40 Best Scary PG-13 Horror Movies (Ranked)

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The majority of the outstanding horror films are rated R. From classics to modern successes, the horror genre flourishes when directors are free to break the rules and explore their darkest fantasies without restraint. This generally entails choosing the most visceral and graphic options that are rated-R, restricted, or require a parent or guardian for anybody under the age of 17.

If you’re seeking scary movies for kids, especially horror movies for teens classified PG-13, this is a great list to start with. Stick around as I show you the 40 best scary horror movies that are rated PG-13.

40. The Watcher in the Woods (1980)

Helen and Paul Curtis, together with their children Jan and Ellie, are an Anglo-American family that relocates into a manor. Mrs. Aylwood, the home’s owner, observes a remarkable likeness between Jan and her daughter Karen, who vanished inside a chapel in the hamlet 30 years ago.

Strange occurrences occur in the lives of young girls, which are linked to an occult incident from years ago. Their daughter Jan sees and hears the voice of a young adolescent girl who suddenly vanished decades ago during a complete solar eclipse. Jan learns about Mrs. Aylwood’s lost daughter’s mystery.

Mrs. Aylwood saves Jan when she falls into a pond while staring at a blue circle, and Jan finds a guy named John who reveals that Karen has vanished but not died.

39. The Troll Hunter (2010)

Students from Volda University (Thomas, Johanna, and videographer Kalle) decide to investigate after bears are discovered dead in Norway. They are on the lookout for the strange hunter Hans, hoping to learn more about the murders.

Hans tries to run from the kids but eventually decides to let them record him in action as long as they obey his commands. Hans is a troll hunter working for a covert government outfit, and the trio of students soon discovers this. Furthermore, many deadly trolls have fled their domain, and Hans has been tasked with putting them down.

38. Something Wicked This Way Comes (1983)

Two young boys—quiet Will Halloway and slightly rebellious Jim Nightshade—enjoy the ever-shortening days of autumn in a little town in any state in America. When a lightning rod seller tells the boys about a weird traveling carnival, they decide to go see what it’s all about—but Will is worried because usually, carnivals finish their tours after Labor Day.

The lads are both excited and scared when the frightening Mr. Black, the Illustrated Man, comes into town at dark midnight and sets up his huge carnival in a matter of seconds. The beautiful tunes of the carousel—which may change your age depending on which way you ride it—and the glaring Mirror Maze appear at first to be just another carnival, but it isn’t long until the forces of the evil show themselves.

Dark plans to take control of the town and grab more innocent souls to curse with his collection of freaks and oddities, including the Fat Man, Mr. Electro, and the blind Dust Witch.

Will’s father, the local librarian, understands better than anyone else that “something terrible this way coming,” and it will take all of the two boys’ wit and optimism to save their family and friends, with the help of an unusual ally—father, Will’s the town librarian.

37. The Dark Tower (2017)

Jake Chambers, a troubled New York youngster plagued by horrible dreams of devastation and spine-chilling visions of an evil masculine figure clothed in black, is about to find that his night terrors are real.

The destiny of the world as we know it rests in his hands when he partners up with mysterious Gunslinger Roland, while Walter, the demonic Man in Black, sets out to destroy the one thing that holds this world and the next together: the enormous Dark Tower. The odds are now stacked against the improbable guardians. Is it possible for Jake and Roland to bring the universe back to order?

36. Frankenstein (2015)

Frankenstein is a 2015 remake of Mary Shelley’s 1818 novel of the same name. Set in modern-day Los Angeles and narrated solely from the Monster’s point of view.

Adam is met with nothing but aggressiveness and violence from the world around him after he is artificially produced and then abandoned for dead by a husband-and-wife team of crazy scientists. This perfect creation-turned-disfigured monster must come to terms with humanity’s heinous nature.

35. The Unseen (2019)

Bob Longmore is afflicted with a strange ailment that causes his body to gradually fade away. He abandoned his family eight years ago when the illness first appeared, and now lives in a logging hamlet in British Columbia’s far north, isolating himself as much as possible and keeping his body properly covered whenever he does have to deal with people.

When his ex-wife Darlene calls to talk about their troubled teenage daughter Eva, he decides to return to the city, but is forced to deliver a supply of drugs to Crisby in exchange for the repair of his vehicle; the visit is complicated further when Eva vanishes shortly after his return, forcing him to juggle the drug delivery with trying to find his daughter.

34. Twilight Zone: The Movie (1983)

Four horror/science fiction pieces were directed by four of Hollywood’s most renowned directors based on one of television’s most successful anthology shows, bookended by a humorous and frightening prologue and epilogue.

In the first story, a loud-mouthed bigot with an intense hatred for Jews, blacks, and Asians has the tables turned on him when he walks out of a bar and is mysteriously transported back in time as a Nazi in 1940’s France, then as an African-American at a KKK rally in the 1950’s Deep South, and as a Vietnamese in 1960’s Vietnam.

In the second narrative, an elderly man arrives at a retirement home and miraculously turns the inhabitants into young versions of their former selves.

In the third narrative, a young lady on the road provides transportation to a strange 10-year-old kid and finds herself stuck alongside other individuals in another universe constructed by the youngster’s imagination.

The fourth narrative follows a passenger on an airline who witnesses but is unable to persuade anybody of, a weird monster on the airplane’s wing attempting to damage the aircraft.

33. Tremors (1990)

Valentine “Val” McKee and Earl Bassett find themselves diverted while attempting to leave their dead-end lives in the desert hamlet of Perfection, Nevada when bodies inexplicably begin piling up around them. When Val and Earl have an encounter with some frightening tentacled creatures that have eaten a road crew for lunch, they flee to the town to spread the word.

While these monsters are not academics, their mental abilities are nonetheless astounding. When they discover a human sheltering in a car, they dig beneath it, sinking it into the soil. Val and Earl receive assistance from several community residents.

Val and Earl slay one of the creatures with the assistance of Rhonda. However, there are three of them remaining, each around 30 feet long. Walter begins referring to the monsters as graboids.

When the survivors believe they have outwitted the graboids by seeking refuge on the rooftops of buildings, the graboids simply demolish the foundations of the structures, killing two individuals.

Graboids are quick learners when it comes to tracking their prey, and humans must always be on their toes to survive while attempting to fight the graboids.

32. What Lies Beneath (2000)

With their lone daughter in college, Dr. Norman Spencer and his wife, Claire, a former cellist, escape to their quiet and remote lake cottage in beautiful Vermont. Their perfect marriage, however, will soon unravel when delicate Claire becomes persuaded that a supernatural creature has taken up residence in their unoccupied home.

Now, whispering voices and inexplicable manifestations chilling the bone to the marrow intensify in her eyes. Could Claire’s fears be figments of her fertile imagination, or is there a terrible truth hidden deep inside Norman and Claire’s supposedly tranquil haven?

31. Scary Stories To Tell In The Dark (2019)

America is in 1968. Change is in the air…but distant from the urban upheaval is the tiny village of Mill Valley, where the Bellows family’s shadow has hung big for centuries.

Sarah, a young girl with terrible secrets, transformed her painful existence into a series of frightening stories, penned in a time-traveling book—stories that become all too true for a group of teens who uncover Sarah’s horrific tomb.

RELATED: 50 Best Psychological Horror Movies

30. Warm Bodies (2013)

R is a young and strangely introspective zombie in a world where the majority of the people have become an undead horde. R encounters Julie and feels compelled to defend her while battling and feasting on a human scavenger party.

What follows is the start of an oddly pleasant friendship that enables R to reclaim his humanity. As this shift spreads like a virus among the local zombie population, Julie and R are forced to confront a deeper issue when the entire essence of their friendship is called into question.

Caught between paranoid human forces and the savage “Bonies,” zombies that pose a mutual danger, R and Julie must overcome their respective factions’ divisions to fight for a better future no one imagined conceivable.

29. Signs (2002)

Graham Hess, a former Episcopal priest who has lost his religious faith in the aftermath of his wife’s tragic automobile accident, retires to a rural farm surrounded by maize in Pennsylvania with his two young daughters and younger brother.

Six months later, a terrible undercurrent of dread begins to sweep through the family as inexplicable crop-circle formations begin to develop on his field, and the same circular patterns begin to spread around the planet.

As increasingly inexplicable events occur, sorrow and denial combine with paranoia, creating a potentially combustible cocktail. Is this a sophisticated prank, a foreboding warning from above, or is this the end of the world as we know it?

28. The Mothman Prophecies (2002)

John Klein and his wife are engaged in a vehicle accident, but while he is unhurt, his wife reports seeing a moth-shaped entity. Following her demise, John investigates the mysteries surrounding the aforementioned Mothman.

It leads him to Point Pleasant, West Virginia, a little hamlet where he discovers a connection to the same problem. He encounters Connie Mills here as he continues to decipher the Mothman’s true identity.

27. The Woman In Black (2012)

Arthur Kipps, a London solicitor, is assigned to the village of Crythin Gifford to evaluate the dead Mrs. Drablow’s documents. Arthur has not had a great career – at least in part – because he is still grieving the death of his wife four years ago while giving birth to their son Joseph. Crythin Gifford is a desolate community with unwelcoming inhabitants.

Arthur discovers that no one in the town is overjoyed about his new job at the Eel Marsh mansion. He quickly discovers that the house is haunted by the Mother in Black, the spirit of a woman whose son perished in a nearby swamp. Whenever she arrives, a village kid perishes.

26. The Last Exorcism (2010)

Still doubting God, Reverend Cotton Marcus, a once-pious pastor, no longer believes in what he preaches. To demonstrate that the purifying procedures dubbed “exorcisms” are nothing more than elaborate frauds, Marcus invites a documentary film team to capture his final exorcism.

Soon, the distraught farmer Louis Sweetzer’s urgent request for assistance will give the ideal chance to clear the air, as he believes that malicious spirits have taken control of his little daughter, Nell.

Naturally, the rehearsed performance succeeds; but, that same night, obvious supernatural occurrences begin to undermine the priest’s skepticism. Could it be that Nell has been possessed by a dark demon?

25. Devil (2010)

Five strangers board the same elevator vehicle in a downtown Philadelphia high-rise business skyscraper. They are all irritated as the elevator jerks to a halt between levels. They rapidly become irritated with one another – one does not like the term “senile” and another claims to suffer from claustrophobia – but when the lights go out and one of the five is murdered, everything changes dramatically.

Det. Bowden is the officer in charge of the investigation, a recovering alcoholic who has failed to overcome his grief over the death of his wife and kid in a car accident. As people perish one by one, rescuers scramble to get entry to the elevator vehicle. However, one of the high-rise security guards is sure that it is all the Devil’s doing.

24. The Possession (2012)

Clyde and his two daughters, Emily and Hannah, make a quick stop at a yard sale on their way to spend the weekend at their new house. There, Emily notices an antique wooden box and quickly discovers a means to uncover its intriguing contents.

As a result, the normally normal ten-year-old girl’s behavior becomes progressively erratic, as she develops a morbid attachment to the ancient carved box. Now, as the terrible entity’s grasp on the container tightens, Clyde must do everything he can to aid Emily before the evil spreads. However, is he capable of confronting the demonic possession?

23. The Final Girls (2015)

Max and her pals are unintentionally drawn into the silver screen when they attend a tribute showing of an iconic ’80s horror film starring Max’s late mother. They quickly learn they are imprisoned inside the cult classic film and must band together with the film’s fictitious and doomed “Camp Bloodbath” counselors, including Max’s mother in the role of the shy scream queen, to take on the film’s machete-wielding, masked murderer.

With the corpse count mounting in a classic moment after iconic scene, who will survive as THE FINAL GIRLS?

22. The Grudge (2004)

After Yoko fails to report to work, Karen Davis, an exchange nurse student from the United States now residing in Tokyo, is requested to check on Emma, an American woman who recently relocated to Japan with her son, daughter, and daughter-in-law Jennifer. Karen is worried by Emma’s strange conduct while inside the house: she is silent and sleeps through the day.

Karen quickly learns that the home is plagued by a curse that will devour anybody who enters. Now, following many heinous killings, she finds herself in a race against time, as she, too, is devoured by The Grudge…

21. The Sixth Sense (1999)

To clear the slate and earn a second chance following that soul-scarring tragedy a year ago, Dr. Malcolm Crowe, a Philadelphia child psychologist, chooses to take on his first new case—the severely troubled eight-year-old Cole Sear.

Cole takes a step further by gravely stating he possesses the gift, or curse, of a rare and unwanted sixth sense; the inexplicable ability to see the awful and unquiet specters of the departed who linger on this world.

However, can a gradually rehabilitating skeptic trust, let alone cure, a desperate soul pleading for assistance? And what if Cole’s frighteningly recurrent visions are not figments of a wounded fancy, but an unfalsifiable reality?

20. Poltergeist (1982)

The Freeling family’s life is idyllic until a slew of unearthly entities attacks their tranquil suburban house. It begins with a few strange occurrences, but their home quickly transforms into a whirling otherworldly carnival. The forces at work are far from benign, and if the unfortunate Freelings do not flee quickly, they will all be swept away into horrific turmoil!

19. Split (2016)

In broad daylight, during an innocent birthday celebration at a mall, Casey, Claire, and Marcia, three naive art-class classmates, fall victim to the creepy predator Kevin Wendell Crumb, a broken man suffering from Dissociative Identity Disorder.

Kevin is home to not one, but twenty-three different and suppressed personas; yet, within the swarm, certain identities are necessarily more evil than others.

Eventually, the elusive 24th “Beast” identity will manifest in all its splendor, as a synthesis of Kevin’s characteristics and the pinnacle of human progress. Is the dreaded creature contained therein, however, real, or is it a product of Crumb’s morbidly deranged imagination?

18. Cloverfield (2008)

A recording is discovered in the former Central Park by the US Defense Department. The film depicts a group of friends throwing a surprise farewell party at Rob Hawkins’ Lower Manhattan apartment.

Rob is a young man leaving New York for Japan to work, and his pal Hud is recording messages from his buddies. They are taken aback by an earthquake and learn via the news that a ship has capsized in the harbor area.

They proceed to the penthouse to watch the disaster and observe explosions everywhere; when the building’s power goes out, they flee to the streets to avoid being attacked by the monster.

17. The Birds (1963)

Melanie Daniels, a spoiled socialite, and the infamous practical joker is shopping at a San Francisco pet store when she encounters Mitch Brenner, who is trying to purchase a pair of love birds for his little sister’s birthday; he remembers Melanie but misidentifies her as an assistant.

She resolves to get revenge by purchasing the birds and traveling up to the peaceful coastal town of Bodega Bay, where Mitch spends his weekends with his sister and mother. Melanie gets attacked by a gull shortly after she arrives, but this is only the beginning of a series of attacks by an increasing number of birds.

16. Arachnaphobia (1990)

Two strange things occur: the photographer’s body is returned home with a lethal south American spider hidden inside the coffin, and a doctor with a fatal fear of spiders relocates to the same tiny town.

The spider reproduces, putting the entire community at risk unless the doctor can determine that the spate of deaths is being caused by the baby spiders and convince the authorities in a peaceful small town to act before his own house and family are overrun.

15. Happy Death Day (2017)

After a night of excessive drinking and intense partying, Tree Gelbman, a self-centered college student and sorority sister, awakens with a severe hangover on the morning of her birthday in the dorm of a boy whose name she can’t recall.

As Tree goes about her day, she has no idea that everything that has happened or will happen during the day is a warped déjà vu of a reality that repeats itself until her violent death at the hands of a masked maniac at night.

With each repetition—or, better yet, resurrection—Tree comes a little closer to identifying her assailant; yet, determining who he or she may be invariable results in Tree’s death. Awaken; ascertain the identity of the assailant; die; repeat. After all, repetition is the mother of invention.

14. Mama (2013)

Five years after their parents’ sad deaths, close sisters Victoria and Lily find themselves suddenly reunited with their father’s twin brother Lucas and his fiancée Annabel. Without a doubt, how two weak little unprotected youngsters survived on their own for so long is a marvel, but someone—or possibly something—had to have been guarding them in the dismal, hazardous jungle.

Annabel gradually thinks that, while the girls are settling into this secure, loving environment, whoever/whatever it was is still lurking. Could it be the ubiquitous soulless creature affectionately referred to as “Mama” by the girls?

13. 1408 (2007)

Mike Enslin, a semi-successful author of spine-chilling ghost stories, makes a livelihood refuting unexplained happenings by visiting locations where paranormal activity has been recorded. Enslin, who is profoundly skeptical, receives an anonymous letter advising him not to check into the strange room 1408 of Manhattan’s Dolphin Hotel, which naturally piques his suspicion.

Mike disregards the hotel manager’s repeated warnings about the wicked room’s severe perils and, after packing his spirit-detecting equipment, bravely enters a secret universe of strange events and surreal situations. Will Room 1408 make an outstanding conclusion to skeptical Mike’s new novel?

12. Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1978)

Matthew Bennell, a public health inspector in San Francisco, is interested when a coworker and personal friend, Elizabeth Driscoll, informs him that her husband has changed dramatically. He advises they consult with his buddy, psychiatrist David Kibner, who agrees that some of his patients say their husbands or spouses are not who they appear to be.

He chalks it up to widespread hysteria until two other friends of Matthew’s, Jack and Nancy Bellicec, uncover a partially formed body. They quickly learn that people are being displaced by perfect replicas who are heartless and appear to be unstoppable in their mission to supplant everyone.

11. A Quiet Place (2018)

In a shattered Earth overtaken by unstoppable predators of unknown origin, the Abbotts struggle for survival in the bleak urban jungle of New York City, marked by a new period of complete quiet.

Indeed, because this new species of the invader is drawn to noise, even the faintest sound may be lethal; yet, it has been twelve months since the formidable creatures were first spotted, and this tenacious family continues to thrive.

Naturally, mastering the laws of life in this muted dystopia is critical; nevertheless, today, more than ever, an otherwise joyful occasion jeopardizes the already precarious equilibrium. And now, maybe more than ever, the Abbotts must remain silent.

RELATED: 50 Best Sci-Fi Horror Movies of All Time (RANKED)

10. Insidious (2010)

Josh and Renée Lambert, together with their two kids Dalton and Foster, are just settling into their new house when their eldest son falls from a ladder, strikes his head, and slips into a coma. After consulting with specialists and learning that their son does not have any brain injuries, the two parents had no clue what happened to their baby.

After a series of horrific, inexplicable incidents, the two seek the assistance of Elise Rainer, a paranormal investigator, who delivers the family ominous and terrible news concerning their son that makes a coma seem trivial…

9. The Ring (2002)

Rachel Keller is a journalist who chooses to go undercover to investigate the unexplained deaths of her niece and three friends, all of whom appeared to die at the same time- 10:00 PM- on the same day.

After learning that her niece was discovered in a closet with a horrific expression on her face, she looks through her room and discovers some photographs, photographs of the cabin where her niece and her friends had spent the week preceding the killings.

Rachel discovers the cottage and discovers an unidentified video inside. She chooses to watch it there, even though she now has a finite amount of time to live. She and her divorced husband, Noah, investigate the video to learn more about Anna Morgan and her daughter, Samara Morgan, the film’s creator.

With barely a week remaining, Rachel and Noah uncover unknown details about Samara Morgan’s life and, maybe, a means to remove the curse.

8. Drag Me to Hell (2009)

Christine Brown works at a bank as a loan officer but is concerned about her position in life. She’s up against a capable colleague for an assistant manager post and is unsure about her relationship status with a lover.

Fearful that her boss will see her less favorably if she exhibits weakness, she declines to extend a loan to an elderly woman, Mrs. Ganush, who is now facing foreclosure and the loss of her home.

In revenge, the elderly woman places a curse on her, which she later discovers would result in her being sent to hell within a few days. She attempts to exorcise the demon with the assistance of a psychic but encounters numerous roadblocks along the way.

7. The Others (2001)

Toward the conclusion of the Second World War, a woman called Grace retires with her two children to a mansion in Jersey, where she awaits the return of her husband from fighting. The youngsters suffer from a condition that prevents them from being exposed to direct sunlight without being harmed in some manner.

They would live alone there under harsh, weird, almost holy restrictions until she can recruit a bunch of slaves. Their entrance will unintentionally cause the rules to be broken, resulting in unanticipated results.

6. The Skeleton Key (2005)

Caroline Ellis quits her work to care for elderly Ben Devereux, who has had a stroke and is unable to communicate. When she arrives at Ben’s residence in Terrebonne Parish, Louisiana, she meets Violet, Ben’s wife, who exhibits strange and disturbing behavior. Caroline is persuaded to stay by the family’s lawyer, Luke Marshall.

Violet climbs to the attic and discovers a secret area filled with spells, hair, and bones used in Hoodoo practice, but Violet claims she has never seen this room.

Caroline wishes to assist Ben, believing Violet has cast a spell on him. She is fully aware that Hoodoo cannot harm someone who does not believe in it. Caroline has a chance to save Ben, but will she end up becoming the one who needs saving?

5. The Exorcism of Emily Rose (2005)

Emily Rose, a disturbed nineteen-year-old college girl plagued by terrifying visions and tortured by dark manifestations of evil while attending university, resorts to exorcism, only to suffer a dreadful death. Father Richard Moore, the priest who served her family, is now charged with negligent murder and is being defended by atheist attorney Erin Bruner.

As a result, the Church attempts to coerce Moore into taking a plea bargain; nevertheless, Moore wants to testify and draw attention to the hidden evil powers that surround us. This trial is increasingly becoming a struggle between religion and science; nevertheless, what has become of poor Emily?

4. Lights Out (2016)

Rebecca believed she had left her childhood worries behind when she left home. As a child, she was never certain what was and wasn’t real when the lights went out…and now her younger brother, Martin, is experiencing the same mysterious and scary occurrences that previously endangered her sanity and safety.

A terrifying creature with an unexplained connection to their mother, Sophie, has resurfaced. However, as Rebecca nears the truth, there is no doubting that all of their lives are in jeopardy…once the lights go out.

3. Jaws (1975)

Amity Island’s idyllic inhabitants are being tormented. Something is assaulting swimmers in the water. They can no longer enjoy the water and sun in the same way they used to, and the growing anxiety is impacting the number of visitors who visit this island regularly.

After many efforts, the great white shark refuses to go, and sheriff Brody, together with companions Hooper and Quint, decides to pursue and kill the shark.

2. I Am Legend (2007)

A virus was developed specifically for the goal of combating cancer, and it was delivered to cancer patients, and it appeared to be effective. However, a few years later, it evolved into an epidemic that kills the majority of humans on Earth or transforms them into monsters.

Only a handful are resistant. Among them is military scientist Robert Neville, who has spent the previous three years searching for a cure after the disease destroyed humanity. However, he is losing hope until two other immune individuals appear.

1. IT (2017)

When young children begin vanishing in the little town of Derry, Maine, a gang of seven children discovers that the perpetrator is not a man. Pennywise, the demonic clown that can shapeshift into anything you are most terrified of, is the killer.

The children, dubbed the Losers Club, vow to battle and assassinate It. However, how can you combat something aware of all your greatest fears?

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