in this flick tick the box for my Halloween list because it’s all made comedic especially with Simon Pegg at the helm of the gang. You’ll have to watch it to see why it’s such a critical success.
Hansel + Gretel Witch Hunters – 2013 [R]
Hansel & Gretel are bounty hunters who track and kill witches all over the world in retribution. They’re called to a town where children are disappearing and as the Blood Moon approaches, the siblings encounter a new form of evil that needs to be defeated once and for all.
This movie is described as dark fantasy action-horror. It’s filled with extreme amounts of violence and gore, sometimes for no reason, which borders on the outrageous and tongue-in-cheek humor throughout. Hence why i love it so much. But also plenty of creepy looking witches for Halloween.
So there you have it. My ultimate not so scary Halloween movies list. Four weekends until Halloween so we better get cracking on that movie marathon. What’s your favourite Halloween movie?