One of my favourite activities leading up to Christmas is watching Christmas movies. Animated cartoons, black and white classics, modern takes on the season, it doesn’t matter, if it’s Christmas themed I’m all over it. But what to watch? Here are some Fabulous Christmas movies you can enjoy with the whole family.
|Animated Christmas Movies
Just because the characters are 2-D drawings in primary colours doesn’t mean the movie is childish. Some of our favourite family Christmas movies are the animated variety. Some obvious classic animated Christmas movies are A Charlie Brown Christmas and Dr. Suess’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas. The Christmas Orange, Olive the Other Reindeer, Arthur’s Perfect Christmas Movie and A Year Without a Santa Claus are popular in our home. Some great animated Christmas movies that focus on the Christmas story are The Little Drummer Boy and Nester the Long Eared Donkey but I warn you, you’ll tear-up watching these. I always do. Cosmic Christmas from the NFB is another must watch film though sadly it’s really hard to find (I found you can watch online here).
|Classic Christmas Movies
For me, it’s just not Christmas without watching a few classic Christmas movies like It’s a Wonderful Life, Miracle on 34th Street (1947) and The Bishop’s Wife (1947). I also love those musical classics too. Holiday Inn and White Christmas are at the top of my list. Some other classics that make our must watch list include Christmas in Connecticut, Meet me in St. Louis, and The Bells of St. Mary’s.
|Christmas Carol Movies
An obvious Christmas classic is A Christmas Carol but there are so many great version of it out there. A Christmas Carol (1951) with Alister Sims will always be the original version in our family, though I know the original was made in 1938. A Christmas Carol starring George C. Scott (1984) is also good and has just come out on Bluray. Patrick Stewart also did a version of A Christmas Carol (1999) which isn’t bad. Scrooge (1970) with Albert Finney is a great musical version (I love the song Thank You Very Much) and Bill Murray does a very funny job in Scrooged (1988) a modern take on the classic story. For the kids there’s Mickey’s Christmas Carol (1983), Disney’s A Christmas Carol and The Muppet Christmas Carol (1992) but parents will enjoy these versions too.
|Modern Christmas Movies
The classics are wonderful but there are some great modern Christmas movies too. If you’re looking to have a good laugh during the holidays then Elf, Jingle All the Way, Christmas Vacation and A Christmas Story must definitely be on your movie list. The Nightmare Before Christmas is a great film to transition from Halloween into Christmas too (we watch it during both holidays). Christmas with the Kranks is an interesting take on trying to avoid Christmas.
|Christmas Movie Sequels and Remakes
I’m usually not a big fan of remaking a classic film; usually I’m such a fan of the original I find it hard for the remake to live up to my expectations. Miracle on 34th Street (x) is an exception. It’s the same story as the original but updated to modern times. Jim Carry‘s How the Grinch Stole Christmas is also a fun non-animated adaption of Dr. Suess‘ classic animated film. The Santa Clause series with Tim Allen, Santa Clause (1994), Santa Clause 2 (2002) and Santa Clause 3: The Escape Clause (2006), do a great job in all three films, though I must admit the 3rd isn’t my favourite. Home Alone series with Macaulay Culkin, Home Alone (1990) and Home Alone 2: Lost in New York (1992), will have the kids laughing and making battle plans and booby traps of their own. There is a Home Alone 3 but having a different child star just doesn’t interest me.
These are just a few great Christmas movies to enjoy one wintery, snowy night. I’m sure you have a few films of your own you enjoy. Please feel free to share them below in the comments section so others, including myself, can enjoy them too.