In what is becoming a holiday tradition, we watched the Nightmare Before Christmas as a family.
Honestly, as our kid grows older, I can see some holiday works beings ones that he grows out of. But Nightmare is probably going to be there for the long haul.
I think part of the movies strength is that it doesn’t talk down to the audience or pull its punches. The common denizens of Halloween Town, both their natures and their proclivities, are the stuff of nightmares. The Oogie Boogie Man is right out of the Festival by H. P. Lovecraft.
However, when our son says to me ‘This is Halloween is the Halloween song,’ I think he really nails a powerful part of the movie’s appeal. Outside of The Monster Mash and Werewolves of London (maybe Thriller?), I can’t think of any other Halloween anthems that have really made it into the collective consciousness. (Which still puts Halloween way ahead of Thanksgiving and Arbor Day)
There is a LOT that makes Nightmare work and the score is just one part of it. That said, it’s a musical that clicks even with people who don’t like musicals.
Honestly, I don’t feel like I can do Nightmare justice and I’m sure that no one reading this hasn’t seen it. Probably seen it lots of times. It is a children’s movie I don’t mind seeing over and over again. And I don’t mind hearing our son sing This is Halloween constantly :D