Top 10 Horror Movies For Kids and Parents(who also love the genre)

Hello everyone.

baby pinheadOne of the biggest problems I’m sure a lot of parents face is what what should their kids be expose to and what should they hide them from.  Yes, we all know that the world itself is a scary place and so showing them a few scary movies.  It may just help prepare them for what lies ahead.  I don’ t fully agree with that statement although I do think there are other venues to show the problems of the world.  Horror movies shouldn’t be one of them.  Some of the movies on this list are scary to youngsters, but they won’t be traumatized by it.  These ten frightful films show that being scared can be a lot of fun and as long as they are with attentive parents. They should be able to sleep with the lights off after watching it.


Note***  The following list is not a worst to best list.  All of these movies are good.



10.  The 6th Sense

6th-sense-movie-02I know many of you reading this right now are rolling your eyes that I would even recommend this movie because you know the ending more then the film.  But to someone who has never seen this before(especially a kid).  It’s going to surprise them quite a bit.  M-Night Shamalan’s name has become a joke in recent years.  We forget that for a short while he made some really good movies.   There are a few gruesome moments that might make kids and parents recoil a little bit but it’s overall message is a very positive one.


9. The Others.

OthersI got some flack on The As You Watch Podcast for recommending this one on our Beetlejuice” episode.  But I will still stand by that it is perfectly acceptable to show young kids.  There isn’t any gore or foul language.  There is no sex except for a couple lying in bed and kissing.  It just has moments that will scare you and an ending that may be quite a surprise for them.  It is slower then a lot of other ghost movies, but it still a well directed and well acted paranormal flick.


8. Night of The Living Dead.

night-of-the-living-deadIf zombies are going to be in the mainstream.  I only think it’s not only fair, but respectable to show kids where they were created. “Night of The Living Dead” does show people eating human flesh, and a little girl killing her mom.  However the black and white look of it helps dilute many of it’s gory aspects.  It may look like a bunch of people held in a house battling zombies It also  addresses a lot of social and political problems that were going on around that time in history as well.


7. The Lady in White.

lady-in-whiteThis is a a very good movie I’m sure many of you have never seen before.  Its about a young boy(Lucas Haas) whose classmates lock him in a closet at school.  While in there he witnesses a ghostly apparition of a girl being attacked. Consumed by these images, the young boy seeks out the mystery of the young girl’s killer.  It is very good and will give both kids and parents a lot of good scares.


6.  Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein.

Bud Abbott, Lou Costello, Glenn Strange, Lon Chaney, Jr., and Bela Lugosi in ABBOTT AND COSTELLO MEET FRANKENSTEIN, 1948.This is a good one that introduces the legendary movie monsters of the past.  Without having to sit through each individual feature.  It even has the original actors reprising their famous roles.  Dracula, Frankenstein, The Wolf Man, and The Invisible man are all here in this very fun film.


5. ParaNorman

paranorman_1_1024This is the only animated movie to appear on this list.  I almost considered “Monster House“, but this one is slightly better.  It has elements of “The 6th Sense” in concept alone.  However this one goes into areas and takes chances with it’s story line that I have never seen before.  Especially in a kids flick.  It also knows the genre well and can poke fun at it from time to time.  Adults will love this one just as much as the kids.  Maybe even more.


4.  Little Shop of Horrors.

LittleshopThis one may seem a bit too campy to be put here.  Especially because it’s a musical about a man eating planet from outer space.  It still has some elements that can frighting kids like when Seymour(Rick Moranis) does kill someone for plant food(It’s all shown with shadows and no gore).  But the rest of it is just all out fun.  The songs are indeed awesome and are the very best that composers Howard Ashman and Alan Menken have ever made.  They are way better then Disney’s “The Little Mermaid“.


3. Jaws.

JawsOf all the movies on this list.  This is the one that still scares me when I watch it.  I don’t care how fake looking that shark may appear.  It’s physically there and that shit scares me.  When I was six or seven my parents took me to Universal Studios and I saw that damn mammal with teeth appear up close and it shook me for years. So much that if I see the movie being shown on cable.  I haft to shut my eyes if I click on that channel.  Just in case I happen to see old Bruce.  Yet my niece watched it at that age and had no problems with it.  So , I guess that must means I am a complete wuss.


2.. Gremlins.

MMDGREM EC005When I was young a lot of my friends had nightmares after they watched this flick.   Which is understandable because it does have a lot of scary and gory moments throughout it.   Yet it also has a lot of moments that are a lot of fun and help bring smiles to your faces too.  This along with “American Werewolf in London” are the two best examples of how to balance both horror and comedy.


1.  Poltergeist.

PoltergeistThis is one I know a lot of you will hate me for even mentioning.  This movie has many elements that will give kids fuel for a lot of scary dreams.  The dude ripping his own face off in the bathroom, and that freaking clown alone are reasons enough to sleep with the lights on.  But it’s the story of this family beating the odds to help get their daughter back that makes it a perfect family movie.  It doesn’t even start with any big scare moments and unlike a lot of movies within this genre.  You have a chance to spend some time getting to know these characters before bad things start happening.  I can fully expect some kids to be scared by this movie if they watch it alone.  But if they can see that their parents are there to protect them.  I don’t think the will be running into their bedroom as much.


So what do you think of my list.  Do you agree or disagree.  Let me know in the comments below.   I am taking a short break but will be back in a few weeks. In the mean time don’t forget to check out some other great reviews and articles in Movies at Dog Farm’s  Pre Halloween 2014 celebration(click link to learn more)

Pre'Ween 2014 banner with no border (1000 x 266) PNG





About The Vern

I love movies and I enjoy writing about them too. They both go pretty much hand in hand with each other and it's fun to discover new classics. I co host the podcasts The Film Pasture, ScreenTrax, and soon Cinema Recall. While also contributing reviews and articles to other great sites when I can.
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27 Responses to Top 10 Horror Movies For Kids and Parents(who also love the genre)

  1. Brittani says:

    That stupid clown in The Poltergeist gave me nightmares. Great list though. I know I watched a lot of horror movies when I was a kid, but I can’t remember if my parents knew about most of them or not, so lists like this are good. Letting your kids watch horror movies is a real struggle, damn it! lol

  2. theipc says:

    I think this is a great list!

  3. The Vern says:

    Thank you both very much. Brittani. My parents let me watch The Shining and a Nightmare on Elm Street when I was younger but my dad got upset when I watched Weird Science.

  4. Laura O says:

    I watched lots of horror films as a kid, often with my mum while my dad was working the late shift. Like Brittani, I watched Poltergeist and was totally freaked out by the clown (I am genuinely frightened of the damn things to this day). BUT, watching with an adult, in a safe environment didn’t do me any harm, and I’m a massive fan now while many of my friends struggle with even the most mild genre films.

  5. devnicsmith says:

    This is an amazing list! I remember showing my younger cousin Jaws when he was about 8… safe to say he avoided the lake for a while. I’m glad you put Poltergeist as number 1. Terrifying, but with a great family dynamic element.

    • The Vern says:

      devincsmith Thank You very much. I understand completely avoiding the waters after watching that flick. Yes I agree its the family dynamics of Poletergeist that make it a classic.

      Laura O- Yes I agree that if my parents were not with me when watching scary movies I would jump at every little thing. A lot of my friends struggle too with horror films. Thanks for the comments

  6. Bubbawheat says:

    I think it’s a good thing you don’t have kids. Depending on what age you’re thinking of, I would only let my daughter watch Paranorman, Abbot and Costello, or Little Shop on your list, and Gremlins 2 would be better than the first for youngsters. EVERY person I’ve heard of who watched Jaws as a kid is still afraid of the water. 13? Probably. 10? Doubtful.

    • The Vern says:

      If you havent seen the first Gremlins. It’s hard to really understand the jokes in the 2nd one. Because they reference from that one a lot It’s way too cartoonish which is good but without seeing the first movie I feel like kids won’t care much about what happens and just laugh at all the sillyness instead of caring about the actual plot. The first one while indeed scary did have a lot of humor and I think once the Gremlins are shown singing Christmas Carlos. I think most kids will not be as scared. My Niece could handle Jaws at 8 so I guess it all depends on the particular Kid and their parents. My friend let his daughter watch Kick Ass and she was only 9 at the time. She was not upset by the violence and even dressed as Hit Girl For Halloween.

  7. Great list, Vern! my daughter watched The Sixth Sense, Poltergeist and Gremlins at a young age and enjoyed them. I would have probably replaced Night of the Living Dead with Ghostbusters, just because at a young age (10-ish) she actually got a bit bored with NotLD:)

    • The Vern says:

      Your Daughter got bored with NotLD. Damn, she is more hardcore then me. That movie had moments that made me a little uneasy when I watched it at that age.

      • I think it was the B&W and the not truly comprehending the situation the characters were in. It has an almost documentary feel to it, so maybe it seemed like news-like to her. Kids generally like bright and flashy or another kid character in the film to relate to. She wasn’t about to relate to the girl in the cellar, lol. 🙂

  8. Love that pic at the top of the post, Vern. That look of utter confusion on the kid’s face sells it. Great list, too. The Lady In White is kind of a “deep cut”, and Abbot And Costello Meet Frankenstein is a great way to introduce kids to the Universal monsters. I personally think it’s good for kids to be at least a little traumatized by the occasional horror flick. It’s part of development, and just look how fondly we all remember the ones that scared us as children.

    Thanks for getting something together for Pre’Ween before your hiatus. I hope we see at least a few more before the big day!

  9. Great list! I’ve only seen some of the movies mentioned here, but putting some of your choices on my watch list!

    • The Vern says:

      Very glad to hear that. Which ones have you seen and which ones have you missed

      • I’ve seen The Sixth Sense (which I need to watch again at some point), Paranorman and Jaws (that movie scared me, I was also terrified of the ride. I didn’t care if the shark was fake, it definitely looked real to me). I’ve always been interested in Little Shop of Horrors, but never really had the urge to see it. Maybe this month!

      • The Vern says:

        Little shop of Horrors is a fun movie if you like 50’s creature features. Try and find the director’s cut if you can.

  10. Good list. Interesting idea 😀

  11. Mark Hobin says:

    I love all of these movies and I really dig the fact you put ParaNorman on this list. I would never show a child Night of the Living Dead. But as far as great horror films go, it is a classic and still one of the scariest I’ve ever seen.

    • The Vern says:

      Thanks for the comments Mark. I wished ParaNorman got more love

      Parlor of Horror. I can understand why your daughter couldn’t relate because it was Black and White, but sometimes that it can be scarier. The Mist is the perfect example. I prefer the Black and white version over the color one

      Thanks for visiting the site Tim The Film Guy

  12. vinnieh says:

    Great choices, The Others is so eerie and spine-chilling.

  13. The Vern says:

    Thank you very much for visiting Vinnieh. It isa good one. I thought of putting in Watcher in the Woods but I thought this is one that everyone would like more

  14. Nita Waters says:

    I’ve seen all of them but The Others, haven’t gotten around to that one yet. I have to say, I got excited by the picture of Pinhead at the beginning of this post. I thought it was a doll and was all set to buy it when I found it. Then Google informed me it’s a kid in a costume! Damn! lol

    • The Vern says:

      Thank you for reading Nita The Others is a gret one, but I urge you to not watch any trailers or read any reviews. Go in to this one cold. The Baby Pinhead is cool one but I do wonder what that kid will think of it when they see that movie.

  15. Chris says:

    Nice idea for a list ! I can certainly get onboard that Poltergeist and Gremlins are horror for kids. I would add Stephen King’s IT (1990), which has kids in the lead roles.

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