Best Christmas Movies Ever?

Christmas is just over two weeks away (and no I don't have those outdoor Christmas lights up yet, which means they'll never make it up), and we're knee-deep in the holiday season, which means Christmas movies. Not sure what Christmas movies are in the theaters this year, except for an animated Christmas Carol with Jim Carrey as the voice of Scrooge, which is supposed to be quite good. Although the movie I took all those 11 and 12-yr old boys to last week, The Blind Side, is not technically a "Christmas" movie, it's still a Christmas movie. I mean the sentiment is there - it's incredibly touching and heart-warming.

Still there are plenty of Christmas movies on TV, and I'll be sure to start looking for my favorites, which include:

  • It's a Wonderful Life - I'm not a huge classic movie buff (that would be my husband, although he mainly likes old Westerns and WWII movies), but this is definitely one of my favorite Christmas movies. Jimmy Stewart is so good; you just can't help feeling for the guy. I love the message of how each of us can make a difference in someone else's life, and we may not even realize it. (I like other oldies like Miracle on 34th Street and White Christmas, but they're not in my tops.)

  • Mr. Magoo's Christmas Carol - (technically not a movie) It may seem weird, but my favorite version of Charles Dickens' story is this cartoon version with Jim Backus as the voice of Scrooge. It was first broadcast on TV in 1962, and it's a musical version with songs written specifically for the show. I loved this program when I was a kid, and my family watched it every year it was on. I like the music, and the Ghost of Christmas Future is downright scary - always gave me the chills. But of course, eveything ends happily.

  • Elf - This is a fairly recent movie with Will Farrell as an overgrown elf. It's funny and sweet. (Hilarious scene when Buddy the elf mistakes a "vertically challenged" corporate executive as another elf.)

  • Fred Clause - Another recent movie with Vince Vaughn as Fred Clause (Santa's brother) and Paul Giamatti as Santa. Love it when Fred goes to the North Pole and takes over Santa's workshop!

  • Love Actually - I love this movie - a bunch of mini love stories in one movie set during Christmas. My favorite stories are the one with Hugh Grant as the Prime Minister and Colin Firth as a writer, and especially the overriding story of Billy, the resurrected rock star and his schmaltzy Christmas single. Not all the stories have happy endings, but it's a feel-good movie and the ending sequence is magic, which is set to The Beach Boys' "God Only Knows."

I'll leave you with a clip from Love Actually and one of my favorite Christmas songs. What are your favorite Christmas movies?


Laura Breck said...

Hi Carol, Thanks for the video - I needed something to get me recharged this morning! My publisher is having a contest and us authors (good English, huh?) got to put a picture of our favorite holiday movie on our websites, and I couldn't resist choosing Holiday Inn. It's an old one (your husband would like it, I'm sure) it's totally un-politically correct, and schmaltzy, but something about Bing Crosby and Fred Astair trying to win the love of the same girl, and the cozy inn...makes my holidays bright.

Happy Holidays!

Mason Canyon said...

There are so many good Christmas movies out there, old and fairly new. Here are some of mine in no order:
Christmas Vacation
Bishop's Wife
Santa Claus (Tim Allen)
White Christmas
Miracle on 34th Street (original)

Donna Marie Rogers said...

All right, I'm a big kid, but I love A Charlie Brown Christmas. LOL And, of course, A Christmas Story. I'm not big on classic movies either, but my MIL sure is. Which is nice because my daughters are always watching some sweet Christmas movie with her. :-)

Carol Ericson said...

Laura, I've never seen Holiday Inn, but I sure enjoy Bing Crosby singing White Christmas.

Carol Ericson said...

Mason, you've chosen all those old classics (except The Santa Clause, which is cute). The original Miracle on 34th is definitely the best version.

Carol Ericson said...

Donna, A Charlie Brown Christmas is great. I haven't seen that in years, and I don't think my kids have ever seen it! Maybe I should remedy that this year.

Stacey Joy Netzel said...

I have to say I love the movie Holiday, with Jack Black, Cameron Diaz, Kate Winslet and Jude Lawe. Total romance chick flick, but even my husband loved it when I didn't expect him to.

And my second favorite to watch around the holidays, The Sound of Music.

Carol Ericson said...

Stacey, I love Holiday too. My favorite scene is when Jude Law is leaving in the car and Cameron Diaz runs through the snow after him (and their first night together!). said...

I am a Christmas nut, so love to talk about Christmas movies. :-) I love A Christmas Story too, like Donna! Carol, if you haven't seen, it, you should get it when you get A Charlie Brown Christmas (another of my favs.)

I also really love A Muppets Christmas Carol. :-)

Our fav Christmas Carol version is the 1950's one, with Alastair Sim. Wonderful and atmospheric.

It's A Wonderful Life, of course, is at the top of my list. And I totally, completely love Nat'l Lampoon's Christmas Vacation. :-) We repeat lines from that movie all the time. "We needed a coffin-- I mean, a tree . . . " So funny.

And although not a movie, I absolutely love Rick Steves' European Christmas. You can often get it through PBS channels this time of year, with a pledge, or on his website. Very very cool. My favorite part is when they come sledding down the Alps as twilight falls, with their Christmas tree, lighting their way by carrying torches. Amazing.

Carol Ericson said...

Kris, Oh yeah National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation is very funny!

Sandy said...

Any of the movies with Bing Crosby and Bob Hope. I know there's one at Christmas with those two. There comedic timing couldn't be beat.

Nicole North said...

Great post! I'm not a big fan of older movies. A couple of my favorites are Love Actually and The Holiday. I also like the comedies like Elf and Fred Claus. I love the song from the video you posted.

Lexi said...

I love the Alistair Sim version of A Christmas Carol (Okay, I love ALL versions of A Christmas Carol), The Holiday, It's a Wonderful Life. This year I've gotten addicted to the 12 Men of Christmas.