Today I want to share with you my 5 favourite PG-13 horror movies. If a spooky film has a rating lower than an M, it generally means the scares are devoid of gore and coarse language. I strongly believe that a motion picture requiring parental guidance can be just as effective in disturbing viewers as those rated R. You don’t need blood, guts and extreme brutality to give somebody the creeps. In fact, you may find yourself surprised by my list. Yes, these are only classified as PG-13. Without further ado, let’s get into it!
1.) The Grudge
I adore The Grudge. I will be ranking the franchise in 2022, so stay tuned for that. The first film in the series is rated PG-13. There is no gore, strong language or adult themes. However, it is very scary. In this movie, a curse is born when somebody dies under sorrowful or angry circumstances. Those who encounter this supernatural force are killed, and the curse is reborn repeatedly, passing from victim to victim in an endless, growing chain of horror. In 2001, we witness a tragic event occur in a Japanese home. Flash forward to 2004, where the residual negative energy continues to infect anybody that enters the house. The best scenes are the iconic shower/hands in the hair moment and the ending, where Kayako crawls down the stairs. Parental guidance may be advised but I think the kiddies should wait a bit longer to watch this one…
2.) The Sixth Sense
This is the first horror movie I ever watched. I was 13 and it was played at my school camp. Technically, the teachers adhered to the rating system…but I was still traumatised. Years later, I revisited The Sixth Sense and saw it for the masterpiece it was. I don’t think it’s a spoiler to mention the iconic line: “I see dead people.” At the time, that twist blew people’s minds, but now I see how obvious everything was. This story follows a boy haunted by spirits. Bruce Willis, a psychologist, befriends the child and tries to help him channel his gift in a positive way. This may be PG-13 but damn it’s disturbing. You see a lot of disfigured ghosts, including a vomiting girl poisoned by her mother. It’s also claustrophobic in the sense that the boy is constantly harassed by the dead. He cannot go anywhere without witnessing them. I recommend not showing this one to your pre-teens.
3.) The Ring
Ugh! One of my favourite horror movies of all time. I will definitely be ranking this franchise next year. It’s so hard to believe The Ring is rated PG-13, but it is. For one thing, you never actually see Samara kill anybody…just their distorted faces afterwards. There isn’t any gore or truly bloody scenes. In this film, a cursed video kills a person who watches it in seven days. After an unseen force claims the life of Rachel Keller’s (Naomi Watts) niece, she decides to investigate the evil phenomenon behind the tape. Rachel soon learns that there is a lot more to the story than just a possessed child. It’s heartbreaking and utterly terrifying at the same time. Not for the youngsters!
4.) The Others
Now, this is an excellent horror movie. Similar to The Sixth Sense, The Others also has a fantastic twist. Grace (Nicole Kidman), is the devoutly religious mother of Anne and Nicholas. She moves her family to the English coast during World War II, awaiting word on her missing husband, whilst protecting her children from a rare photo-sensitivity disease, that causes the sun to harm them. When Anne claims to sees ghosts, Grace initially thinks the new servants are playing tricks, but chilling events and visions begin to make her believe something supernatural has occurred. The scares in this film are mainly centered on paranormal activity. You won’t witness anything gruesome or intense. This is the first flick on my list that I would actually recommend kids watch with their parents.
5.) What Lies Beneath
After watching What Lies Beneath, I was amused to read reviews from parents complaining about the rating. To be fair, this film does include sexual references, some violence and coarse language, but it’s nothing extreme. In my opinion, the true horror stems from the shocking reveal. With their only daughter in college, the loving couple: Dr. Norman Spencer and Claire, a former cellist, retreat in picturesque Vermont to live a tranquil life at their serene and isolated lake house. However, their idyllic marriage starts falling to pieces when sensitive Claire becomes convinced that a supernatural entity has occupied their vacant home. There is a lot of gas-lighting and manipulation, so be warned of that. I can’t see many teenagers being interested in this one (due to the more mature themes) but I love it. It’s very underrated.
I hope you enjoyed this post. What are some of your favourite PG-13 horror movies? Do you agree with my list? Thanks for reading!
Peace & Love xoxo