16 Halloween Movies You Can Watch Even If You're A Scaredy Cat
Halloween is all about the candy, costumes, and scary movies. Unless you're me. Yeah, I'm a candy fiend and I dig a creative (and tasteful!) costume, but horror flicks and I don't mix well together. Get that "found footage" ghost movie out of my face. I spook easily (e.g., if I hear someone slam a car door shut in the distance, I will yelp), but that doesn't mean I don't want to celebrate this time of year. It just means I simply refuse to come over and watch The Texas Chainsaw Massacre with you. Don't take it personally.
The last actual horror movie I saw in theaters was The Ring. I covered my face with a sweater and cried until it was over. I assume that all scary movies will traumatize me in a similar fashion, so how does a wuss like me get into the H-ween spirit? Fear (ugh) not, there are plenty o' non-scary Halloween movies! The following 16 movies are the best ways to get your spooky fix without the side effects of sweaty palms, a violently fast heart rate, shortness of breath, vivid nightmares, and a nonstop impulse to look over your shoulder. Trust me, if I can stomach these movies, you can boo, er, too!
Part of the movie takes place during Christmas time, but that's neither here nor there. Johnny Depp plays a man with scissors for hands, a haircut that looks like the forest in Snow White, porcelain skin, and clothing made out of discarded Hot Topic belts. The entire movie is creepy (it is a Tim Burton movie), but it's more fantasy than horror.
Image: 20th Century Fox
'Addams Family'/'Addams Family Values'
They're the spookiest family ever. No one does goth-chic quite like Morticia Addams. The children are wonderfully macabre, a disembodied hand runs around the manor, and their butler could pose as Frankenstein's monster at any given moment.
Image: Paramount Pictures
'Let The Right One In'
At times, the love story between a vampire girl and a mortal boy is gruesome, but it isn't scary. As creepy as the movie can be, it won't turn you into a shaking wreck.
Image: Sandrew Metronome
CLASSIC COMEDY. In junior high, I babysat two kids who insisted we watch this movie every time I sat for them. If children can handle it, anyone can handle it.
Image: 20th Century Fox
'It's The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown'
Have you seen this movie? You haven't? And you claim to understand what Halloween is all about?
'The Nightmare Before Christmas'
It's a Halloween/Christmas hybrid movie! It'll help you segue from All Hallow's Eve into Xmas. We all know that transition can be tough — it pains me to take down my Halloween decorations every year — but this movie softens the blow. The story is a little dark (spoiler alert: Santa gets kidnapped), but it's so delightful.
Image: Buena Vista Pictures
This movie is as scary as a skyscraper-sized Stay Puft Marshmallow Man. Hmm. Wait. The more I think about that, the more I realize how terrifying that would be. Forget I said anything.
Image: Columbia Pictures
Christina Ricci crushin' on ghost Devon Sawa!
Image: Universal Pictures
Yeah, this movie has ghosts (and whatever Beetlejuice is), but the crown jewel is Lydia Deetz. There are few things as perfect as Winona Ryder playing a goth teen who can see ghosts. I don't know if a sequel can live up to the original... unless Ryder once again plays a goth teen who can see ghosts.
Image: Warner Bros.
This Disney Channel Original Movie holds up over time. Could you imagine finding out you're actually a witch? And THEN finding out there is an entire town devoted to Halloween? Killing me softly, Disney Channel.
Image: Disney Channel
This movie has its gory moments (and a handful of jump scares), but it's an action-comedy. I refused to see this movie in theaters because I was convinced it was going to be too much for my nerves, and I was so wrong to do so. This movie has one of the best cameos ever. Someone should conduct a survey. I'd bet 90 percent of the people surveyed would say the cameo in this movie trumps every other movie cameo.
Image: Columbia Pictures
'Shaun of the Dead'
Another "bloody-but-funny" zombie movie! If you're familiar with Simon Pegg and Edgar Wright's work, you know they are bomb dot com at parody. This movie is no exception.
Image: Universal Pictures/Rogue Pictures
It's violent. It's vulgar. It's twisted. It's disgusting. It's hilarious. It's not safe for kids. It might be the campiest horror movie on the planet. The moment you try to understand what the truck is going on with the plot, it's really difficult to come back up for air. It's too bananas to be scary.
Image: Union Film Distribution Company
This is not a good movie. It isn't fun to watch. But it isn't scary. Not even a little bit. You'll be too grossed out by the imagery forced into your eyes to be scared. I don't recommend this movie, but I will vouch for its non-scariness. I suppose the most terrifying part about this movie is that there is a human in the real world who wrote the demented screenplay.
Image: IFC Films/Bounty Films