Wednesday, December 24, 2008

My Favorite Christmas Movies

These are the Christmas movies I tend to watch on a fairly regular basis. Many of them I watch even when it is not Christmas. I don't have them in any particular order. The reason for this is because determining which one is my favorite kind of depends on my mood at the time.

The original Scrooge. Classic and timeless and really hard to find on a channel unless you have it on DVD.


Scrooged is probably my favorite remake of all the Scrooge remakes. Carol Kane is hilarious and Bill Murray can definitely play an ass. Buster Poindexter also makes it really worthwhile.
Wonderful Life. Growing up this seemed like the only Christmas movie that was ever on. I still like it a lot but it is not something I watch every year. I usually need to give it a year off.
If I were to pick a favorite Christmas movie. If someone said you have to pick one. I couldn't. I have a tie among three, but The Ref is in those three. Incredible movie.
Santa Clause is about one of the only things I can bear to watch with Tim Allen. It is a good movie but is the kind you usually watch while wrapping presents and it doesn't matter if you miss five or ten minutes here and there.
You won't believe this. But this was the first year I watched Nightmare Before Christmas and I really liked it. Not in the top three but much better than I thought it would be.
I threw Love Actually in here to make a point about Christmas movies. Love Actually takes place around the holidays, but that does not really mean you should call every movie that does, a Christmas movie. Die Hard is a great movie, but I'm not sure you would consider it a Christmas movie. Same with Batman Returns or whatever the hell that movie is with Katie Holmes.
Barely out of my top 3 is Joyeux Noel which is the true story of a truce during World War I. If you have never seen this movie, you need to.
Home Alone is a classic and I never get tired of watching it.
I like Elf a lot. Not in love with it. Although if The Zooey showed up at my basement in her elf outfit I could be persuaded to change my mind.
Christmas Vacation is definitely in my top 3. Love this movie.
I used to love Christmas Story. Loved it. Then TNT or one of the cable channels started showing it for 24 hours straight and now they have Wonderful Life'd it for me. It is down to a once every three year viewing now.
Definitely in my top 3. I absolutely love this movie.

30 comments:

BlackseatDriver said...

A Christmas story does it for me, wonderfully done, and ahead of it's time, I think. I do agree that it's becoming worn out as TBS runs it Christmas Eve and Christmas day. I cant remember correctly but I believe the producer and his son were killed in a DUI in 2007? The other driver was not hurt.

JW said...

White Christmas
Christmas Vacation
Meet me in St. Louis

amster said...

Christmas Story
It's a Wonderful Life
Miracle on 34th St
Smoky Mountain Christmas(don't say it)
White Christmas
Little Match Girl
Santa Claus 1
usually like what is shown on Lifetime or Hallmark during the holidays.

Majik said...

It's a Wonderful Life is the best movie. Evah.

Another "holiday but not holiday" movie for me is Little Women, the June Allyson version, not the Katherine Hepburn or Winona Ryder versions (although I don't mind the WR one...except for WR).

Never seen Bad Santa. Maybe I'll do that tomorrow.

Happy Ho Ho everyone.

BlackseatDriver said...

I love Scrooged, but I hated the political statements interspersed throughout the movie..I get it already..Free Africa..Apartheid and Nelson Mandela.. whatever..quit with the hammer already..

Ernestine said...

I LOVE Bad Santa. YES! I'm sort of a Scrooge -- not in a totally bah humbug way, but in a I just sort of forget about Christmas until it gets here and I stress out until December 26th kind of way. So Billy Bob's take on things really turns my key.

I'm still besotted with A Christmas Story, but I also haven't had cable in about five years or so. I can understand being Ralphie-d out via TNT.

The best Christmas Story, in my opinion, is actually an essay, kinda: The Santaland Diaries, by David Sedaris. Hooooly crap! It's sidesplitting; you'll look like a total giggling doofus if you read it on the plane or something.

selenakyle said...

Tim Burton's Nightmare Before Christmas is my all-time fave. I know every line of dialogue and every song.

Tim Allen in Santa Clause (first one ONLY--the sequels sucked balls) is a close second.

Also a fan of the crappy Jingle All the Way, just cuz it's cute.

And for Christmas Carol--I love the Reginald Owen version from 1938-ish.

Merry Christmas and Happy new Year, Enty!
Love & kisses, sk

BlackseatDriver said...

I liked Little Women with Winona Ryder, but was bothered by her characters habit of raiding the local country store of high end petticoats..

BlackseatDriver said...

Ernstine,
Amy Sedaris (Davids sister) wrote a book on Hospitality called I Like You, and I swear to god...it is so funny..Unfortunately I cant go into explicit details..She's great in Strangers with Candy too...

DNfromMN said...

Bad Santa, Christmas Story, and The Ref. But yeah, I've overseen Christmas Story. More like every 3-4 years for me.

equinox said...

Elf
Christmas Vacation
A Christmas Story (and I love the 24 hour run)

Merlin D. Bear said...

Miracle on 34th Street - (the original, black and white, not colorized or updated/remade) gets me every time. If I'm channel surfing and I see it, that's where I stop until the movie's over.

The Santa Clause (I'm ashamed to admit I have the whole series)

White Christmas - the original

Ernestine said...

Blackseat, I bought that Amy Sedaris book for a friend this Christmas (partly so I could read it, *shhhhh*)!! Amy is HHHHIIIILARIOUS. I actually think she's funnier than her brother, in a more bombastic way or something. Have you seen her on Letterman? She wears gigantic tutus and talks about THE wackiest shit. I LOVE her.

Ernestine said...

P.S. Oh, and I forgot to say that Strangers with Candy is bizarre, hysterical, slightly disturbing, and that I adore it, too. The movie was lame, though. They should have just left the show alone.

Sorry about the digression. Back to Christmas movies.

jagerlilly said...

And here I thought I was the only one that loved The Ref. Took my husband to see it when it was in the theaters...he's now my ex-husband. Just one of many differences, lol. Bad Santa - Brilliant! Watching it again tonight with a good bottle of tequila. BBT as Santa reminds me of Dan Akroyd in the Santa Suit in Trading Places. True classic. Merry Christmas, all!

jax said...

babes in toyland
miracle on 34th
white christmas
bad santa
the ref
christmas vacation

great minds think alike!
i aslo love home for the holidays.

BlahFrickinBlah said...

Bad Santa and Christmas Vacation.

The Year w/o Santa Claus (with the Heat Miser!) pwns all of them though.

Lucy said...

What a great list - gives me something to do as we sit under several feet of snow. And watch more come down.

What about the Grinch? That's one of the best, in my opinion.

I remember, as a child, being terrified by Marley's ghost in A Christmas Carol.

Merry Happy, everyone, and thanks for all the great posts and comments. The niceness of the readers on this blog inspired me to finally stop lurking and add my own comments.

Jewels said...

White Christmas. I watch it with my mom EVERY year. Except this year, since I'll be here in Niagara Falls, and she'll be there, in Qu├ębec... sniff! I miss my mommy :(

However, you've cheered me up with your list Enty.
Merry hoho and happy Yuletides to all

*leaves singing "kidnap the Sandy Clause, throw him in a box! Lock'im up for 40 years, and see if he talks...*

;)

Harriet Hellfire said...

Watching "Elf" and "Bad Santa" has become an annual tradition in the Hellfire household. But I think my all time favourite is "Scrooged". I mean, come on. It's Bill Murray.

audieh_1 said...

Christmas Story is a yearly must in our house. I like Home Alone and the Santa Clause. I am Christmas Caroled out no matter what format it may appear in.

Caroline said...

I love The Ref! The husband and I watched it this past weekend.

"Who do you think you are?"
"Slipper socks. Medium."
Bwahahahaha!

I also love
-Miracle on 34th Street(the original with Natalie Wood)
-Bad Santa
-Peanuts Christmas (I am listening to the soundtrack right now)

bionic bunny! said...

christmas vacation
white christmas
scrooged (but i'm a huge bill murray [AND all the murrays, especially brian] fan!)

and yes, the boob tube is inevitably tuned to lifetime for all the sappy holiday movies!
at the doctor's office monday, they were playing "the santa clause" in the waiting room. everybody was watching and laughing, and i thought that was really cool!

Yellow Rose said...

Has nobody seen "Mixed Nuts"?? It is one of my favorite movies, period, but it is tied with "Christmas Vacation" for favorite Christmas movies-"Scrooged" is a close 3rd. Our family watches the 1st 2 every single Christmas, usually multiple times.

Since no one else mentioned it-"Mixed Nuts" is a comedy from the early 90s, directed by Nora Ephron. It stars Steve Martin, Rita Wilson, Madeline Kahn (LOVED her), Anthony LaPaglia, Juliette Lewis, Rob Reiner, & Liev Schreiber (as a hilarious cross-dresser). Adam Sandler, Parker Posey, Jon Stewart & Joely Fisher also have bit parts. The setting is Venice Beach, CA at a non-profit suicide hotline called "Live Savers" that has just been evicted (Steve Martin, Rita Wilson & Madeline Kahn are the only 3 employees). If you ever get a chance-watch it, it is absolutely hilarious. (Just looked it up-it came out 12/21/94, sadly, on imdb, there's a link to "The Worst Holiday Movies" when you're on the "Mixed Nuts" page....sigh. I always seem to love comedies that are a little off-"So I Married an Axe Murderer" is one of my fav's-which also stars Anthony LaPaglia, I just realized)

becki626 said...

Speaking of Ben Affleck,
"Surviving Christmas" didn't do too well when it came out-OK it bombed but now we watch it every year around this time. It has a silly wrong Family Guy dysfuntional feel to it.
Just listening to James Gandolfini's labored breathing in between reciting his lines is worth it!

KellyLynn said...

It's A Wonderful Life is my all-time favorite movie, not just for Christmas. Who hasn't felt like George Bailey at some point in his or her life?
I'm also glad you mentioned Love Actually, because I'm a fan of that one, too. I like Miracle on 34th Street in black and white and Holiday Inn/White Christmas, but I can go a Christmas without seeing them.
My guy loves A Christmas Story, but I'm pretty much over it. While we were watching that movie a little bit earlier this evening, he mentioned that Peter Billingsley must be getting up there in years by now, since that movie is sooooo old. I looked up his bio to see how old he is now.
I told my guy, "Yeah, Peters's getting "up there", all right. That actor is only two years older than me." My guy (who is 7 years younger than me) thought that was awfully funny.

nancykate said...

Has anyone ever seen the old Christmas Eve on Sesame Street from 1978? I just finished watching it - it's an every year tradition for me before I go to bed on Christmas Eve. Always get a little choked up and laugh out loud when Cookie can't get through writing/typing/calling Santa without eating his pencil/typewriter/phone.

Jewels said...

Can't believe I forgot, and nobody's mentioned this one either. Polar Express. We watch it all year round, but it's a great Xmas movie

shakey said...

One movie I absolutely love but is rarely on tv is Bernard and The Genie with Alan Cumming and Lenny Henry. Very funny movie.

Mooshki said...

During my Kevin Spacey infatuation, I probably watched "The Ref" 30 times.

I like "The Bishop's Wife," with Cary Grant. (The Denzel remake sucked balls.)