Spooky Movies for Scaredy Cats

Elizabeth Weir, Staff Writer

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If you’re anything like me, you love the festivities of Halloween, but just can’t get through a scary movie without screaming and/or fainting. Luckily for both of us, there are plenty of Halloween movies entertaining enough to keep us in the spooky spirit, the best of which we’ve pulled together into a handy selection:

1. Halloweentown (1998)

Have you ever suspected your grandma was a witch? Or that a major political figure was a time-freezing necromancer intent on taking over the mortal world? If so, then this is the movie for you! Immerse yourself in the nostalgic wonderland of skeleton cab-drivers and werewolf-hairdressers. Follow Marnie and her siblings, dorky Dylan and little Sophie, as she transforms from a sort-of bratty protagonist to spooktastic witch. If the first movie isn’t enough, there are three more in the series: Halloweentown II: Kalabar’s Revenge, Halloweentown High, and Return to Halloweentown. Though the first one is indubitably the best.

 

2. Twitches (2005)

Speaking of Disney originals, let’s not forget the cinematic masterpiece that is Twitches. On their 21st birthday, night owl Alex and sunny, artistic Camryn meet and discover that they are not only separated twins, but also witches, thus the portmanteau’d title. The perfect blend of Greek mythological allusion, magical inter-dimensional travel, early 2000’s humor, and foreboding forces of evil, this is as much of a must-rewatch as everyone’s other favorite Disney original Lemonade Mouth.

 

3. The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993)

Where do we even start with this one? Aside from the utter terror that is the beanbag-reminiscent boogie man, this musical is more fun and spooky than scary. Be mesmerized as the lovable narcissistic leader of the Halloween folk, Jack “Pumpkin King” Skellington, undergoes a music-filled identity crisis while stalked by the creepy duck-man’s creation, Sally, who is quite literally tearing at the seams for him. With unforgettable musical classics like “This is Halloween” and “Kidnap the Sandy Claws,” this movie is perfect for stirring up Halloween hype. If you really love spooky stop-motion, also see Corpse Bride, Frankenweenie, Paranorman, Coraline, and Wallace and Gromit: Curse of the Were-rabbit (the latter of which is my personal favorite).

 

4. It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown (1966)

As it’s only 25 minutes long, it may not technically be a movie, but it’s timeless nonetheless. With the same simple charm as Schulz’ Peanuts strips, follow three different story lines: Charlie Brown getting rocks for treats, Linus anxiously awaiting the ascension of the Great Pumpkin, and the gripping adventures of the WWI Flying Ace, Snoopy, as he hunts down the infamous Red Baron. Going on 53 years strong, this show is as immortally fun as Winnie the Pooh: Boo to You Too!

 

5. Hocus Pocus (1993)

This one goes without saying. Appropriately located in Salem, Massachusetts, watch as California boy Max, in a vain attempt to impress his crush, accidentally resurrects the Sanderson sisters (including the amazing Bette Midler) and must protect his sharp-tongued sister Dani until the sun rises and the witches return to the grave. Amusing, intriguing, and spooky in every sense of the word, it’s no wonder Freeform is airing it 30 times this month.

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