5 family-friendly fall movies on Netflix this October

Solve your streaming indecision by getting cozy with one of these fall classics, all on Netflix this October.

The Little Rascals, Pete the dog, Bug Hall, 1994.

There’s only one thing that can ruin a cozy family movie night: streaming indecision. That Netflix conundrum where you spend at least twenty minutes (add five minutes per additional family member on the couch) choosing what to watch—scrolling through endless queues and “recommended for you”s without any hope of actually pressing play on any of them. It’s enough to make you yearn for the days of driving to Blockbuster for VHS rentals.

Instead of giving up and watching Zootopia again (even though, yes, it was that good), try one of these fall classics on Netflix, bound to please every member of the family.

E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial (1982)

This movie practically defines the phrase “fall family classics.” The sci-fi nature of Steven Spielberg’s mega-hit is perfect for that Halloween feel (plus much of the movie is set in autumn, complete with a trick-or-treating scene). If the combination of flying bicycles and an adorable, tiny Drew Barrymore (who plays sister Gertie) isn’t enough to draw your kids in, the emotional tale about a young lonely boy with a big heart will.

Appropriate for ages: 12 and up (rated PG)

Viewer discretion: A few scenes are frightening and intense, which could be scary for younger viewers. There is also some profanity.

Best message: Sure, all alien movies have the “we are not alone” idea built-in, but this one puts a little deeper meaning behind that phrase: Friends come in all forms, and that friendship can give us the courage to do things we’d never imagine.

Escape to Witch Mountain (1975)

An oldie but a goodie, this tale of two orphans, Tony and Tia, with extraordinary psychic powers continues to capture the imaginations of children and adults alike. (Which is probably why countless sequels have been made.) The two kids take a long journey, accompanied by a cynical widower who feels compelled to help them, to figure out where home is.

Appropriate for ages: 8 and up (rated G)

Viewer discretion: Very mild fighting (a sheriff gets hit with a broom come-to-life, a child gets hit with a baseball glove come-to-life), and the suggestion that witches should be “hunted.”

Best message: Tia and Tony exemplify the power of teamwork, and putting family first. Jason, the man who helps them, also learns a nice lesson about grief, and restoring your sense of purpose after loss.

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The Little Rascals (1994)

Lots of little boys lead to all kinds of hilarious trouble in this neighborhood flick … especially when the main character, Alfalfa, starts to like a girl. As president of the “He-Man Woman Haters Club,” he has organized with his friends, Alfalfa finds himself torn between his puppy love for Darla and his boys-only friendships.

Appropriate for ages: 8 and up (rated PG)

Viewer discretion: A few of the young children kiss, some rude dialogue, and a punch is thrown.

Best message: As we grow older, our friendships need to grow with us—and that’s not always an easy process. But it’s one worth figuring out for our true friends.

Fairy Tale: A True Story (1997)

This story isn’t a fairy tale as in a folk tale; it’s a literal fairy tale. This World War I drama follows the story of two little English girls who take a photo that has the world asking: do fairies exist? While magic and the wonder of childhood are certainly large themes in the story, you also feel the pull of the global tensions that characterized this time in history. Get ready to meet Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and Houdini along the way.

Appropriate for ages: 7 and up (rated PG)

Viewer discretion: Wounded soldiers and other hints of war are depicted.

Best message: Hold onto your faith, even if the whole world doubts you.

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The Princess Bride (1987)

Even if you’ve seen this movie a hundred times, it will still make you laugh on viewing one-hundred-and-one. A stubborn princess, a handsome farm boy, rhyming giants, sword-play adventure, a wide-eyed Fred Savage, and true love? This classic is already a tradition for many families, and if it’s not in yours, we’re betting it soon might be.

Appropriate for ages: 12 and up (rated PG)

Viewer discretion: It’s an action-adventure fantasy, so there is violence in the form of sword-fights and deaths, plus a few scary scenes that involve non-gruesome torture, fire, and slaying a large rat and a giant eel. Also, as an embarrassed child Fred Savage notes for all the viewers at the beginning of the movie, there is kissing.

Best message: True love conquers all, even if you need to wait a long time for it, or you need to work hard to keep it.

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