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Top Ten Holiday Films

Updated on September 29, 2013

Top Ten Holiday Films of All Time

I admit it the holidays overwhelm me like a title wave from the sea. To escape I sit down and watch the old Holiday Classics. Although this year promises to bring new classics to the box office, I want to review my old favorite Holiday films of all time.

Every single Christmas Eve, yes I celebrate Christmas; I watch It’s a Wonderful Life with Jimmy Stewart. It is perhaps my favorite Christmas film of all time.

I think that holiday films are an intrinsic part of creating the holiday spirit. As many of you are well aware my son has autism and is non-verbal. The way we would prepare him for the holidays is we would start putting on holiday films. We also did this so we could decorate the tree or wrap his presents while he was occupied. His favorite film of all time was the Grinch Who Stole Christmas as he felt it truly encapsulated the Yule Tide spirit.

In this hub we will review, what I believe to be, the top ten classic holiday films of all time.

It's a Wonderful Life

Remeber This Scene From An Affair to Remember?

An Affair to Remember

But then I remember “An Affair to Remember” and while not billed as a Holiday film it does have Christmas as a back drop in it so I also love this one and count it as well. I know for a practical girl it is unusual that I like romantic films but Cary Grant is Christmas to most of us girls.

This particular film has some of the most witty banter that I has ever been written in a romantic film.

Action Movies

For action Christmas flicks which is complete escapism entertainment, I enjoy all the Lethal Weapons as well as the Die Hard series. It is always good when the bad guys bite the dust especially at the Holidays. Why is it Hollywood is always so interested in blowing up things at Christmas. It probably has something to do with the red and green Christmas Tree. For a great holiday diversion, the action films: Lethal Weapon and Die Hard.

Die Hard

Lethal Weapon

Lethal Weapon 1




I will also throw in Scrooged or as I like to call him frugal with Bill Murray. Murray is always hysterically funny and puts a new twist on an old classic. He really does this film justice and it is a classic. A story of a greedy ambitious CEO who has a change of heart at Christmas. It is so appropriate for this Christmas, Santa should leave one in everyone’s stocking.

Reindeer Games

Reindeer Games

Reindeer Games which is not typically billed as a Christmas film is a really good film for the Holidays. I am not normally a Ben Affleck fan but it is the holidays this is a must see. Charlize Theron is excellent in this film but a the message is a little too pedantic.

Reindeer Games

Nightmare Before Christmas

And I also love a Nightmare Before Christmas by Time Burton. I think this film is absolutely brilliant. It is the perfect film for escapism during the Holiday season for everyone in your family.

A Nightmare Before Christmas

What I Left Out

Yes, i realize our list of favorite holiday classics is much different then yours. For instance we do not watch Miracle on 34th street. We actually have the DVD and do not watch it. My son doesn't believe in Santa therefore it makes the film a non starter in our house.

Also a Christmas Story which is a classic we do not watch mainly because I am against my son ever having to hold a riffle let alone knowing about the perils of shooting one's eye out with a BB gun.

Frosty the Snow man gets no play because if you don't believe in Santa, Frosty is a bit hard to believe in. Snow is a non starter in Florida too. The same goes with Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer and Santa Clause Is Coming to Town as well as The Night Before Christmas. They are all non starters in our home.

My Son's Favorite Christmas Films

For my son though it is a completely different line up.

I doubt he would even miss Christmas if it wasn’t for the classic The Grinch Who Stole Christmas: with Jim Carey. My son has always had a crush on the little Cindy Lu Who. My son just thinks that film is hysterical. I found the film a bit violent but my son thinks it is funny slap stick comedy. He also likes the messages of the holidays being about family time.

The Grinch Who Stole Christmas

Polar Express

Polar Express

He also loves Polar Express which he use to have one of the first editions of the book. I doubt he loves the Polar Express for the story of Santa but for the beautiful art work and sentiment that is put into the story. It is also a movie that is very prophetic this holiday season.

Sound of Music

Sound of Music

And usually just for kicks the Sound of Music is always thrown in to the mix for the Holidays which we always enjoy watching. It is amazing that a film that is 50+ years old is still witty and entertaining even today. Ah, to be Austrian or Swiss!

Favorite Holiday Film

What is Your Favorite Holiday Film of All Time?

See results

In Conclusion

Because we are German Americans we have had a convergence of Santa Claus and Kris Kringle. My son never really believed in either. I think it is an Autism thing. He always knew it was us. He kind of looked at me when I was reading him The Night Before Christmas and then took the book and tossed it. As if to say, “I’m not a sucker. It is you Mom.”. I told him I believed in Santa and Kris Kringle but my son has never. Then my son thought I was a sucker.

We don’t watch much television but we do watch some of the classics that we have always watched. So I would have to rate, for me, as my number one choice; It’s a Wonderful Life.

And for my son I think he will always love “The Grinch Who Stole Christmas.” But the other films provide hours of entertainment for you and your family to take a break from your hectic holiday schedules.

I have listed all of these movies for you and they are all relatively inexpensive with the exception of a few so you can stock up. And when your children are crawling the walls because they have the Holiday Fever (all children suffer from this syndrome) you can quite them down with a nice movie for the whole family. I have tried more homework and bigger Holiday projects to calm my son down and the only thing that seems to work is letting him watch a few movies. These movies give me some down time which I usually need desperately during the Holiday season.

Our Favorite Holiday Films of All Time are as follows:

#10- Reindeer Games

#9- Scrooged

#8- Leathal Weapon (The Whole Series)

#7- Die Hard (The Whole Series)

#6- Nightmare Before Christmas

#5- An Affair to Remember

#4- Sound of Music

#3- Polar Express

#2- Dr. Seuss; The Grinch Who Stole Christmas

#1- It's a Wonderful Life.


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    • JT Walters profile image

      JT Walters 6 years ago from Florida

      It didn't make the survey but I am certain it is a wonderful film for escapism during the holidays.

      Thank you for commenting.


    • profile image

      icountthetimes 6 years ago

      I always seem to end up watching Planes, Trains & Automobiles over the Christmas period. It really is a gem.

    • JT Walters profile image

      JT Walters 6 years ago from Florida

      Ours as well. We watch it every Christmas Eve. But my son truly loves the Grinch as well.


    • jfay2011 profile image

      jfay2011 6 years ago

      Its a Wonderful Life is always my favorite.