Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Best Christmas Movies of All Ever

Wendy took my Cinemawesomeness idea to talk about her favorite Christmas movies, so I am in turn taking her idea to share with you my favorite holiday flicks! Now let me start by saying that in my mind pretty much every qualification (within reason) for good filmmaking goes out the window when it comes to Christmas movies. There are three criteria that holiday movies must meet to make my list:

1.) render nostalgia
2.) make me feel happy
3.) snow

With that in mind... Yay Christmas!

Un conte de Noël (2008)
I'll take any opportunity I can get to talk about this lovely film. It's beautiful, quirky, fancy--French! Every film about dysfunctional families spending Christmas together wishes it could be A Christmas Tale. A rare (the sole?) intelligent film on my list.

A Christmas Story (1983)
This one really fulfills #1 for me, maybe because I've had a lifelong fascination with living during the 1940s, but more likely because there is no better picture of what it means to be at kid at Christmas. To me, this film defines childhood.

The Santa Clause (1994)
I cannot tell a lie. I watch this every year with my grandma. Tim Allen hurts my brain, but it transports me back to that happy place that was the 1990s.

Elf (2003)
I mean... duh. Will Ferrell's best non-Anchorman role since SNL, Zooey Deschanel when she was still adorable and not obnoxious, Ed Asner and Bob Newhart (!! - I had a very Nick at Night childhood) and arguably the most holiday cheer you will find anywhere. Also, insanely quotable. "Smiling's my favorite!"

White Christmas (1954)
Two words: Vera. Ellen.

Home Alone 1 & 2 (1990 & 1992)
Yes, they are an entity. Don't question my methods! The holiday music, the cheese pizza, the tarantula, Marv!! Most importantly, the Christmas tree. B (who wants desperately to be Kevin...what little boy doesn't?) and I have worn out our DVDs... guess we NEED the blu-rays!

The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993)
Sally sews herself back together and my little heart ooshes out of my chest. I love seeing happy things through Tim Burton's eyes. For as much as he twists and darkens them, he never loses that childlike love and fascination for them. "What's This?" is on my imaginary greatest Christmas songs of all ever mixtape. Oooh, new project.

How the Grinch Stole Christmas (1966)
This movie is my oldest holiday memory, back when I felt so sad for Max and was terrified of the Grinch. So... yesterday. I was littler than Cindy Lou when I started watching this and it's only gotten better. Yet another blu-ray I need!

Scrooged (1988)
Bill Murray + the 80s + A Christmas Carol? Yes, please. Put a little love in your heart!

Love Actually
I can't think of another movie that can make me happy like this one, and I will defend its excellence to the death. The best cast in the history of great casts, hilarious, sad, smart. It's universally enjoyable, and bff Justin and I like to have a good cry/laugh over it around the holidays.

There are so many great films with holiday scenes and themes, but this my go-to list. For the record, I don't love It's A Wonderful Life because it makes me super emo and Miracle on 34th Street is a Thanksgiving movie in my mind. If someone would like to introduce me to Hanukkah-ish or other wintery holiday movies, I would love that.

Who else is indulging in holiday movies and what are you watching?


  1. I always considered The Nightmare Before Christmas a Thanksgiving movie. And no Christmas film list is complete without Silent Night, Deadly Night or Santa Claus Conquers the Martians. There aren't any really good about Hanukkah or, matter of fact, Judah Maccabee. Maybe I should make one, he was one of the Nine Worthies.

  2. Ah Ben, you're so much cooler than me. Even at Christmas. You should def make a Hannukah film! I'll help!

  3. Britt! When will I see you again?!

  4. You've pretty much captured my list.

  5. Oh my god, how could I've I forgotten the greatest Christmas movie of them all, Die Hard.
    "Now I have a machine gun, Ho-Ho-Ho"

  6. I was thiiiiiiiis close to including it!

  7. I'm totally with you on Love Actually! My three go to movies every Christmas: Merry Christmas Charlie Brown, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer and A Christmas Story. They all make me feel like I'm back home with my family.

  8. I like Whit Stillman's "Metro politan" and Woody Allen's "Love and Death".Also I like the Marx Brothers at Christmas, when I was growing up my favourite indie arthouse cinema in London always put on a Marx Brothers season.

  9. i thought that was catherine deneuve -- love her -- even tho it's more thxgiving i still love home for the holidays -- bishop's wife with cary grant, david niven and loretta young is hilarious, too...