A G rated horror movie?

Do you think it is possible to make one? Or at least a scary PG rated movie? And how would you make one?

I think I have the idea for a possibly scary horror movie that could be rated PG or even G-you be the judge!
Please forgive any minor spelling or grammar mistakes, English is not my native language.
The movie takes place in a small, fictional town somewhere in New York (state), almost perfect on the outside. Main characters are a group of children, ages twelve to fourteen. They hang out, have crushes, play video games, and yes, they do lie to ther friends and parents on occassion, often using smartphones. And it’s all good.
But something weird starts happening one spring day. Whenever they write a text message containing a lie and click “Send”, the moments before getting sent, the message switches to the true account of events. (As you know, with modern smartphones, it usually only takes a second or two for the message to get sent, so you can’t really stop it.) It happens every time. When they call and try explaining themselves, they again become unable to lie.

It only happens with them at first. Then with other children. Then with the adults. And they are all too busy with covering up their lies to actually try resolving the problem.

The kids start suspecting their computer science teacher: she doesn’t appear to be affected by the events and often stays at school until late. One kid thinks he saw her following him around. But her weird behavior and a lack of fearmay be due to tragedies in her life: her husband died in a car accident two years prior and her son also died a year later.

Still, since the things keep escalating, they sneak intothe school at night, fooling their parents with a lie over a sleepover, and wait for her in one of the computer science classrooms. She does show up, opening a secret compartment behind the closet in the corner: there is some sort of a receiver hidden inside. The kids confront her: she breaks the light bulb on the ceiling and starts running away, trying to make her getaway with a help of a flashlight.
They chase her through the (big) classroom in the dark. She explains that she grew distant from her son following her husbands death: they would mostly communicate through cellphones and he would often lie to her and stay out late. He eventually died due to an alcohol poisoning after mixing with the wrong crowd and getting drunk.
She has done a lot of research about the smartphones following his death and realized that it’s energy is strong enough to documment person’s mind impulses, after which it stores them in the back of it’s memory. She managed to obtain the parent’s cellphone numbers and then their children’s, then hacked the cellphones and programmed them to make the information visible, setting them to activate at different times each. When talking on the phone, impulses even become strong enough to control one’s minds, only making them able to say the latest recorded information when talking on the phone. The receiver placed there ensures that everything will keep going as planned, but it has to be re set every once in a while.
They eventually catch up with her in the hallway and struggle: they throw her down the stairs. When they walk down the stairs to check on her, she wakes up and grabs at the girl’s ankle, trying to stand up and punching her. The girl, strangles her to death with a broomstick that the janitor has left, forgotten, near by.
Then they go outside, only to find the town completely in ruins and people going on a rampage once all of their lies have been uncovered.

The movie ends with the quote saying: “Things come apart so easily when they have been held together with lies.”

No gore, swear words on sex, an intriguinh subject/moral message, though it may get rated PG instead of G due to an atmosphere and some violence.

With the strangulation scene, a G rating is right out. I’d think PG would be doubtful, too. Maybe the computer science teacher could be dispensed with in some other way? If the PG rating is important, that is.

FWIW, the 1983 Disney movie Something Wicked This Way Comes was PG-rated horror movie. Of course, that was a year before the PG-13 rating was devised – that’s the rating Something Wicked would probably get today.

The film version of Neil Gaiman’s Coraline was rated PG, and I’d describe it as a horror movie for kids.

As was Return to Oz, which was a horror movie in many ways.

What about the dark scenes in many Disney animated films? I’m thinking the “Night on Bald Mountain” sequence from Fantasia. Also, I find the Dwarfs quite frightening when they’re pursuing the witch up the cliff in Snow White; I shudder to think what might have happened had they caught her!

This wasn’t a movie, but I remember watching Child of Glass on The Wonderful World of Disney when I was a kid and it scared the bejeezus out of me. Since it wasn’t released as a movie, there wasn’t a rating, but WWoD was generally aimed at families and kids.

Poltergeist, Watcher in the Woods and Twilight Zone: The Movie were all PG

I’d say Snow White and the Seven Dwarves or Bambi - both by Walt Disney could be considered G-rated “horror movies.” They both involve some seriously anxiety inducing themes (loss of parents, being left to fend for oneself in a hostile landscape), and both have some particularly intense moments.

Well, since horror movies usually get the R rating due to violence, blood, swear words, sex, people keep piling up all that in many of modern day horror movies to the point that it becomes too unreal to be scary and distracts from the plot/atmosphere. I want to take “less is more” approach.
Also, I want to see a horror movie suitable for children/young teenagers so children can enjoy in such movies from an early age, slowly getting familiar with the genre and growing to love/understand it, moving from almost completely non graphic ones to things like “Saw” etc. You can do so with genres like comedy, romance, fantasy, science-fiction, even thriller, but not really a horror…
As for the murder scene, what I had in mind is: we see the girl launching at the teacher with the broom, then we switch to the girl’s face as she is strangling the teacher: we only see the girl’s face and, partially, her arms, hear the girl moan, gasp, the teacher groan, we occasionally switch to the view of the other children gathered around, watching the murder happen, shocked. When the teacher finally dies, we get to see her face (and her neck, the broomstick still being pressed against it) when she takes her last breath. Her body grows stiff, her eyes turn dull and lifeless… and she is motionless.

You also can’t do it with porn, because it’s not appropriate for kids.

Same thing with horror, to a lesser degree.

What do I mean by “lesser degree”? Well, you can have scary things. But they have to be at a level a kid can process without having nightmares. And that gets really tricky. My younger brother, at four, sneaked into the room once when Dr. Who was on, saw a tube of talking glowing green goo, and was so traumatized by the experience that for years ended every nighttime prayer with “and please don’t let me dream about the green goo!” My daughter, at about the same age, saw Brave, and the bear fight completely freaked her out.

So no. Your scene with the child murdering the teacher? You’re not going to film it in a way that makes it okay for kids. It’s the subject matter, not the angles or the amount of splatter, that makes it something you don’t want to show kids.

It is a cartoon.


There have been horror/scary television series for kids, including Are You Afraid of the Dark? and Goosebumps (which “may be too spooky for children under seven”).

Some of the old monster movies from the 1930’s-50’s might be G- or PG-rated by today’s standards.

A horror movie isn’t just a movie that has some sad or frightening content, though. Otherwise the majority of movies, even many comedies and romances, would be horror movies.

Again, all these were released before the PG-13 rating existed.

Bambi–now, that’s G-rated horror. “Run, Bambi, run!” (Shudders)

This is probably a massive stretch, but how about The Andromeda Strain or 1968 Planet of the Apes? Both rated G.

When I was a kid, my family went to see The Legend of Boggy Creek. Sortof a docu-drama about a bigfoot creature terrorizing the folks in a small southern town. It scared the crap out of me (I was about 5 I guess).

As I recall (and I’m real fuzzy on the details), the movie was a combination of interviews, “found footage,” and reenactments, but there was a bigfoot monster and it was scary (to a kid, anyway). One scene in particular there was this guy in an outhouse on the crapper and bigfoot attacked.

My family went camping a lot. For a couple of years every time we went camping I just knew that bigfoot was out there ready to get me.

This movie was rated G.

The Legend of Boggy Creek - rated G.

That thing is a horror movie for everyone. *:: shudder :: *.

Anyway, the recent Goosebumps movie was rated PG, and would definitely qualify as horror. And not just because Jack Black is in it! (It’s actually pretty good.)

Coraline was “Rated PG for thematic elements, scary images, some language and suggestive humor”, the Goosebumps movie was “Rated PG for scary and intense creature action and images, and for some rude humor”, and another recent scary movie for kids, ParaNorman was “Rated PG for scary action and images, thematic elements, some rude humor and language”. So even if there aren’t any swear words, or violence explicitly shown on screen, any scary movie will probably be rated at least PG for scary images or for scary things happening. In theory a G rating means general audience, and something that everyone could see, but really now if a movie is G, everyone thinks it’s for little kids, and the movie you describe is not something to take a 4-year-old to see.