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The 10 best Disney Halloween movies of all time

Our list of the best Disney Halloween movies proves that when the spooky season begins, the House of Mouse brings out their bad apples.

Best Disney Halloween movies

What are the best Disney Halloween movies? While the House of Mouse is known for its happy-go-lucky family adventures and beloved cuddly characters, make no mistake — come October, things change up quite a bit.

In fact, around Halloween, Disney ditches the quirky family movies for some of the best horror movies in their arsenal, and with the help of some pretty scary soundtracks and nasty villains, there’s no doubt that the studio puts out some of the best scary movies for kids. Here, we’ve picked the best of them all.

The 10 best Disney Halloween movies of all time:

  1. The Adventures of Ichabod and Mr Toad
  2. Don’t Look Under the Bed
  3. Mom’s Got a Date with a Vampire
  4. The Haunted Mansion
  5. The Black Cauldron
  6. Twitches
  7. Halloweentown
  8. Hocus Pocus
  9. Frankenweenie
  10. The Nightmare Before Christmas

Best Disney Halloween movies: Adventures of Ichabod

10. The Adventures of Ichabod and Mr Toad (1949)

Disney has a long history as a studio, and one of its most unsettling cartoons to date comes from the 1940s. The Adventures of Ichabod and Mr Toad is an anthology movie that adapts two stories: The Wind and the Willows by Kenneth Grahame and “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow” by Washington Irving. The section featuring The Legend of Sleepy Hollow is particularly spooky and still gives us chills to this day.

Set in October 1790, Ichabod Crane arrives in a town that is soon revealed to be haunted by the ghost of a headless horseman. The short story is filled with chase scenes, eerie backgrounds, and a creepy soundscape to boot. Truly a terrifying family film for those brave enough to watch it.

Best Disney Halloween movies: Don't Look Under the Bed

9. Don’t Look Under the Bed (1999)

If you haven’t noticed already, when it comes to Disney and Halloween, ’90s movies dominate the rankings in terms of quality and scares. Which brings us to perhaps one of the most terrifying entries on our list: Don’t Look Under the Bed.

The Boogeyman is the order of the day in this film, with strange things in the town of Middleberg occurring that all seem to link back to teenage girl Frances. With the help of the imaginary friend Larry Houdini, Frances tries to stop the monster that haunts her.

Don’t Look Under the Bed plays on childhood fears and even offers some body horror movie tropes once we learn how Boogeymen are made in this world. It’s a great time but be warned; you may have a few nightmares once the credits begin to roll on this one.

Best Disney Halloween movies: Mom's Got a Date with a Vampire

8. Mom’s Got a Date with a Vampire (2000)

The House of Mouse has given us plenty of ghoulish films over the years, but in 2000 it gave us the vampire movie about the not-so-fun side of being single in a world where supernatural beings exist. Some meddling siblings decide that, in order to avoid being grounded, it’s time to set their mom up on a date…the only problem is that said date happens to be a bloodsucker named Dimitri.

The kids must work together to save their mom from their own schemes. The film is full of hijinks, and laughs and puts a spin on the monster movie genre with its tongue-in-cheek family-style approach. A feel-good movie, if there ever was one for Halloween night.

Best Disney Halloween movies: The Haunted Mansion

7. The Haunted Mansion (2003)

A ghost movie that too often gets a bad rap, The Haunted Mansion is one of the best Disney Halloween movies to this day – no matter what other critics say. Starring the likes of Eddie Murphy and Terence Stamp, the comedy movie (based on the Disneyland amusement park ride of the same name) is colorful, eerie and a fun family pick for Halloween night.

A muted gothic horror suitable for all ages, it tells the story of a realtor who gets trapped inside a haunted mansion along with his family. Soon a scheme involving specters, lost love, and even murder comes knocking…what more could you want?

The Haunted Mansion has long survived its initial harsh reviews and often appears on best-of lists for Halloween movies, and with a reboot that failed to live up to the fun of the original, you know this Eddie Murphy gem had to be on the list.

Best Disney Halloween movies: The Black Cauldron

6. The Black Cauldron (1985)

The Black Cauldron is often unfairly forgotten when it comes to Disney animated movies, but don’t let its box-office past fool you – it’s a killer pick come Halloween night. The Horned King seeks to rule the world, and to succeed in his plans needs the help of a dark magical cauldron. Unfortunately for the big baddie, a band of heroes set out to destroy the artifact before he can begin his world domination scheme.

Back when it was first released, The Black Cauldron bombed, with many criticizing its dark aesthetics for a kids movie. But in recent years, the film has gathered a cult following and for a good reason. The medieval world is delightfully spooky and post-apocalyptic, and the entire adventure is captivating. So what are you waiting for? Time to give The Black Cauldron a go this Halloween season!

Best Disney Halloween movies: Twitches

5. Twitches (2005)

Who didn’t want to be a witch when they were kids? If you had Disney Channel, chances are that you remember Twitches – because, yes, it was just that good. Based on the Twitches book series by H. B. Gilmour and Randi Reisfeld, the film is a joy to watch (and rewatch) every year.

Twin Witches, originally from the magical dimension of Coventry, are born on Halloween night and are immediately separated. The two grow up on Earth alone but reconnect on their 21st birthday and must work together to fulfill a prophecy and vanquish Darkness in their birthplace.

Twitches has it all, comedy and magic, making it a top-tier choice when it comes to Disney Halloween movies. It’s a YA dream and is a great lighthearted alternative to other heavier witch movies for the whole family.

Best Disney Halloween movies: Halloweentown

4. Halloweentown (1998)

Halloweentown is another classic Disney Channel movie that would broadcast every year come the scary holiday. However, even though it was played on repeat, it remains a great addition to your fall Disney movie marathon. Halloweentown is the first out of the film series and centers on a young woman named Marnie.

On her 13th birthday, Marnie discovers she’s a witch and gains access to a portal that transports her to the magically spooky world of Halloweentown. The new land is filled with all the classic monsters: werewolves, ghosts and plenty of ghouls.

But this delightful little town isn’t exactly peaceful, as Marnie soon finds herself battling warlocks and evil curses too. Halloweentown is prime fantastical escapism on a plate, and honestly, we can’t recommend it highly enough.

Best Disney Halloween movies: Hocus Pocus

3. Hocus Pocus (1993)

Sissssssttaaaas! When it comes to Halloween classics, few Disney movies beat the ’90s witch film Hocus Pocus. From its charming story, songs, and comedic acting, it is a sure-fire smash hit come spooky season. Three 300-year-old witches—the Sanderson sisters – are resurrected one Halloween night, and it is up to a group of young kids to save their town and friends from the clutches of the devious magic users.

Bette Midler, Sarah Jessica Parker, and Kathy Najimy are the perfect witchy trio, and nothing beats watching them navigate the modern world with hilarious results. Hocus Pocus is a cult classic for a reason and has aged like fine wine. It should also be mentioned that Hocus Pocus 2 is out on Disney Plus, so it is time for a fall rewatch!

Best Disney Halloween movies: Frakenweenie

2. Frankenweenie (2012)

When it comes to kid-friendly monster movies, Tim Burton’s animated movie Frankenweenie is a clear winner. Combining Frankenstein with Lassie, a young boy’s dearly departed dog Sparky gets a second shot at life. The black and white film is filled with callbacks and parodies to the horror genre and has all the elements of a classic Tim Burton movie, oozing with style and plenty of dark fantasy elements.

If you’re after a Disney Halloween movie that feels like a fresh family take on classic 1950s horror movies, then this is one you won’t want to miss come your movie night.

Best Disney Halloween movies: The Nightmare Before Christmas

1. The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993)

While it could be argued that the animated movie The Nightmare Before Christmas is more of a Christmas movie than a Halloween one (given how the majority of the story is set in a land called Halloween Town and that the protagonist is a charismatic skeleton), this film has rightfully earned its spot on our list.

The story follows the spooky residents of Halloween Town taking over Christmas and putting a creepy spin on the festive holiday. The film is an all-year-round delight, featuring some stunning stop-motion animation and lovable characters.

But if you’re like us and hate to see Christmas decorations go up in stores before Halloween is over, this film is also filled with plenty of spooky payback and Santa Claus kidnappings which hit the spot and offer some sweet holiday revenge.

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To see what else Disney has to offer, you can also check out our guide to everything new on Disney Plus. We’ve also got a list of the best Disney villains, so you can see who else is up to no good.

What’s more, we’ve got a breakdown of the best movies ever made, and all the new movies coming if you’d like to know what to watch when Halloween is said and done.