Whether your house was decorated in November or you are planning on putting up a single bauble around Christmas Eve time, there is one thing that brings festive cheer to even the most Scrooge-like revellers – Christmas films! Since most of us have been watching the same films for years (if not decades), we all have a personal preference, so in no particular order, here are the top ten Christmas films to watch over the season to be jolly…
A classic, a love story, a masterpiece! An all-star British cast (with one American, hey Laura Linney!) join together to tell many, many stories of love over Christmas, from unrequited longing that has long been considered creepy (we're looking at you Andrew Lincoln), to love of family and friendship. From has-been rock stars to the Prime Minister of Great Britain, the stories are woven together brilliantly as is one to watch again and again!
Muppets Christmas Carol
The most classic of all of the Charles Dicken's adaptations sees Michael Caine in the role of his lifetime as Ebenezer Scrooge, a misery human among Muppets who is visited by ghosts on Christmas Eve in order to change his ways in time for Christmas. This adaptation isn't just hilarious, it is also one of the many adaptations of the novel that remains closest to the books. What makes it even better is how seriously Sir Michael takes the role. Speaking to The Guardian, the film's director, Brian Henson, said: "When I met Michael Caine to talk about playing Scrooge, one of the first things he said was, I'm going to play this movie like I'm working with the Royal Shakespeare Company. I will never wink, I will never do anything Muppety. I am going to play Scrooge as if it is an utterly dramatic role and there are no puppets around me.'"
This 1984 comedy horror has become something of a cult classic, probably because of how weird a concept it is. An inventor picks up a gift for his teenage son Billy – a little Mogwai by the name of Gizmo. While Gizmo is very cute and sings wearing a Santa hat and is simply a precious cinnamon roll who must be protected, Billy is something of an irresponsible owner and breaks one of the main rules of Mogwai ownership; never, NEVER feed them after midnight. Cue the hundreds of devilish gremlins wrecking havoc in the little town of Kingston Falls. This film has everything – Christmas cheer, cute critters and a bunch of Gremlins singing along to Snow White. Wait, what?!
KEVIN! The film that launched a thousand quotable moments sees Kevin McCallister accidentally left at home by his family as they head on vacation for the holidays. While Kevin's mum desperately tries to make her way make to him after realising their colossal mistake, the youngster has to deal with two dim burglars trying their best to break into his home by setting up some ingenious booby-traps.
Will Ferrell stars in (probably) his most wholesome role as Buddy the Elf in Elf, who was raised in the North Pole with elves before discovering that he is actually human, and sent to meet his father (who is on the naughty list, not good). It is a classic tale of winning over a grumpy old man who hates Christmas with a little bit of singing Christmas cheer out loud for all to hear, and is the perfect family film to enjoy during a cosy night in.
How the Grinch Stole Christmas
Jim Carrey absolutely OWNS the Grinch in this film. While the folks of Whoville get ready for Christmas, the Grinch resides along in the mountains (with his dog, of course) and decides to ruin everyone's fun by stealing all of the Christmas presents. The film is hilarious and the Grinch is basically the voice of the Millennial generation, just ask Twitter.
The Nightmare Before Christmas
Perfect of Christmas and Halloween alike, this creepy cult animation follows Jack Skellington, from Halloween Town, who discovers Christmas Town and determines to bring the festivities hope with him. Unfortunately, his peers don't quite seem to 'get it'. Cue tiny monster children planning on kidnap 'Mr Sandy Claws' and everything going disastrously wrong.
The Christmas Prince
Everyone watched The Christmas Prince on Netflix last year and had the same opinion – it's so bad that it's good. As such, this rom-com set at Christmas has become something of a smash hit and has even landed itself an (even worse) sequel. The story follows Amber, a journalist who goes to the charming European country of Aldovia in the hopes of getting a scoop on the handsome prince, Richard, and accidentally cons the royal family into believing that she is Richard's younger sister's new tutor. Unsurprisingly, chaos ensures!
The Christmas Chronicles
New to Netflix, but an instant classic. This Santa film stars Kurt Russell as a sarcastic Santa Claus who gets into trouble on Christmas Eve after a brother and sister pair accidentally make him crash his sleigh. Cue singing in prison, adorable elves with chainsaws and a lot of confused police officers. Oh, and has tissues at the ready, because the sweet story will definitely bring a tear or two!
The Santa Clause
After a single dad, Scott, accidentally causes Santa to fall off the roof, he puts on the red suit and accidentally signs himself up to becoming the new Father Christmas, and will have 11 months to sort out his life before he becomes Santa for good. During that time, Scott begins to gain white, grow a white beard and gain a craving for milk and cookies. This is a sweet family film made hilarious by Tim Allen, and is definitely worth dusting off that old DVD every year!
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