Road To Halloween: Sydney’s Top 5 Kids Halloween Movies That Are Actually Scary

Written by Sydney O'Keefe October 30, 2017

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To paraphrase You’ve Got Mail, the things we read and watch as children stay with us in a way that no other books or movies ever do. In honour of this, I have chosen my top 5 children’s Halloween movies that are actually pretty scary. While they may not match the level of horror of Insidious or Paranormal Activity, these movies will still keep you up at night and have you looking for furbies come to life, dolls with buttons for eyes, or Boogeymen hiding under your bed.

5. Return to Oz (1985)

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Return To Oz is the lesser known sequel of The Wizard of Oz. Upon her return to Oz (following electrotherapy), Dorothy learns that her friends have turned to stone, and encounters Wheelers. This sequel has all the scary creation of The Wizard of Oz coupled with electric shock therapy, and death. This movie’s scare factor is two-fold. The first being the wheelies as pictured above, a half human half wheel monstrosity chasing Dorothy all through Oz. This literal nightmare on wheels would be scary enough without the added bonus of grotesque wheeled limbs. The second is the depression and subsequent barbaric use of electroshock therapy. Everything about this movie is traumatic.

4. Monster House (2006)

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This movie’s portrayal a house haunted by a woman who dies by drowning in cement. That is already terrifying statement on its own. But this coupled with the house eating actual people, i.e. cannibalism,  adds to the fact that is movie is not just for kids. The old man living in the house even keeps a creepy shrine in his basement, including his wife’s body encased in cement, a scene that is reminiscent of the reveal of Mrs. Bates in Psycho. However, unlike Psycho, this movie has a happy ending ensuring a blissful sleep!

3. Gremlins (1984)scary

Gremlins begins as an adorable child’s pet, and leads to a monster army. The adorable Gizmo is tortured by his evil fellow gremlins. Oh, and the evil gremlins also murder humans. They cause mass mayhem and carnage. These creepy little creatures prove to be malicious villains. Flooding the city with mutated reptilian monsters. Even though the effects are not what they would be today, the creatures manage to be somewhat life-like and equally creepy as a modern monster.

2. Don’t Look Under the bed (1999)
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Don’t Look Under the Bed is a Disney Channel original movie. That being said, this movie used to terrify me and is still pretty scary. The premise is around a Boogeyman (of the character’s own creation) terrorizing children. It deals with some dark stuff, like childhood innocence and even leukaemia. Some of the scarier aspects of this movie is the boogeyman dimension that is residing directly beneath your bed is incredibly ominous. But, the undoubted scariest theme of this movie is the idea of uncontrollable change. Erin can’t control her brother’s illness and she can’t control Ty’s disturbing descent into darkness.

1. Coraline (2009)

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The film focuses on Coraline who receives a creepy, Chuckie-like rag doll that resembles her with buttons for eyes. The doll takes her to her doll family, that appear to be more loving and attentive than her real family. The Other world is full of doppelgangers with buttons for eyes. The button eyes are the truly creepy motif that makes this story so frightening.  Coraline can only stay in the Other world if her eyes are sewn over with buttons. Honestly, this is the stuff of nightmares. The Other Mother is terrifying, cutting the eyes out of children, grotesquely sewing up mouths, and  trying to drag Coraline into her world. The movie has some seriously scary characters including the spider-like Other Mother and grub creature the Other Father becomes.

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