Film Review: 9 Non-Scary Halloween Films

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Non-scary Halloween films
Regular readers of Popcorn and Glitter will know that I'm a huge fan of horror. However, I appreciate that not everyone shares my passion for blood, guts and gore. That in mind, I thought I'd put together a list of non-scary films for you scaredy cats out there who still want to join in on the Halloween fun...

Gremlins II the new batch
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It's been just a few weeks since the events of 1984 and Gizmo is back, this time finding himself in a high-tech business skyscraper in New York. Despite having found his way back to old pal, Billy Peltzer (Zach Galligan), Gizmo finds himself part of a series of unfortunate events resulting in the tower being overrun with Gremlins who wreak havoc on it's employees.

I mentioned in a recent blog post that I had attended a special screening of Gremlins II to celebrate the Blu-Ray release. Watching it back, I had forgotten just how amazingly hilarious this film is and remembered why I loved it so much as a kid. I personally think it's even more enjoyable as an adult and has some fantastic cameos from former WWE star, Hulk Hogan, and of course, legendary Hammer horror actor, Christopher Lee.

Jim Carrey in Once Bitten
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At 400 years old, The Countess (Lauren Hutton) has managed to keep her youthful looks by drinking the blood of virgin males in the build up to Halloween. Finding it difficult to lure in prey, she is thrilled when she meets Mark (Jim Carrey) - a naive young high school student. Although he has a girlfriend, Mark is desperate to lose his virginity and the Countess is able to lure him away from a singles bar. However, his girlfriend Robin (Karen Kopins) fights back and is in a race against time to save Mark from the clutches of the evil vampire woman. 

The first time I saw this movie, I wondered why Robin bothered to fight for Mark given he nearly cheats on her with a vampire. Of course, if you can suspend disbelief and take this film with a pinch of salt, it makes for painfully amusing 80's viewing. Created by the same director who brought us Mork and Mindy, Once Bitten was always set to be a cult comedy horror. This is Jim Carrey's seventh lead role and he is fantastic in it. 

Uncle Fester and Debbie in Addams Family Values
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The Addams Family returns and Gomez Addams (Raul Julia) and Morticia (Anjelica Huston), are celebrating the arrival of a baby boy. However, their children Wednesday (Christina Ricci) and Pugsley (Jimmy Workman) aren't too pleased about their new brother and, having tried to eliminate him, find themselves having to deal with a nanny - Debbie Jelinsky (Joan Cusack). However Debbie is about to turns their lives upside down when she seduces Uncle Fester and sets out to take the family's fortune. 

Addams Family Values remains one of my all time favourite childhood films and I remember watching it near enough on repeat. Again, it only gets better with age and not only is it hilarious with an all star cast, but it sees Joan Cusack in one of her greatest roles to date. Not to mention all the amazing costumes in it. 

Meryl Streep and Goldie Hawn in Death Becomes Her
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Helen (Goldie Hawn) has a breakdown when her fiancee, Ernest (Bruce Willis), leaves her for a famous movie star and ex-best friend, Madeline Ashton (Meryl Streep). Obsessed with the women who has betrayed her, she becomes overweight and deeply depressed - plotting her revenge. Years later and looking incredible, Helen decides to confront the now miserable couple but Madeline wants in on her beauty secret.  

Both Meryl Streep and Goldie Hawn slay as leads in this classic black comedy. Besides the incredible outfits and overall style of the film, there's a whole host of reasons why Death Becomes Her is so great. Directed by Back to the Future director, Robert Zemeckis, it has an almighty soundtrack, fabulous script and some excellent special effects for it's time. Bruce Willis proves yet again that he is an amazingly talented comedy actor and, if you haven't seen it already, you are missing out. 

Beetlejuice and Lydia Deetz
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After young newly weds Barbara (Geena Davis) and Adam (Alec Baldwin) tragically die in a car accident, they are forced to haunt the new residents of their home in the hopes that they will leave them in peace. Having unsuccessfully scared the new family and their teen daughter Lydia (Winona Ryder), the couple hire an intolerable spirit by the name of Beetlejuice (Michael Keaton) who spirals out of control. 

Surely everyone has seen this by now? No doubt this film has inspired countless Halloween costumes since it's release but for me, this remains one of Tim Burton's greatest successes. Michael Keaton is outstanding as Beetlejuice and, as for Winona Ryder, this film made her a star and rightfully so. If you're looking for a dark, cult classic to enjoy this Halloween night - this is it. 

Leslie Nielsen in Dead and Loving It
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Having been chased out of his Transylvanian castle by angry villagers, Count Dracula (Leslie Nielsen) decides to relocate to Victorian London in search of new victims. Having blended in to British high society, he finds new blood in Mina (Amy Yasbeck) and her best friend, Lucy (Lysette Anthony). However, once bitten, the pair's odd behaviour sparks the attention of their families and famous vampire hunter, Van Helsing (Mel Brooks).

I remember watching this film over and over as a child as I just thought it was just so balmy. Written and directed by legendary comedian Mel Brooks and starring Leslie Nielsen, Dead and Loving It is the equivalent of Airplane (Jim Abrahams, 1980) or Space Balls (Mel Brooks, 1987) for Halloween and horror lovers. Utterly silly and filled with endless play-on words and puns, this will always be entertaining - it's a classic. 

Tom Hanks The 'Burbs
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Ray Peterson (Tom Hanks) becomes increasingly alarmed when a suspiciously odd family move in down the street of their suburban neighbourhood. When one of their neighbours mysteriously disappears, Ray recruits two of his friends to help investigate and save their once quiet street from the clutches of evil.

There are few things in this world I love more than a young Tom Hanks. Throw in a cheesy 80's script, a young Corey Feldman, Bruce Dern and Carrie Fisher and you've got yourself an absolute classic. Complete with awful special effects and neon-lit sets, you may not be in for much of a scare but hopefully you'll love this dark comedy. 

Hocus Pocus
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Set in Salem, a high school student, Max Dennison (Omri Katz), accidentally frees a coven of evil witches (Bette Midler, Sarah Jessica Parker, Kathy Najimy) whilst exploring a haunted house. Back from the dead and preying on the souls of Salem children, Max, along side his little sister, friend Alison (Vinessa Shaw) and a magic talking cat, must use the witches' book of spells to send the witches back before they can become immortal.

Now it just wouldn't be Halloween without Disney classic, Hocus Pocus. This is one of my favourite ever roles for Bette Milder and whilst it appears to have aged a little over the years, it's still so much fun. No description I could write will ever so it justice but I'm sure it'll be showing on TV over the Halloween weekend. 

The Ghostbusters 1984
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A team of scientists (Harold Ramis, Dan Aykroyd, Bill Murray) lose their cushy positions at a university for their opinions of paranormal activity. Down on their luck, they decide to band together to form the Ghostbusters. Waging war on the supernatural of New York City, they stumble upon a gateway to another dimension which unleashes a destructive evil upon the city. Armed with knowledge and custom-made proton packs, the Ghostbusters must fight to save the day.

It feels like such a shame that when I googled this film, the 2016 remake appeared in it's rightful place. For me, Ghostbusters remains one of the greatest 80's or even just comedy films to date. Packed full of nostalgia and written by the incredible Dan Ackroyd, it is such an interesting film to study. I could talk about it for days - if you haven't seen the original, what have you been doing with yourself? It's a million times better than the new one and beyond compare. 
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Well, that's it for another film list. Looking back through it, there's definitely an accidental pattern of mid-eighties to early nineties which just goes to show they really don't make films like that anymore. So tell me, what are your favourite non-scary movies? Do you have a  favourite Halloween film collection? As always, I love reading your thoughts so please do leave me lots of lovely comments down below.

Until next time ghouls and gals,



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18 comments:

  1. I already mentioned this on Twitter, but this is a great list! Some of my favorite Halloween movies are here, and then a few I haven't actually seen.

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  2. Adams family used to be my favourite, haven't seen it in a long time! Will re-watch!
    Pam xo/ Pam Scalfi♥

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    1. Yeah I love rewatching films from when I was a kid - I love seeing bits that I completely missed the first time round :) x

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  3. Hocus-pocus is such a great one think I definitely will rewatch it

    Beauty Candy Loves

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  4. I haven't seen the Dracula or Tom Hanks ones. My favorite Mel Brooks film is Young Frankenstein (1974) and I also like Rocky Horror Picture Show (1975) for this category. I really liked your earlier recommendation of Housebound (2014) which might fit the category because the dark comedy in it is so good :)

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    1. Yeah Young Frankenstein is a classic although Rocky Horror Picture Show isn't quite tame enough for this list. It's a great one though. Yeah again, Housebound is an amazing film but there are some scary bits in it. This list is just for films which aren't scary/gorey at all :)

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  5. Absolutely love all these films. Definitely need to watch one of them this weekend. Hope you have a nice day.

    Gemma x
    www.jacquardflower.uk

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  6. Hocus Pocus is one of my all time favorites, since I was little! It's just so good! I will be watching that on Halloween along with some scares! So excited! I had to walk back from the shop with four pumpkins! I was dying! I had to keep stopping lol! Anything for halloween!

    Fix Me In Forty Five - A Beauty & Lifestyle Blog
    Blog Lovin' // Instagram
    xx

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    1. Ugh I know - you can tell that it was totally some inspo for American Horror Story too! I can't remember whether it scared me when I was little but there are a few bits in there haha. Haha omg that's amazing - are you going to decorate them? xx

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    2. Yeah! I will carve them all and then light them. Might buy more so they have babies haha! God my flat is going to smell in a few days lol!
      xx

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    3. Aw amazing!! Make sure you take photos, I'd love to see them! Haha omg I love that idea - I've got 2 tiny ones and 2 medium sized ones but haven't caved them up or anything. So worth it! x

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  7. The Addams family/values, Hocus Pocus (watch it every Halloween), Beetlejuice (only saw it a couple of years ago) and Dracula dead and loving it are all my favourites. Death becomes her is good but drags a bit for me

    https://matchamilady.wordpress.com/

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    1. Yeah I noticed that Addams Family Values and Hocus Pocus were both on TV last night which was awesome. Classics :) x

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  8. This is such a great list Sophie! Some of my all time favorites right here. I must rewatch some of them although I have never seen the Burbs before but I love young Tom Hanks. Hope you had a wonderful Halloween!

    Ashley ox
    http://www.imamovienerd.wordpress.com

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    1. Thanks Ashley :) Aw in that case you'll love it - it's very silly but a classic x

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