- Holidays and Celebrations
13 Unconventional Christmas Movies for People Who Just Aren't Into It
Tired of the same old, stale xmas films?
Do you ever get tired and bored of watching the same sappy Christmas films year after year? I really do. Okay, maybe I just can't handle too much drama. Also, x-mas just isn't my thing. I'm usually suffering from Xmas burnout by the time the first trees appear in Walm-Mart's garden centers. In October. I cope by watching mostly action and horror movies until it's all over.
It seems as if the television stations have gotten to the point where, every holiday season, they show the same few movies (A Christmas Carol, Miracle on 34th Street, A Christmas Story, and a few others) over and over again. From November through the end of December, the networks air the same handful of movies over and over on a continuous, depressing loop.
To break out of the rut, I've put together a list of thirteen entertaining films that take place during the holiday season. That's my way of getting into the spirit. I tried to recall some decent movies from different genres, so there's something for everyone. If you have a favorite, feel free to post it in the comments section below.
What's your preference?
Die Hard - 1988
Starring Bruce Willis and the late Alan Rickman. The story isn't about Christmas in any way. It takes place during the holiday season, and that's good enough for me. It's one of my favorite action movies of all time, and I love that it makes people wonder why it made this list. "Ho, ho, ho; now I have a machine gun." Enough said.
Action - Adrenaline Rush
Gremlins - 1984
Starring Zach Galligan, Phoebe Cates and Corey Feldman. I would describe it as a dark comedy with a moral to it. Small creatures with sharp claws and fangs terrorize a small town during the holiday season. Even though it sounds like a horror film, it manages to maintain an air of lightheartedness.
Silent Night, Deadly Night - 1984
Here's a gratuitous slasher film for the holidays. There are sequels to this, but after watching the original, you most likely will have had quite enough of this franchise.
Scrooged - 1998
Here we have a modernized version of Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol. This movie is laugh-out-loud funny, and it has a great cast including Bill Murray as the lovable Scrooge-like character, Bobcat Goldthwait and Karen Allen.
Love Actually - 2003
If you're not into action, camp or horror, this one's for you. It is one of those movies that is sure to please everyone, and it is safe for younger viewers. You will come away from this with a warm and fuzzy feeling inside. It features an all star cast including Hugh Grant, Liam Neeson, Bill Nighy, Emma Thompson, Colin Firth, Andrew Lincoln and a slew of other stars.
Die Hard 2 - 1990
Once more, our hero, John McClane is in the wrong place (which happens to be an airport) at the wrong time. Oh, yeah, and it's Christmas again. As in any good action film, it features shootouts, explosions and all kinds of other excitement. It's interesting to note how different airport security was back then compared to what it is today.
Bad Santa - 2003
Starring Billy Bob Thornton, Bernie Mac, Lauren Graham and John Ritter. This is certainly not for those who are easily offended, especially if you choose to watch the Badder Santa version; it is hilariously funny, but also quite crude. An alcoholic criminal works as a Santa Claus in order to rob the department store he is employed by.
Black Christmas - 1974
More holiday gore; an escaped lunatic is murdering sorority sisters. Here's the trailer for the original 1974 movie starring Olivia Hussey and Margot Kidder. The film was remade in 2006 and features Mary Elizabeth Winstead. I've seen both, and I don't have a preference for one over the other. I am a huge fan of horror films, and as far as slasher films go, this is certainly not the worst I've ever seen.
The Family Stone - 2005
Another option for those who enjoy the heartwarming films, this one is about a diverse family that comes together for the Christmas holiday. It has touching moments, and there are also some laughs. The cast includes Sarah Jessica Parker, Luke Wilson, Claire Daines, Dermot Mulroney, Diane Keaton, Rachel McAdams and Craig T. Nelson.
Reindeer Games - 2000
Another one for the action fans. This one got bad reviews, but it's not the worst movie I've ever seen. I've seen some really bad ones, so I guess that's not saying much. At any rate, it's different, and it's worth a watch. Ben Affleck is a parolee claiming to be his dead cellmate in order to woo the guy's pen-pal girlfriend (Charlize Theron). Also starring Gary Sinise.
Trading Places - 1983
A hilarious classic directed by John Landis, starring Eddie Murphy, Dan Aykroyd and Jamie Lee Curtis. A couple of millionaires make a bet, forcing a common con artist and a successful investor to switch roles. Unlike other movies of this type, this one does not involve any kind of magical transformation involving two people actually switching bodies.
While You Were Sleeping - 1995
Bill Pullman and Sandra Bullock star in this romantic comedy. Rom-coms tend to leave me feeling disappointed, but this is one of the better ones. A woman gets in over her head while pretending to be the fiancee of a man in a coma. News of the engagement comes as a surprise, and mostly delight, of the man's family members. It's cute, funny, original, and not blatantly predictable. Also, the characters are endearing.
Well, that's my list; I hope you enjoyed the trailers. Hopefully, it stirred up fond memories and made you want to watch some of these again. Or maybe you just found one that you hadn't previously seen that looks interesting. Thanks for stopping by, and if you have any suggestions or comments, you can leave them below.
© 2011 Sara Krentz