We know not everyone celebrates Christmas, but for most this will be a fun and festive long weekend, and it’s hard to resist the holiday spirit.
For those who are celebrating, what better way to spend Christmas Eve than by kicking back with a holiday movie after dinner? So we decided we’d share our list of favorite holiday movies. Some you can watch with the kids, and for the others you might want to put them to bed first. We hope we found something for everyone.
Charlie Brown’s Christmas (1965)
All Ages – Animated
For the Peanuts fans, it just wouldn’t be Christmas without this classic. Christmas lights may be twinkling but Charlie Brown is feeling blue. To try and get into the holiday spirit, he takes Lucy’s advice and directs the Christmas play. Needless to say not everything goes according to plan.
Arthur Christmas (2011)
All Ages – animated
Probably one of the best kids Christmas movies ever made (from a grown-up’s perspective, anyway). It’s got everything, Christmas spirit, comedy, adventure, a dysfunctional family (the Santas), and an answer to that age old question “How does Santa deliver all the presents in one night?”
Home Alone (1990)
You probably watched this yourself as a kid and felt like taking on the world! An eight-year-old troublemaker (Macaulay Culkin, back when he was a cute kid) must protect his house from a pair of burglars when he is accidentally left home alone by his family during Christmas vacation. The results are nothing short of hilarious, especially if you’re a kid yourself.
The Holiday (2006)
Looking for a classic Chick Flick holiday movie? This could be the one for you.
Two women decide to exchange houses for the holidays in order to get a new lease on life. While each suffers from a minor case of culture shock, both women also end up finding a new outlook on life, enjoying their own holiday romances along the way.
Love Actually (2003)
Rating: R (S,N,L)
If you’re looking for a Romantic Christmas movie that will make you laugh, score points with your girlfriend, and bring home the Christmas spirit, this is it. When it first came out, Love Actually brought with it a new trend in movie narrative. Billed as “The ultimate romantic comedy” Love Actually involves more than a dozen main characters, each weaving his or her way into another’s heart over the course of one particularly eventful Christmas.
PG (but it’s a little scary for small kids)
“Don’t expose him to bright light. Don’t ever get him wet. And don’t ever, ever feed him after midnight.”
A young man receives a cute, furry creature called a Mogwai as a gift, but fails to follow one of the three rules of raising it: he feeds the mystery pet after midnight. This leads to the rapid spawning of evil, destructive Gremlins. You will not finish the movie hoping to find a Mogwai under the tree.
The Nightmare before Christmas (1993)
PG (but it’s a little scary for small kids)
This is probably Tim Burton’s best loved animated creation. Some may find it macabre, but there are those of us for whom this movie will always be on the holiday watch list.
Despite having recently presided over a very successful Halloween, Jack Skellington, aka the Pumpkin King, is bored with his job and feels that life in Halloweenland lacks meaning. Then he stumbles upon Christmastown and promptly decides to make the Yuletide his own. Will Halloween take over Christmas?
Funny Girl (1968)
Although not strictly a holiday movie, Funny Girl is just one of those classics that you should try to find time for in your life – and what better time to do that, than over a long weekend?!
Ever wonder where the line “Hello, gorgeous” came from? This is it. This flick won 8 Oscars and helped solidify Barbra Streisand as film icon for all time. This musical (every holiday needs a musical) has Babs singing “people” and “Don’t rain on my parade” while she reminds the world that there is more to being famous than having a pretty face.
The Wedding Singer (1998)
Okay so it’s not really a traditional holiday movie, but it is a real “feel-good” rom-com, and it’s jam packed with old school 80’s music that we all secretly love to listen to, whether we admit it or not! Also, it includes an appearance by Billy Idol, as himself.
Set in 1985, Adam Sandler plays a nice guy with a broken heart who’s stuck in one of the most romantic jobs in the world, a wedding singer. He loses all hope when he is abandoned at the altar by his fiancé. He meets a young woman named Julia (Drew Barrymore), who enlists his help to plan her wedding.
Die Hard (1988)
Rating: R (L,N,V)
Yes, it IS a Christmas movie! It starts on December 24th and involves a holiday party gone (very) wrong! Bruce Willis plays a die-hard cop (pun intended) who happens to be taken hostage at the event. The archetypal action movie, that happens to be at Christmas. Do we really need to tell you more? Just watch it already!
Where to find your Flick
**Thank you to Rotten Tomatoes for the movie info.