How is it already almost November? How is it that the trees are almost bare and the wind is just starting to shift to a chill that reaches the bones? How is it Halloween week, and I’ve only felt like jumping out of my skin once?

Maybe you’re like me in that you love All Hallow’s Eve for its celebration of autumn, dressing up, and the American sweet tooth – but you’re not so sure about the scare factor.

So for my first blog in a while, I thought I’d share my favorite fall hack:

Halloween Movies for Scaredy Cats (not just for kids anymore!)

  • The Addams Family (1991) – You get to enjoy young Angelica Houston as Morticia and a baby Christina Ricci as Wednesday in one of the best morbid misfit stories around! With fantastic early 90’s graphics and a story that revolves around the importance of family, I would argue this is one of the best TV-to-movie adaptations in existence (available on Netflix).


  • Beetlejuice (1988) – Speaking of baby actors, does anyone actually remember Alec Baldwin before the gut? This Tim Burton cult classic has a little more crass humor thanks to the leading bio-exorcist, but ironically it also revolves around a theme of chosen family and true love even in the afterlife (available to rent on YouTube for $2.99)


  • Young Frankenstein (1974) – By far, this is my favorite satirical horror movie of choice. It might be the most accurate film adaptation of Mary Shelley’s original text, AND it stars a young Peter Boyle as Frankenstein’s (or is it Frahnkenshteen?) monster. Complete with Mel Brook’s punny humor, you’re more likely to end up crying from laughter than fear at this Halloween classic (available on Netflix).

young frank.gif

  • Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (2005) – The main character is a candy maker. Multiple children meet an untimely demise because of their sugary gluttony. What better moral movie message could you share with children during this time of year? (Also for the record, I adore the original Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, circa 1971, but if you’re going for just a bit more creepy, you really have to go with Johnny Depp as Mr. Wonka over Gene Wilder, if you ask me…). Then again, there are so many great Johnny Depp movies that could be on this list, like Dark Shadows and Edward Scissorhands. Marathon anyone? (available on Netflix)


  • The Rocky Horror Picture Show (1975) – I completely understand if this movie is not your cup of tea, and if you’re looking for family friendly Halloween movies, I would encourage waiting a while before showing this one off to your kids. But it has been part of my Halloween tradition for almost 10 years now, and really you should just join the rest of us already. It’s another cult classic you need to see at least once in your life, and October 31 is one of the best times to get midnight tickets for an actual theatre viewing. Or maybe you have a better movie to watch with cross-dressing aliens, a catchy dance number, and Tim Curry in platform heals? (available to rent on YouTube for $2.99)

rocky horror.gif

What about you? What are some of your favorite non-slasher Halloween flicks? And while we’re at it, do you think The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993) belongs as a Christmas movie, or is it more Halloween-y? Weigh in in the comment section below, and I hope you have a great Halloween weekend!

2 thoughts on “Halloween for Scaredy Cats

  1. I think Nightmare Before Christmas is a bit more Halloween than Christmas, but I’ll watch it for both!! LOL Love your list of movies. Young Frankenstein is a classic, and I ADORE The Rocky Horror Picture Show. I’ve seen it many times at the theater with live actors mouthing the words, etc.. Best way.



  2. ET was based during Halloween. I’d add this one
    Also Nightmare before Christmas is a Christmas movie. It has Christmas music in it.


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