Who am I kidding, I love them all. And some of Brian’s favorites have grown on me too. (Except for Prancer, that is.) While we try to squeeze in all of the above, here are my personal top 10, can’t-miss Christmas favorites.
It’s a Wonderful Life
“Remember, no man is a failure who has friends.” Gahh. What a message! This was always on in our house at Christmas growing up and is probably my favorite of all if I had to choose.
A must! Although we loved it in my family growing up, I think my appreciation for Kevin McCallister has grown since marrying into the D’Angelo family where it is THE must-watch Christmas movie. We even quoted it Home Alone 2 on this year’s Christmas card. So I love it more as an adult now too.
A Christmas Carol
Any version (Mickey Mouse!) but I especially love the Michael Caine one. I think we all can be Scrooge at one point or another so I like to watch as a little reminder around the holidays to keep my priorities straight. How can you not love Charles Dickens, am I right?
Bing! You beautiful, blue-eyed song bird. This was another constant in our home at Christmas. But it’s so long and a lot of the show rehearsal scenes in the middle feels a bit unnecessary so I tend to fast forward. But it’s just not Christmas unless I’ve teared up as the general inspects his troops at the end and Bing, Danny, and the girls sing “White Christmas.”
The Santa Clause
My siblings and I were obsessed with this as kids. I’d stopped watching for years as a result but watched it this past week and found myself laughing out loud repeatedly. Tim Allen’s zingers still hold up. I should mention that I had a massive crush on the head “Elf with Attitude” that rescues Charlie from his mom’s. Brian loves to tease me about that. So happy to have re-discovered this one this year.
So many quotable lines, how can you not love this one?! This tends to get overwatched, truthfully. We started a little early watching this one and wore it out a bit.
How the Grinch Stole Christmas (*Jim Carrey version)
My sister and I quote this to each other year-round. “But what would I wear?!” is a regular text to/from one another whenever we’re struggling with what to wear for any occasion. Kind of like how we quote “Shrek” to each other around this time of year too — “NOT THE GUMDROP BUTTONS!!!” It’s not Christmas unless I see this.
The Family Stone
It wasn’t a favorite initially, but with each re-watching I’ve come to love it. And who doesn’t tear up every time the family unwraps the photograph? The beautiful matting and frame job brings a tear to my eye even as I write this… (I love a good picture frame job!)
For more sentimental reasons, I love this because Hugh Grant reminds me so much of my Uncle Paul. I miss him so much, especially at Christmas. My uncle was like a big kid. I remember my mom once asking us if we’d rather go to a carnival or have Uncle Paul babysit and we all deafeningly screamed “UNCLE PAUL!!!” without hesitation.
Christmas with the KranksBrian doesn’t understand my love for this one, but I just love Tim Allen’s humor. But I have to give props to Jamie Lee Curtis too, she is hilarious in this! I think my appreciation for this has grown since meeting Brian too because I can see us down the road being the Kranks. It’s only a matter of time before I start buying ugly Christmas sweaters to wear un-ironincally. But I don’t think Brian would ever, EVER suggest we “skip” Christmas.
Honorable Mentions this year
It’s so, so, so wrong it’s right. For laughs and complete awfulness, add this to your watch list.
The Polar Express
It was one of my favorite books as a child, but I hated the animation when it came out so I avoided it. I finally watched it straight through this year and teared up MULTIPLE times. When the little boy runs after the train but misses it (heart clench). Later when he sings about having never had presents (I NEED A HUG). And finally the end… “the bell still rings for me” (sobbing). I feel guilty for teasing Brian relentlessly about The Polar Express bell ornament on our tree. I’m framing that sucker after Christmas for our gallery wall as a reminder to believe. Just wait.