Okay, I’m starting to get excited about all this Christmas business.
The lights, the sparkle, the anticipation, the treats, and one of my most favourite holiday features…the movies!
I do love a good Christmas themed or Christmas related movie!
We have a few traditional films in my family that we always watch at this time of year, some are a little more irreverent than others, but all are favourites!
My Top 14 Christmas Movies—from nostalgic to traditional favourites!
4. All I Want for Christmas—Not the greatest of plots or even acting, but because this came out when I was a teen and the main guy in the movie is a young Ethan Embry…it became a memorable favourite. Also starring a very young and precocious Thora Birch!
13. A Muppet Christmas Carol—Who can say no to Kermit as Bob Cratchit, Michael Caine as Ebenezer Scrooge, or Gonzo as Dickens himself? I haven’t watched this often but it’s certainly a must see every few Christmases.
12. Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer—Besides the fact that this is one of the weirdest and creepiest Christmas movies, it was always a childhood favourite of mine. Who doesn’t want to watch a stop-animation story about a dentist-wannabe elf, an ostracized reindeer with the most annoying honking red nose, and a bunch of misfit toys? The only drawback as a child was that the abominable snowman always freaked me out!
11. The Polar Express—Though I’ve only seen this a handful of times, I’ve recently watched it with my seven-year-old nephews and gained a new perspective and appreciation for the amazing visuals and story behind this movie. I love the roller coaster ride feel but I don’t think they need to mention anything about “ghosts”, and someone needs to smack that annoying know-it-all kid. PS – the skydiving and bungee jumping elves are fantastic!
10. Die Hard—Yes, it’s an action movie, but Bruce Willis is my guy! Alan Rickman is also the best villain ever as Hans Gruber and this movie is full of fun, wit, and amazing stunts. Yippee-ki-yay!
9. A Charlie Brown Christmas—As the very first Charlie Brown movie, the oh-so recognizable and fuzzy feeling soundtrack alone gets this a top nomination! One of my nephew’s favourites and a heart-warming classic.
8. The Nativity Story—A family classic and wonderful portrayal of the real reason we celebrate Christmas. After all the craziness of our modern day holidays it’s good to watch the story of Christ’s birth and wonder at the love that came down to us.
7. The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe—Either the older BBC version or the new Hollywood remake, the adaptation from C.S. Lewis’s Chronicles of Narnia books is another favourite from childhood through adulthood. I love the story, the characters of Mr. Tumnus and the Beavers, plus Father Christmas even makes an appearance! If you haven’t seen these movies, find them and enjoy!
6. Home Alone—An instant favourite for many ages and chock full of quotable lines, Home Alone is a must-see every holiday season for young and old. Every child kind of wishes they could battle robbers with micro machines, paint cans, and zip-lines, and every adult can identify with the horrible feeling or possibility of leaving a child behind. “Keep the change, ya filthy animal!”
5. The Holiday—Ah the beauty of a snowy English cottage at Christmas and a handsome man knocking on your door in the middle of the night. This cute, fun and witty house-swap movie is full of heart and humour. One of my favourites that I watch a few times throughout the year whether my heart is happy or needing a good pick-me-up.
4. Elf—Wil Ferrel is the epitome of a man-child in this Christmas tale of an adopted boy raised by elves. In his quest to find his real father he brings true Christmas spirit to all around him with his childlike fun and faith in the season. So many moments are now classics in themselves and will be quoted forever. “Santa! I know him!”
3. Love Actually—An intermingling of personal narratives of people struggling with loss, love, and family around the Christmas season. I love the actors, characters, music, and stories in this mash-up movie. (There are a few awkwardly racy bits in one story line, but otherwise pretty safe.) Some of my favourite actors get excellent roles and plots including Colin Firth, Hugh Grant, a young Andrew Lincoln, the creepy-handed Bill Nighy, Liam Neeson, Kiera Knightly, a skeesy Alan Rickman and the stoic Emma Thompson.
2. A Christmas Story—”You’ll shot your eye out!” An all-time family favourite that just gets better every year! Bunny Pjs, bulky snowsuits, bullies, secret codes, soap, turkey dinner and a good old fashioned but realistic family Christmas
1. National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation—Irreverent, yes, but the funniest Christmas move around! For years my family watched this on Christmas Eve….BUT we were watching the heavily edited and censored TV version. Not until we bought a DVD copy and watched it did we realize it was peppered with awesomely awful not-safe-for-kids moments. Chevy Chase outdoes himself as Clark Griswold just trying to have a traditional family Christmas when rough but sweet cousins, preppie neighbours, horrible bosses, and everything else gets in the way. At least he fixed the newel post! Play ball!
What are YOUR favourite Christmas Movies and why? Comment Away!