Every year I say “This year we’re going to watch 1 holiday movie a day, starting with Halloween!” I love holidays and I love movies…but see, every time I proclaim this plan my schedule audibly laughs at me and says “HAAAA! When? When are you going to find time to watch movies on top of homeschooling 5 kids, chasing the toddler, working all of your side jobs, and managing your home? When, Meg?”
This year I’ve lowered my goal a little bit (besides, have you ever browsed Netflix for Thanksgiving movies that are culturally appropriate, historically accurate, AND family friendly?)
10 Family Friendly Halloween Movies
Because I know what is ok for my family may not be ok for yours I have included a link to Common Sense Media for each Halloween movie. CSM features very detailed reviews that will help you decide if these Halloween movies are acceptable for your family.
1. Halloweentown We’ve been watching Halloweentown since it came out as a made-for-tv movie in 1998. My oldest child enjoyed the later movies in the series as a young teen. It’s a pretty tame movie about a young girl raised in the human world by her mother, who is actually a witch in hiding. After learning she is a witch the girl has to travel to Halloweentown to save the town from an evil-doer. Common Sense Media Guide
2. The Nightmare Before Christmas I admit that it took me quite a while to warm up to this movie, I always thought it was creepy. My family, however, loves this movie and watches it several times a year and it has grown on me, I still find it creepy but also charming. This is the story of a
man skeleton who longs for a new, exciting life. He finds excitement, but not the right type. Common Sense Media Guide
3. Scared Shrekless is a spin-off made-for-tv movie featuring the loveable ogre and his sidekicks. My kids enjoy this movie and it’s short, making it a great break in between activities. Common Sense Media Guide
4. The Little Vampire Do you remember Johnathan Lipnicki? You know, “The human head weighs eight pounds”? Anyhow, he was a little older when he starred in The Little Vampire but it’s still a great family movie. Johnathan stars as Tony, a little boy who moves to Scotland with his parents. Tony has a hard time adjusting until he is befriended by Rudolph, who just happens to be a vampire. Common Sense Media Guide
5. Spooky Buddies Even the littlest ones will love this madcap adventure featuring some of the cutest dogs around. The story line is a bit far-fetched in this one but the cute puppies make up for it. Who doesn’t like golden retriever puppies? Bad people, that’s who! Common Sense Media Guide
6. The Dog Who Saved Halloween Because you can never have enough cute puppy movies, this is a new favorite! There is some serious star power voicing the characters (including the amazing Lance Henrickson, who, incidentally, is a friend of my husband! That totally makes him famous by proxy!) There’s a lot of potty humor in this one, which of course my kids found hilarious (sigh, I try!) Anyhow, this is a fun movie that is worth a view. Common Sense Media Guide
7. Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein Want to talk about zany hijinxs? This move is all about zany hijinxs! This classic Halloween movie will have you and your kids in stitches! It’s good, safe fun for the whole family! Common Sense Media Guide
8. It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown What Halloween movie list would be complete without The Great Pumpkin? I probably don’t have to describe this one for you :) Common Sense Media Guide
9. Boo to You Too! Winnie the Pooh! My oldest child was OBSESSED with Winnie the Pooh movies when she was a baby. Yes, my child was obsessed, not me. Nope, not me. (Totally me). This is an adorable, just scary enough, movie that shares the common theme of friendship found in all of the Pooh movies and books. This one is a little difficult to find as it was a straight to TV/video release, but if you’re like me and happen to still have that VHS copy from 1996…There is no Common Sense Media Guide for Boo to You Too!
10. Mickey’s House of Villians So I don’t know if you know this, but my family is a little Disney-crazy. Just a wee bit. (Check out this Buzzfeed list, my husband and I are #4). This is one of my kid’s favorite movies, it’s based off the old Disney Channel Cartoon House of Mouse. One day the villians took over and it was up to Mickey and his pals to save their dinner club! I think what we like most about this one is that the movie features favorite newer characters watching old cartoons. Loads of fun and not scary at all! Common Sense Media Guide