10 Best PG-13 Horror Films

The much-maligned rating doesn't always guarantee a fright-free horror film...

Universal Pictures

Alright look, by now, everyone has heard the anti PG-13 horror argument.

Since its inception in the mid eighties, the PG-13 rating has acted as a go-between for films which are a bit too intense for kids but have done nothing to earn an adults-only R rating. The category itself was originally created after a flood of concerned parents complained about the one-two punch of massively successful dark kids's films in 1984, Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom and Gremlins.

And it served a purpose, ensuring pre-teens weren't exposed to the sight of a torn out still-beating human heart or Phoebe Cates' disturbing, darkly funny story of how she discovered there was no Santa. But after a spate of gory slasher flicks filled cinemas in the nineties post-Scream's revival of the sub genre, the early noughties saw a new trend in the form of Japanese horror re-imaginings and cleaner slasher remakes.

These hits infamously avoided gore to earn a PG-13 rating and maximize their audience, and many of them avoided any solid scares in the process.

But despite the rating's reputation as a dumping ground for sanitised remakes and bloodless bores, the PG-13 horror can be a formidable beast whose deceptively gore-less surface can mask serious scares, as epitomised by these ten gems.


Cathal Gunning hasn't written a bio just yet, but if they had... it would appear here.