Christmas is such a joyous time to spend with our friends and family. If you’re a cinephile like me, watching films will always be a great source of entertainment especially on holidays. I have only seen a total of 1000 films (I’m not kidding!) and these films are perfect to watch if you’re down to indulge in a movie marathon this Christmas.
From heartwarming classics to thrilling modern flicks, there’s something for everyone. So grab your popcorn, get cozy, and enjoy the magic of cinema!
- Little Women (2019), dir. Greta Gerwig
The film focuses on the life of Jo March (Saoirse Ronan) and her three sisters in the period following the American Civil War. If you enjoy heartwarming Christmas films centered on the joy of sisterhood, you’re likely to love this one. Plus, it is based on Louisa May Alcott’s Little Women which was published in 1868. If you love classic books then this one’s for you as well!
- Klaus (2019), dir. Sergio Pablos
Beautifully hand-drawn and poignant, Klaus tells a story of a desperate postman accidentally bringing about the genesis of Santa Claus.I’m a huge fan of animation films so I might be biased with this one. This made me cry so hard too.
- Home Alone (1990), dir. Chris Colombus
Written by John Hughes (you might know his film The Breakfast Club) and starring Macaulay Culkin, this lively holiday classic is essentially a child-friendly version of Straw Dogs. It tells the tale of a young boy from a large family who is repeatedly forgotten during the holiday season. In the film, when left home alone, the young boy ingeniously defends his home against burglars using a series of hilarious and creative traps.
- It’s a Wonderful Life (1946) dir. Frank Capra
It’s a Wonderful Life, released a year after World War II, offered hope to Americans dealing with the aftermath of global destruction. James Stewart starred as George Bailey, a man weighed down by despair. He finds a reason to live after meeting his guardian angel, Clarence Odbody (Henry Travers), who shows George the positive influence he has had on many people’s lives.
You may question why a film from the ’40s is on this list. It’s because it’s a Christmas classic directed by Capra, the man behind It Happened One Night and Arsenic and Old Lace!
- Love Actually (2003), dir. Richard Curtis
If you love to watch a classic rom com this Christmas, Love Actually definitely fits the bill. This 2003 film tells 10 separate stories that eventually all weave together, starring Hugh Grant, Liam Neeson, Colin Firth, Laura Linney, Emma Thompson, Alan Rickman and Keira Knightley.
- Rise of the Guardians (2012), dir. Peter Ramsay
Imagine a film where Santa Claus, the Tooth Fairy, the Easter Bunny, and the Sandman unite to protect children from darkness. This animated fantasy film presents reimagined versions of these legendary figures, collectively known as the Guardians, in a novel twist on the classic holiday movie. What if the guardians you believed in as a child were real? Watch this film to find out.
- Carol (2015), dir. Todd Haynes
Shot on 16 mm film, this tale of a store clerk (Rooney Mara) drawn to a married woman (Cate Blanchett) has quickly become a Christmas classic. This film presents an unconventional romance, beautiful cinematography, and explores love and identity during the holidays.
- The Muppet Christmas Carol (1992), dir. Brian Henson
Michael Caine’s portrayal of Scrooge, Gonzo the Great’s role as Charles Dickens, and Kermit the Frog’s performance as Bob Cratchit are just a few factors that make this interpretation of the timeless tale so endearing and clever. Surprisingly, despite the inclusion of Muppets, it’s one of the adaptations that stays truest to the original text.
- Black Christmas (1974), dir. Bob Clark
Looking for a slasher film to watch during the Christmas season? Black Christmas might be what you’re after. As one of the first ever slasher films, it features a sorority house being terrorized by a holiday season killer. The ending still gives me chills.
- Elf (2003), dir. Jon Favreau
Will Ferrell’s portrayal of a naive, oversized elf looking for his father in New York City adds a humorous touch to this comedy. However, the film goes beyond mere laughs, with a strong emphasis on the spirit of the holiday season. In a category often filled with generic sentimentality, this contemporary Christmas film stands out for its authentic sweetness.
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