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Whether you're a parent, a babysitter, or the dead-eyed teenager in the IKEA playroom, it can be hard to know what movies are appropriate to show to kids. Violence and big-boy language and huge bare asses can show up in almost any film, and even movies supposedly meant for kids can have some extremely messed-up stuff going on. For example ...

8
Beethoven Ends With Medical Horror

Universal Pictures

Beethoven tells the story of an enormous St. Bernard and the family of tiny people who ride around on him.

Universal Pictures
Wait, no, that's just the poster. We were wrong when we said that earlier thing.

Basically, it's promised to be a fun kids' movie, with conflicts hinging mainly on sofa-ruining. And it is! At least until the final act.

The Horrifying Scene:

Beethoven actually has a villain: an evil veterinarian who conducts illegal experiments on animals. The vet becomes obsessed with kidnapping Beethoven, and even goes so far as to orchestrate a fake bloody attack so he can confiscate the enormous beast.

Universal Pictures
"Yes, my blood does look like food coloring. What of it?"

Eventually, the family figures out the truth and tracks down the doctor in his filthy animal murder den. There, they discover that he's not only a crooked vet, but also a gun-wielding vet, as he demonstrates when he very nearly murders the dad. He's only stopped when the dog from Frasier bites him in the penis.

Universal Pictures
"Tossed Salad Chewed Sausage And Scrambled Eggs"

That's violent, but also hilarious and heartwarming, so it's fine. Rather less heartwarming is when the kids crash the family station wagon into the lab, hitting the table full of sharp, precariously positioned syringes ...

Universal Pictures

... directly into the evil vet's chest.

Universal Pictures
"This is pleasant compared to the dick thing ..."

That would be an intense scene in a Cronenberg movie, let alone a movie whose advertising featured a dog eating a drumstick.

7
Agent Cody Banks Ends With Hilary Duff Committing A Grisly Murder

MGM

Agent Cody Banks is what happens when you take James Bond (a character famous for killing, drinking, and casual misogyny) and rewrite him as a child. It's the cute story of a 15-year-old who battles international terrorists despite the handicap of being unable to drive a car, talk to girls, or vote -- say, for a president who doesn't put minors into combat situations.

MGM
Geneva Convention violations the whole family can love.

The Horrifying Scene:

Like most James Bond movies, the final showdown takes place in a giant and curiously well-staffed secret base. Unlike most James Bond movies, it ends with a teenage girl murdering someone.

While Cody Banks is dealing with puberty and also the villain's henchmen, Hilary Duff, portraying the daughter of a famous scientist, decides to take out the villainous Ian McShane. Duff, hair windblown to the point where she's in serious danger of selling us shampoo, approaches McShane and shoves an ice cube filled with nanobots down his throat ...

MGM

... and the nanobots proceed to eat him alive from the inside out.

MGM
"Can I make a 'He chose poorly' quip, or are we only allow to rip off one franchise at a time?"

To reiterate, she's not a secret agent. She's just some kid. And, aside from the fact that no government agency should ever give a random teenage girl the power to kill someone at their own discretion (they would do it all the time), what's the psychological impact of this going to be for her? Years of crying and night sweats? Do you get a half day at school for turning someone inside out?

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6
An American Tail Ends With A Robotic Demon Mouse

DreamWorks Animation

An American Tale is a classic spin on the American immigrant story, using adorable cartoon mice for the benefit of children and adults incapable of sympathizing with real human refugees.

DreamWorks Animation
"BACK TO MOUSYRIA WITH YOU, FIEVEL!"

The already emotionally fraught topic is made moreso by the fact that the film was directed by Don Bluth, the guy famous for making The Secret of NIMH and The Land Before Time -- cartoon Trojan Horses filled with merciless existential depression. Which means we shouldn't have been too surprised when a completely terrifying scene appeared in the finale of this film.

The Horrifying Scene:

Toward the end of the movie, Fievel and his fellow mice devise a plan to build a giant mechanical mouse to defeat the evil cats. So we're still safely in cartoon territory here. But because this is a Don Bluth movie, we can't simply get a regular beep-boop-beep robot mouse. No, we get a sallow-eyed demon mouse that comes crashing through the screen and into the backs of your eyelids for all eternity.

DreamWorks Animation
I-A-M 6-6-6 S-A-T-A-N

5
Ghost Dad Becomes A Ghost After Being Murdered By A Satanist

Universal Pictures

It's obviously difficult to enjoy any Bill Cosby movie or TV show these days, considering the growing number of women who have accused the comedian of sexual assault. But there is at least one Cosby flick which is kind of fun to think about: the one where he dies in the first ten minutes.

Universal Pictures
To match all your dying childhood memories of him.

Yup, Ghost Dad. How could a movie premised on the hilarity of a man coming back to haunt his now-orphaned children be secretly horrifying? Well, let us tell you.

The Horrifying Scene:

Cosby's death is kind of a necessary part of the script -- it's right there in the title. But in children's movies about death, you'd expect the blow to be softened a bit. That's why Bambi's mom isn't beaten to death by bikers, or Ellie from Up isn't repeatedly backed over by a car voiced by Owen Wilson.

But Ghost Dad doesn't go that way. Ghost Dad instead takes us straight to Horror City, using the most horrifying method of travel there is: a taxi. For no particular reason, Cosby ends up in a taxi driven by a man who ably illustrates his mental state when he leans back and asks: "DO YOU ACCEPT THE LORD SATAN AS A SUPREME BEING?!"

Universal Pictures
"Uh, accepting me doesn't mean rejecting your toothbrush." -- Satan

After a bit of back and forth, with Cosby pleading for his life and the cabbie shouting, "DO YOU WORSHIP SATAN?" Cosby changes tack and decides to yell back that he is Satan.

Universal Pictures
Which is a hell of a thing, in retrospect.

Unfortunately, this causes the cabbie to freak the fuck out ...

Universal Pictures

... and drive the cab off a bridge ...

Universal Pictures
"Still better than my last five Uber drivers."

Why Bill Cosby felt the need to introduce Satanism and murder into the first act of his movie for children is a question that will probably never be answered, suffice to say that Bill Cosby is obviously a son of a bitch.

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4
The Second Ewok Movie Opens With A Goddamned Massacre

Lucasfilm

Considering the fact that they were created exclusively to sell toys to children, it should come as little surprise that the Ewoks, the lovable man-killing rodents introduced in Return Of The Jedi, got their own (short-lived) series of spinoff films for kids. In the first film, Caravan Of Courage, the intergalactic teddy bears help a brother and sister find their lost parents. You know, instead of eating them.

Lucasfilm
Pictured: Star Wars, without any of the things you like in it.

Possibly sensing that the audience for Ewok movies was getting older, Lucasfilm decided to make things a little more mature in the sequel, Ewoks: The Battle For Endor. And by "mature," we of course mean "violent reaving."

The Horrifying Scene:

While the first movie is a cute adventure about a family reuniting, its sequel starts off with a bloody massacre. Moments after the opening credits, the Ewok village is promptly attacked by Endor's other, less toy-like inhabitants: a gang of murder-crazed monster people.

Lucasfilm
"Remember the opening of Conan? That's how I want Ewoks 2 to start." -- George Lucas

Most upsettingly, all those fresh-faced characters we grew to love in the first movie die within minutes. First, there's the heroine's mom and brother ...

Lucasfilm

Thankfully, her dad, who has suddenly morphed into Deputy Dwayne T. Robinson, is still OK.

Lucasfilm

But not for long.

Lucasfilm
"Does she have a dog we can kill? Or stuffed animals we can rip the heads off of?"

That's a whole lot of orphaning to happen in the opening minutes of a children's movie. Even more bizarre is the reason all these characters were killed off. According to the actor who played the brother, Lucas was only making another Ewoks film for his daughter, and since she only gave a shit about the young girl character, he evidently took that to mean that Ewoks 2 should violently purge the story of all the characters his daughter didn't relate to. That's some top-shelf parenting from the weaver of dreams.

3
Satan's Cameo In The Adventures Of Mark Twain

Clubhouse Pictures

The Adventures Of Mark Twain is a claymation fantasy about Mark Twain and three of his child characters flying a blimp to Halley's Comet. Although it sounds more like a prog rock opera, this is legitimately a family film, so that's why it's on the list.

Clubhouse Pictures
*Exhausting 12 Minute Guitar Solo*

The Horrifying Scene:

At one point, the group rides a magical elevator that takes them inside the worlds of Twain's beloved books. Hey, here's one you probably recognize, The Adventures Of Tom Sawyer.

Clubhouse Pictures

What book do they visit next? A Connecticut Yankee In King Arthur's Court? The Prince And The Pauper? Nope, it's The Mysterious Stranger, Twain's unfinished book about the Devil. And when the elevator doors open, sure enough, the strange otherworldly figure that greets them introduces himself ... as Satan.

Clubhouse Pictures
"Sup?"

And because Mark Twain is apparently the worst babysitter in the entire world, he does not repeatedly punch the "close door" button, but instead shoos the children along to go hang out with Satan on his floating space rock.

Clubhouse Pictures
As you do.

Satan, as you might expect, is a bit of a dick, and entertains the kids by first creating a civilization of tiny clay people ...

Clubhouse Pictures

... and then creating an apocalypse to kill the civilization of tiny clay people.

Clubhouse Pictures

Clubhouse Pictures

Clubhouse Pictures
Now this is just a Tool video.

That's a heck of a lesson for young kids to learn. Parenting experts might question the wisdom of even teaching it at all.

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2
Disney's Star Wars Knockoff Ended In The Bowels Of Hell, For Some Reason

Walt Disney

Before they up and bought the damned thing, Disney took a crack at competing with Star Wars. The result was 1979's The Black Hole, and although this was Disney's first PG movie, it was still squarely aimed at kids, following the Star Wars model of including cute robots who mainly exist to appear on a bunch of shitty merchandise.

Walt Disney
"That'd look OK on some underoos, we guess."

The movie finds a spaceship crew battling an evil scientist and a robot -- who, lacking googly eyes, is also probably evil. It's a rather dull movie, in truth ... at least, until a director who was presumably trying to get fired took things in a new, crazier direction.

The Horrifying Scene:

In the end, the crew enters the eponymous black hole, because it would have been pretty disappointing if that hadn't happened. It's an exciting moment, because neither the crew nor the audience know what's about to happen to them. Will they be crushed into space dust, or discover some grand new universe? Let's find out together!

Walt Disney
"Crap."

Nope. It's Hell. Like, the literal Christian version of hell, which it seems exists inside all black holes. And if that wasn't hamfisted enough, a light soon appears, and we follow what is either an angel or the Ghost of Christmas Past out of the black hole ...

Walt Disney

... which saves the good guys, while leaving the bad guy and his robot damned for all eternity.

Walt Disney
Boom! Moral! Don't be evil, kids.

Neil deGrasse Tyson called this the most scientifically inaccurate movie of all time, which a) sounds true, and b) spectacularly misses the point. Which, if we're being honest, is his M.O.

1
The Peanut Butter Solution And Its Mutant Pubic Hair

New World Pictures

The Peanut Butter Solution is the craziest movie ever made. Period. Fact. Done.

Made in Canada in the 1980s, it tells the story of a young boy who breaks into an abandoned house and gets knocked unconscious by a homeless ghost couple living inside. In other words, we're off to a promising start. The vicious paranormal assault causes the boy to lose his hair, which forces him to make a peanut-butter based magic potion that will grow his hair back, because why the fuck not. However, the peanut butter solution works too well, making him into an irresistible kidnapping target for his art teacher, who uses children's hair for paint brushes.

New World Pictures
Welcome to 1980s Canada.

The Horrifying Scene:

There are a few to choose from. So let's focus on the plot thread that involves mutant pubic hair. When the main character, Michael, uses the titular solution to grow his hair back, his best pal Connie decides to slap a little of the magic hair tonic "down there."

New World Pictures
"I know where your dick is, Connie. You don't have to point."

Young boys applying black magic to their genitals is troubling enough, but we're not done yet. After getting in trouble at school, Connie meets the principal, who tells him he has a "little problem." The problem? Rapunzel-like torrents of pubic hair spilling from the bottom of his pants.

New World Pictures
"Please stop asking girls to use it to climb to your tower."

In one scene, Connie can't even sleep because his new pubes have gone full ZZ Top.

New World Pictures
Every girl's crazy 'bout a bearded dong.

And in case all the homeless ghost curses, child abduction, and mutant pubic hair isn't enough, please note that all the songs for this movie were performed by Celine Dion. That really pushes it over the top.

J.M. McNab co-hosts the pop culture nostalgia podcast Rewatchability, which can also be found on iTunes. Follow him on Twitter @Rewatchability.

Which Sci-Fi Trope Would You Bring To The Real World, And Why? Every summer, we're treated to the same buffet of three or four science fiction movies with the same basic conceits. There's man vs. aliens, man vs. robots, man vs. army of clones, and man vs. complicated time travel rules. With virtual reality and self-driving cars fast approaching, it's time to consider what type of sci-fi movie we want to be living in for the rest of our lives. Co-hosts Jack O'Brien and Adam Tod Brown are joined by Cracked's Tom Reimann and Josh Sargent and comedians David Huntsberger, Adam Newman, and Caitlin Gill to figure out which sci-fi trope would be the best to make a reality. Get your tickets to this live podcast here!

For more questionable content in kids products, check out 7 Horrifying Moments From Classic Kids Movies and 9 Traumatizing Moments From Classic Kids Movies.

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