This Week on POPSUGAR Rush: Is ‘The Polar Express’ a Horror Movie?

halloween jackson starr popsugar rush scary children's movies

The spooky season is upon us, folks! Pumpkins are afoot, horror movies are abuzz, and Starr and I are happy to finally have an episode of POPSUGAR Rush where we can leave out Taylor Swift and Beyoncé and it will make sense. That’s right — this week’s episode of POPSUGAR Rush is our spooky, horror-filled, Halloween episode.

After we stopped talking about our chosen costumes for the recording of this episode (spoiler: they’re both callbacks to things discussed in earlier episodes), Starr and I chatted about our history with scary movies. We all remember the horror movies that scare us most (for me, Wolf Creek) but what we don’t give enough attention to is the movies that scare us that aren’t meant to. We all know the Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory boat scene, but Starr has entered a new contender in the ring: The Polar Express.

What are the Scariest Children’s Movies?

In contrast, The Polar Express is my favourite Christmas movie and I watch it every year. It’s cheesy! It’s strange! It’s got an entire musical performance dedicated to hot chocolate! But Starr says the hyperrealistic animation of the film terrified her as a child. Not to mention there’s that admittedly spooky scene with a seemingly inconsequential character on top of the train, and then the creepy marionette. Why would those behind the film, which is absolutely for children, include those darker elements?

Granted, I remember trying to watch the first Harry Potter film when I was about 6 years old. It took just one look at the faint whoosh of Voldemort’s cloak in the distance in the Forbidden Forest for me to politely tap out and swear never to again. That was, until, I was at a sleepover and my friends wanted to watch it six months later. I put on a brave face and made it through the entire movie — and I’m pretty sure those nightmares were gone by high school. Let’s celebrate that!

Elsewhere in this spooky episode of POPSUGAR Rush, Starr and I discussed:

  • Actual horror movies being shown to kids by accident.
  • The time-travelling, suspense-filled new slasher Totally Killer on Prime Video.
  • The best celebrity Halloween costumes ever (hello Heidi Klum)
  • What we want to see from costumes this year (please no Wednesday Addams).

Listen to the latest episode above, or via any major podcast provider.


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