Everyone has their favorite Christmas movies, at the end of 2022 I decided to create my favorite list, and here they are.
A Christmas Story – So many childhood memories; the multi-prong electrical outlets, galoshes, snow everywhere, the many, many layers of winter clothing, sending away for things via mail (Orphan Annie decoder ring), school essays, and the love of parents. I triple-dog dare you to not like this one.
The Homecoming: Walton’s Christmas – Simple times. Grab a glass (or two) of the Baldwin sister’s ‘recipe’ and enjoy.
It’s A Wonderful Life – For the longest time, this was my number one! A very powerful remembrance of how we all affect other people’s lives.
Joyeux Noel – This is what peace feels like.
The Snowman & Father Christmas – I paired these animated British films together for the best viewing enjoyment. No words are needed.
White Christmas – Bing Crosby’s “White Christmas”, nothing more needs to be said.
A Charlie Brown Christmas – Stands alone; pulled out from my childhood grouping of movies. Linus’ message tells the story. Side pleasures; Snoopy’s doghouse decorations, Charlie Brown’s tree (I convinced the family to go with one of these one Christmas, and we enjoyed it) and Pig Pen’s dance moves.
Scrooged – I like many, a lot of Bill Murray movies. Murray’s character transformation throughout the film delivers a very strong depiction of Scrooge’s softening. Carol Kane’s Ghost of Christmas Present and her toaster, belly kiss, and the head knock – great slapstick.
A Christmas Carol – I like all versions (Muppets, Alastair Sim, Albert Finney, Bugs Bunny, Patrick Stewart, George C. Scott, Robert Zemeckis, Mister Magoo, Mickey Mouse) and will not try and put one in front of another.
Die Hard – Absolutely! This movie sets the stage for those unconventional “Christmas” movies (Trading Places, Lethal Weapon, Black Christmas, Kiss Kiss Bang Bang…).
A Christmas Story Christmas – The 2022 “sequel” is a very good homage to the 1983 original.
Elf – Repeatable and quotable lines; kind of an audience participation movie. You just have to believe.
Childhood Group: The following list represent my childhood annual Christmas viewings. How the Grinch Stole Christmas, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, The Little Drummer Boy and Frosty the Snowman
The Nightmare Before Christmas – Excellent stop-motion. An imaginative and creative Tim Burton story. Oogie Boogie’s unraveling.
National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation – Good laughs. Poor Clark and his efforts to deliver a good Christmas.
The Polar Express – Tom Hanks, ticket taker, guides this dream-like feel. A very good animated story.
Miracle on 34th Street – A good movie with a good message, but I don’t put at the top of my list like many lists do.
Klaus – Good animation, good story, good pace; fit like a comfortable blanket.
The Santa Claus – Only really like this first in the 3-movie series.
Trading Places – This, like ‘Die Hard’ bend some of the traditional boundaries of what constitutes a Christmas movie.
Home Alone – I like to count the number of possible injuries the bad guys experience at the hands of Kevin. I think the number is around 85.
The Deviant Twist: Krampus, Rare Exports and Bad Santa – putting these together as they present a true twist on communicating the Christmas message.
Christmas with the Kranks – Some good laughs, and c’mon, how many of us have thought about escaping to the islands to get away from winter.