Christmas

On Christmas Day, it’s a tradition in our family to watch Christmas movies at my parent’s house. For years, Christmas Vacation was our go-to movie. Then Four Christmases came out and we have been watching it every year since. Home Alone is one of my all-time faves though. I saw that movie so many times when I was a kid that I can actually recite most of the lines in that movie, which is not typical for me at all. I am one of those people that can barely remember what movies I have seen or what they were about six to nine months after watching them.

Of course I enjoy watching the classics like Miracle on 34th Street and It’s a Wonderful Life. The Christmas Story was actually filmed in Cleveland and is always makes it fun to watch, too. Love Actually is one of the newer romantic Christmas movies I like to watch every year.

What is your favorite Christmas movie? If you need help making your decision, I provided a list of the Top Ten Christmas Movies of All Time according to Stuff Magazine.

I chose this list because I was shocked by some of the movies that made the list. Maybe it will help you discover new Christmas movies to consider watching this year. Regardless, I wish all of you and your families a VERY MERRY CHRISTMAS!

Top Ten Christmas Movies of All Time
1. Die Hard
Die Hard is perfect! The fact that Die Hard is a Christmas film is sort of a bonus, because were it not, I’d still be trying to sandwich it awkwardly into this list. Bruce Willis, Alan Rickman, and a Christmas party gone horribly wrong. A disgraced cop with a heart of gold, angry blonde German dudes, explosions, pathos, troubles with your ex… it’s all here. If you’ve somehow not seen Die Hard, rest assured that it’s the best thing you can do on Christmas. Sit down, shut up, and experience the festive wonder. The bloody, traumatic, festive wonder.

2. It’s A Wonderful Life
Here’s the thing about It’s A Wonderful Life: it will reduce you to a blubbering mess. It’s a beautiful Christmas story about a fundamentally good guy getting screwed over, losing all hope, and having hope thrust back at him. The final scene kills me every time.

3. Home Alone
Home Alone is just sublime. John Hughes (Breakfast Club, Ferris Bueller, Sixteen Candles) brings tonnes of heart to this fable about a boy who decides to torture, maim and somehow not kill two burglars who, to be fair, were sort of asking for it. Again, I cannot stress enough how much heart this film has, how much Christmas spirit is has, and just how unfeasible it is that Pesci and Stern didn’t just give up and go home.

4. The Santa Clause
Clever, kind, generous and legitimately funny, The Santa Clause is a Christmas film I watch basically every year. Tim Allen is a heartless businessman who literally kills Santa, by accident, and due to an obscure legal clause (THE PUN WORKS ON SO MANY LEVELS) he begins to literally become Santa. The sequels aren’t great, especially the third one starring Martin Short as Jack Frost, but the original kicks arse.

5. Jingle All The Way
On paper, it sounds awful: Arnie is a shitty parent, and in an attempt to make amends to his as yet un-Annakined son Jake Lloyd, enters the last minute Christmas shopping fray to buy a Turboman action figure. Sinbad features prominently. And it really should suck, but it totally doesn’t; it’s sublimely nineties and ruthlessly cheesy, but holy hell is it uplifting.

6. Home Alone 2: Lost in New York
Thank god for the criminally negligent Bannister parents. Kevin is left to his own sociopathic but utterly heartfelt devices in New York, a city that, in 1992, was frankly still a wee bit on the dangerous side. Tim Currie stars as a ruthless hotel manager guy, Stern and Pesci bring the goods, and there’s a department store / gift-giving / homeless pigeon lady subplot that contains so much Christmas spirit I’m practically levitating just thinking about it.

7. The Muppet Christmas Carol
Another take on A Christmas Carol, this time starring Muppets (like, all of them), and Michael Caine as Ebenezer Scrooge. I want you to revisit that pitch: Michael Caine and muppets doing a heartwarming Dickensian fable for your viewing pleasure. I still remember my parents taking me to see this, and crying for hours afterwards because I couldn’t adequately process all the emotions I was feeling. Which might actually say more about me as a person than it does about the film, really.

8. Kiss Kiss Bang Bang
I know what you’re thinking: Kiss Kiss Bang Bang isn’t a Christmas film. Except – and it gives me great joy to say this – it absolutely is. The entire plot is kicked off because Harry Lockhart (Robert Downey Jr., in the role the reignited his career) is trying to steal a present for his kid. For Christmas. The rest of the film is riddled with Christmas references, making it a kind of post-noir Christmas detective action film. Which is just about the coolest genre ever.

9. Scrooged
The single best piece of Christmas fiction is A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens. This surreal, brash reinterpretation starring the single greatest human alive – Bill Murray – is terrific. Just watch it already.

10. Love Actually
Say what you will about the film itself (and lately, people seem to have been saying a whole lot about it), but this film is festive. Really festive. It’s pretty much possible to overdose in Christmas if you watch Love Actually; the decor, the music (Bill Nighy’s Christmas single, for one), the endless professions of Christmas-inspired love… it might be saccharine as hell but it sure gets the tone right.