Christmas movies are numerous and vary widely in quality and entertainment value – to put it mildly. For every great movie, there are dozens, if not hundreds, of Hallmark movies to throw away. But, there’s no shortage of great holiday picks to entertain you and your family this holiday season, so here are some of our own personal Christmas classics!
A Muppet Christmas Carol (1992)
Originally not entirely popular at the time (critics didn’t appreciate the film and audiences seemed lukewarm about it), it has now become a family classic enjoyed every year. It became the kind of cult movie that transcended its status and bounced back to become a huge hit for Jim Henson Studios (and Disney now owns it). What makes this one so great is that mix of whimsy with the classic performance of Michael Caine who played his character 100% seriously and directly while surrounded by marionettes. Splitting his performances with the puppets helps create that magic that can only work in the world of the Muppets. The music in this movie has become a part of most people’s go-to sounds this holiday season and the visuals here are just magical. There’s something so reassuring about having anything and a mouse, or Gonzo and Rizzo telling a story about Scrooge while arguing over food.
This is the movie that made Will Ferrell the biggest comedy star of the 2000s. While saying you love him is almost cliche now, he’s actually pretty cool. In all the absurdity and madness of this movie, somewhere between Will Ferrell in yellow tights and a shop that looks a lot like Macy’s lays out a story full of love, hope, and Christmas cheer. This movie is more than just overdone at times, but it’s part of what makes it work. The comedy has layers of jokes, nonsense, and physical gags that give it something for everyone. Is it a little too much? No, it’s way too much and it’s perfect that way. David Berenbaum’s writing and Jon Favreau’s direction show that there is a deep understanding that Christmas is not the same for everyone, but that it is always about hope and love. This movie is a celebration of family, classic holiday cheer, Santa Claus, and utterly absurd nonsense that would make anyone watching happier just for doing so. It’s the perfect first movie of the season or the first movie on Christmas morning with hot cocoa by the morning fire.
Batman Returns (1992)
from the same year The Muppet Christmas CarolAnd the Home Alone 2: Lost in New York, and a few other holiday movies, this one is a darker classic that many have loved 30 years later. It’s that weird mix of holiday and darkness, but without the obvious horror elements, it’s a comic book movie, but it’s also a Tim Burton movie with likable points and the now classic Danny Elfman script, it’s the kind of movie that’s perfect for when one’s had enough of all the cheer and all the cheer, For when one is just looking to break away from tradition, but is still looking for something that has the nostalgia factor it’s a great movie. The story here is well known, Batman has to face his most beloved foes, the Catwoman and the Penguin, but add to that that it’s set in Christmas time, it’s maddeningly dark and even gothic, and it’s neither cheery nor hopeful, and you get the perfect anti-Christmas movie. .
THE BEST MOVIE YOU HAVEN’T SEEN RELATELY – Pop into this movie and party like it’s 1999! Go is one of those movies that seems to fly under the radar, yet it’s a great party movie and a Christmas movie. The cast here is what will keep them coming back to the movie or making them watch it for the first time. They include Sarah Polley, Katie Holmes, Timothy Olyphant, Taye Diggs, James Duvall, Jay Mohr, Scott Wolf and a host of others. This movie has 3 interconnected stories so it might seem a little all over the place, but it all comes together in the end, making it one of those crazy games that is really fun. It’s got everything from Christmas music to a trip to Vegas and a drug deal gone wrong to a rave and hit and run to an MLM scheme. There is so much to this, it takes a few viewings to fully absorb it. The cast is definitely on point and great to watch. The fact that it’s a drug movie that plays around the holidays really helps make it easier to watch for those who aren’t all that into typical Christmas movies. You get a wild movie with a holiday touch to carry you through the season without hitting you over the head with all things Christmas.
Die Hard (1988)
“It’s not Christmas until I see Hans Gruber fall off Nakatomi Square” is something we’ve seen on the internet for a few years, and honestly, it’s true. Die Hard has become synonymous with Christmas and corporate holiday parties. It’s one of those movies that’s fun to watch once a year and seeing the bad guy get his picture is especially satisfying this time of year. The movie itself is a weird mix of action and Christmas music, it’s the kind of movie that takes the holiday season and makes it a simple backdrop for a hostage situation and for our hero to come and save the day. However, it did it better than most other Christmas action films, and Bruce Willis was at his best here, giving the angry hero performance that has become his signature ever since. It’s great here, the movie itself is entertaining over the first hour or a thousand, it’s a classic these days and absolutely perfect for hacking through the steady stream of Christmas past and all I want for Christmas everywhere. Some still believe Die hard Not a Christmas movie. Well, they are wrong.
Few contestants here Goodbye long kissAnd the miserAnd the 3615 Santa’s codeAnd the trevingAnd the Brentwood StranglerAnd the Shazam! What are your Christmas classics, your must-see movies this time of year?
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