So your kid is getting to that age! All those years of filtering their content is coming to an end and they will soon be able to choose what they want to watch and do it without censorship from their cautious parents.
Well, if you are a big horror and Halloween fan like myself, then this is a great day! Now the days of escaping your family and crawling into some dangerous hole to get your slasher film fix is over. You can now add scary movies to your list of pumpkin carving, trick or treating and haunted parties this Halloween. But the problem is… What movie do I pick to show my newly impressionable horror fan? You don’t want to pick something too scary and damage your little one. Also you don’t want to pick something too lame and lose the new respect they should have for this genre.
Well, need not worry no more because I have compiled a great list of Horror films that are appropriate for the younger teen. Films you can watch together that are scary but appropriate for their age, with parental guidance of course. I will list a new one each day, counting down to Halloween. I will also explain why I chose them. In conclusion, these films will gradually introduce your teen to the horror genre, without scaring them away but also without boring the life out of them.
So, Movie #1… I choose… “Gremlins!”
Now this is a great introduction to the horror genre for a few reasons.
Reason #1– it’s PG rated. No naked chicks, no excessive gore and a nice element of playful scenes that entertain the younger viewer.
Reason #2– it takes place on Christmas. I know it’s Halloween but this film takes place on a friendlier, less threatening Holiday. I think that helps the more skittish viewers from running away at the first sign of scariness.
Reason #3– it’s directed by Spielberg. Now, if there is a director out there who knows how to talk to a family audience, but still scares the crap out of you, it’s Spielberg! This man knows how to make a scary film that will entertain the whole family, well from 13 and up at least. Actually, a lot of Spielberg films are great to start your young adults off with. We will be visiting Spielberg once again, but it will be a film you probably didn’t think he had a hand in and was also directed by one of my favorite horror movie directors of all time!!! Got you thinking, didn’t I?
Reason #4– the Gremlins are scary but have a comical element to them. Instead of having a horror movie that has the worst, heartless villain you can imagine; Gremlins are devious, mean little creatures that like to have fun also. Just when it gets too intense for the young viewer, Spielberg always puts some comic relief, funny scenes and comical elements to relax the audience. He also uses these breathers to build tension because you don’t know when it’s going to get scary next. Lets face it, the man’s a genius!
The Last Reason#5– the movie’s simple. Just like Spielberg’s film “Goonies,” “Gremlins” is simple, easy to follow, fun and fully entertaining! One of the biggest hurdles for a parent when it comes to educating your kids on film is keeping their interest. You have to think like them. They get bored easily. A movie you love and adore they may not be ready for. It could be the best film in the world but if your kid isn’t old enough to understand it, then you are going to lose his/her interest right away. You do not want to do this to your precious horror genre because he/she may not want to watch another horror movie again. Now, that’s a nightmare I never want to experience!!! Wake me up quickly, please!!!
So set up the living room with pumpkins, candle operas and cobwebs. Make some creepy treats to snack on, turn off the lights and get ready for some scary fun. “Gremlins” is campy, exciting and most of all it can be scary, especially to the younger viewer. When the movie is done, treats have been devoured and the candles are melted to their bases, your teen will be eagerly wondering what’s next on your list of creepy Halloween films!!!
Tune in tomorrow for film #2 of “HALLOWEEN MOVIES FOR YOU AND YOUR TEEN!!!”
And please don’t forget to come and watch “Out of Place” the 1st episode of a series I wrote and directed called “A Seat on a Train.” If you love the Twilight Zone then come take “A Seat on a Train” at http://www.aseatonatrain.com