With Halloween less than two weeks away, it’s finally time to binge-watch spooky movies. If you’re ready to get in the Halloween spirit but aren’t a fan of jump scares and crazy clowns, here are The Daily Texan’s recommendations for some not-so-scary Halloween movies.
Hocus Pocus (1993)
A Halloween classic, “Hocus Pocus” has been a family favorite since its release in 1993. The movie follows three witches (Bette Midler, Sarah Jessica Parker, Kathy Najimy) in Salem, Massachusetts, who are trying to get back their magic book of spells to stay immortal. Filled with comedy, drama and romance, this iconic movie is perfect for those who like magic and witches but aren’t ready to fully commit to the horror genre. “Hocus Pocus” can be rented on Amazon Prime for $2.99.
Twitches (2005, 2007)
“Twitches” and “Twitches Too” star Disney icons Tia and Tamera Mowry (“Sister Sister”). The plot follows two identical twins who meet for the first time in a chance encounter on their 21st birthday, which is also Halloween. The girls embark on a whirlwind day of discovering their powers and joining together to stop the forces of darkness. A childhood favorite of many, this film and its sequel center more on spellbinding family issues than darkness itself. Both movies are available to watch for free on the DisneyNOW app.
Practical Magic (1998)
This late ‘90s film follows sisters Sally (Sandra Bullock) and Gillian Owens (Nicole Kidman). Born with witching powers, the two sisters tend to stay away from their magical roots until Gillian’s drunken boyfriend ends up dead and the sisters try to revive him. Scrambling to bring him back with their out-of-practice powers, the sisters accidentally release an evil spirit. This romantic comedy is full of feel-good scenes, with a central theme surrounding the importance of family and the bond between sisters. “Practical Magic” is available to rent on Amazon Prime for $3.99.
Halloweentown (1998, 2001, 2004, 2006)
Another Disney classic, the “Halloweentown” series was a staple for many Halloween seasons on the Disney Channel. The first of four films in the franchise follows Marnie Piper (Kimberly J. Brown), who discovers she is part of a family of witches. She discovers Halloweentown, her grandmother’s home, where witches, warlocks and werewolves live together in harmony. A childhood icon, this film series always manages to create a sense of fall in the air, bringing nostalgia with it. “Halloweentown” is available to watch for free on the DisneyNOW app.
Sleepy Hollow (1999)
“Sleepy Hollow” is the scariest movie on the list. But if you can get past a bit of gore, “Sleepy Hollow” is perfect for those who would like to be a little creeped out, but not wake up with nightmares every night. The movie follows Ichabod Crane (Johnny Depp), a doctor sent to the little town of Sleepy Hollow, where many are turning up dead. Upon arrival, the townspeople claim the killings are at the fault of the “Headless Horseman,” a ghost terrorizing the town. Another Tim Burton production, this movie balances gore, humor and romance, three elements that are quite hard to blend. “Sleepy Hollow” is available to view for free on Philo with a subscription, or to rent on Amazon Prime for $2.99.