Family Movie Night

Because of deadlines, the time I write this column is always about a half a week from the time you will read it. So what is foremost in my head is the wonderful concert I went to that featured the high school and grade school bands, performing three numbers separately and together for two numbers.

Picture by Puddleduck

Those of us with children or grandchildren in the grade school band know the excellent program Mr. Smith has created. This was my first concert at the high school and I was very impressed with Mr. Mayden’s work. The second number, Lux Aurumque by Eric Whitacre, was a difficult tune. It seemed to me there would be times that your instrument would sound slightly off when you were doing the correct notes. The students rallied and kept going even when it seemed impossible. It had an eerie yet beautiful quality to it.

So perfect for the season.

One thing that is always troubling about this season is what movies should one watch with the little ones. I mean, I am not showing my kindergartener or 4th grader Halloween or Saw or any number of scary movies that feature blood and gore. But they do make the request for scary movies.

One friend told me her younger daughter stated she was excited to see the scary movies, the ones featured on Disney Channel. That is really the route to go. Plus, there are a few movies that were in theaters only a few years ago that are truly scary and appropriate for the younger crowd. These are what I call the “family friendly scary movies.”

Scooby Doo and the Gang from the live action movie series. Picture from

One of my go-to-scary-movies for kids is anything “Scooby Doo.” I find these movies can be a little scary with Shaggy and Scoob leading the way to shaking in your boots. Thelma, Fred and Daphne show us how the monsters and ghosts are fake. In the few instances when they are not, the gang also displays how to think fast to save the day. Their cunning always wins out over greed.

One spooky movie for the youngest of age groups is The Little Vampire starring Jonathon Lipnicki back when he was a cute little boy. He discovers a family of vampires has moved into his neighborhood when he meets the boy who is his age. The trick becomes figuring out how to save the family. Well, we know kids can do miraculous things if given a chance and this is a cute movie with only small scares to it.

Monster House poster, Picture from

Another movie I would go with is Monster House. The story is about three pre-teens who discover the haunted house on the block does more than just sit there, especially if it thinks someone might try to damage the house. This PG rated flick is perhaps best for 8 years and up. It has some beautiful animation and I enjoy the characters, even more so once I discovered that Mitchel Musso from Hannah Montana plays the best friend.

Have a safe and happy Halloween this weekend!

Until next week, see you in the rental aisle.

Let the world know about your latest pick for Family Movie Night and drop a note below.