33 Best Christmas Movies So Far


(Movies marked with a * may not be suitable for children, at least in our opinion.)

20. The Night They Saved Christmas

the night they saved christmasWhat 80’s kid doesn’t remember and LOVE this movie about a cranky dad who wants to blow up the North Pole?

19. Ernest Saves Christmas

earnest saves christmasI can’t believe it’s been so long since I’ve seen this. I LOVED this as a kid.

18. Gremlins*

gremlinsI always wanted a mogwai. I’ll probably name my next pet Gizmo.

17. Christmas with the Kranks

Christmas with the KranksA good “train-wreck” movie is good for the soul, especially if it’s about Christmas.

16. Christmas Vacation*

christmas vacationA guilty pleasure that we have to sneak around to watch at Christmas time, because the kiddos just aren’t ready for it.

15. Scrooged*

scroogedI thought this was the best, most clever telling of the Christmas Carol that had been made in a long time when I was a twelve. I still crack up over stapling the antlers to the mice!

14. The Nativity Story

The_Nativity_StoryThere’s a shortage of good quality Christmas movies that focus on the true meaning of Christmas. While I didn’t find this movie terribly fantastic, it’s still the best offering out there.

13. The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe

lion witch and wardobeThis is a Christmas movie? you ask. Of course it is. Not only is it magically filled with a snowy wonderland, but Santa himself makes an appearance to give the children gifts. He gives them WEAPONS…how cool is that?

12. Doctor Who: A Christmas Carol

doctor who christmas carolIf you know us at all these next two don’t surprise you. Christmas specials are a Doctor Who tradition, and this is one of the best…good enough to make this list.

11. Doctor Who: The Doctor, the Widow, and the Wardrobe

Doctor widow and wardrobeThis is also one of the best, and the only reason it’s above the other is that my wife disagreed with me and I let her win.

10. Lord of the Rings/The Hobbit

hobbit and lotrA little explanation is needed here. These are on the list for two reasons. Every movie was released during the Christmas season and every year we rewatch LOTR during the Christmas break. It’s a tradition. And now that the Hobbit is complete, we’re going to rotate which one we watch each year.

9. Twas the Night Before Christmas

twas the night before christmasA childhood favorite of both of ours, it’s difficult to find now-a-days. Perhaps it’s time to buy it.

8. Miracle on 34th Street

Miracle on 34th StEither one will do, actually. They’re both charming in their own ways.

7. White Christmas

white christmasThis fun musical is a must see. My wife might have put it higher on the list, but she’s not writing it!

6. Mickey’s Christmas Carol

mickey's christmas carolThis was the definitive Christmas Carol to me growing up. I can’t imagine Christmas without it. It always came on with two other shorts…the one with Mickey, the tree, and the Chipmunks (included with the DVD), and the one with Goofy learning how to ski (can’t find it anywhere).

5. Elf

ElfOne day I want to have the guts to scream “SAAANTAAAA! I KNOW HIM!” when someone mentions pictures with Santa at an event!

4. Rudolf the Red-Nosed Reindeer

rudolph-the-red-nosed-reindeerThis one was MY favorite childhood classic. It just wasn’t officially Christmas until this came on TV.

3. A Charlie Brown Christmas

a charlie brown christmasAnd this was my wife’s favorite childhood classic. And since it famously tells the true Christmas story, it gets the edge on mine.

2. Polar Express

Polar expressThis is the only movie to make all three of our lists and will probably become the favorite childhood classic for both the Jedi and the Princess.

1. It’s a Wonderful Life

it's a wonderful lifeNot sure what to say about this one. But if you don’t include this in your holiday line-up, you’re missing out on something special. It tops nearly every Christmas movie list you’ll find, including this one.

So…what’s your favorite Christmas movies? Leave a comment and share!

One comment

  1. I love White Christmas, Elf, The Santa Clause, and A Charlie Brown Christmas. Some of my favorites you didn’t mention:

    The Muppet Christmas Carol (with Michael Caine as Scrooge) is my all-time favorite version of the Dickens classic. The first version to ever make me feel sympathetic toward Ebenezer, and it’s because of Belle, and that song she sings that makes me weep every single time. It seems in every other version of the story, I had only ever cared about Scrooge’s repentance for Bob Cratchit’s sake (and Tiny Tim) but this version makes me actually care about Scrooge’s redemption for himself. And I swear Michael Caine makes me believe the Muppet cast are just as real as the humans.

    While I still bought Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer and let my kids watch it, I always had a problem with the way Santa acted in that movie, and therefore it never made my favorites. I always preferred “Santa Claus is Comin to Town” with Fred Astaire’s narration and a Santa that chose Christmas as his wedding night because it was /already/ a holy night. The holiday doesn’t originate with Santa or revolve around him.

    I must also admit to being extremely fond of “How the Grinch Stole Christmas”, the Chuck Jones animated one, NOT that abomination with Jim Carrey. I got the Dr. Seuss book at a very young age. I memorized it and can still recite it. What a treasure is this little story.

    If someone stole everything in my entire house (not just the decorations and presents, but food, furniture, and even the log for the fire) on Christmas Eve, would I really be in the mood to sing so joyfully like those Whos did on Christmas morning? That’s a profound challenge for a kiddie movie to issue, and it doesn’t pull any punches even though it is completely fun and silly and wildly entertaining in the process.


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