Top 5 (plus one) Christmas Movies

It has been over a year since I reviewed a top five category, but ’tis the season to bring it back! This time I am sharing my love for my favourite Christmas/Holiday themed movies. I am not the typical, sappy girl, so if you love It’s a Wonderful Life you will be in major disagreement with my list. My list contains movies that, for me, mean Christmas. They entertain me and make me happy!! Plus, I love six of them, and I couldn’t cut one of them out, so this is a top five + one list!

#6-Miracle on 34th Street (1947)- This movie is a genuine classic. Although you don’t recognize many of the actors in it anymore, it is the story that counts. A little girl, Susan, doesn’t believe in Santa Clause because her pragmatic mother decided to not keep the secret from her. What she doesn’t realize is that she is stripping her daughter of the magic of Christmas by doing so. Enter a nice old man who firmly believes he is Kris Kringle aka Santa Clause. As he touches the lives around him, including Susan and her mother’s, everyone around him starts to believe he is the real deal, as well as believing in Christmas.

I believe this movie was ahead of its time. Today, more than ever, the magic of Christmas seems to be missing as children are growing up faster than ever. I love this version over the remake mostly due to the excellent acting in this film. I love the feel of this film, in its black and white version, as I watch it. I feel sad for Susan, when she doesn’t believe in Santa. I feel like she is devoid of hope and has sadly become a mini-grown up. At the same time I don’t feel angry with her mother, instead I feel sad for her, as she is as sad and hopeless as her daughter. When the two of them start to transform due to being around Kringle is the magic of this film. It teaches its audience it is ok to believe in magic, to be kind to others and to be thankful for what you have. And for that I love it.

#5-Love Actually-I am betting there are some readers who are incensed that this movie is not higher on my list. The reason why it is not higher is because a) I live other movies better and b) this movie grew on me, I honestly did not instantly love it. This movie is more modern and is a mix of happy and sad. It isn’t your typical cheesy Christmas film, but it captures, at moments, the best that this season can evoke–love.

Love Actually follows the love lives of eight couples in London in the weeks leading up to Christmas. These couples are not necessarily romantic, nor are they traditional. And that might be one of the reasons why I love it. There is the relationship between a married man and his secretary. A rock star and his manager. A woman and her mentally disabled brother. Mixed in the the nontraditional are the sweet and wonderful stories of a little boy and his first crush. A prime minister and his aide and a jilted husband and his house keeper. Although mixed with tones of the bittersweet, Love Actually makes me happy and hopeful about love.

#4-Elf-I love this movie because it is so whimsical, funny and ridiculous. It is just so happy!!! And Will Farrell is so darn funny as the tallest elf you have ever met. I love his addiction to sugar, the food groups he eats and his love for singing and SANTA!!!! At first I thought the movie was a little too much but the more I watch it, the more I love it. Plus, how can you go wrong with a midget being called an elf in a board room and beating up Will Farrell?? Simply? You can’t!

#3-Scrooged-I love this movie because of Bill Murray. It is such a fantastic take on Dicken’s Christmas Carol, it is sarcastic, funny, violent, sad and heart warming. Murray is just so spot on as Cross, a tv executive who has no heart, is only into money and ratings that he no longer knows what is right and wrong. Having lost the love of his life years ago because of his singular focus of money and power, Cross is now heartlessly firing people on Christmas Eve and stapling antlers to animal’s heads. I love watching this movie on Christmas Eve as it make me laugh and it sticks closely enough to Dicken’s storyline, so it warms my heart as well. I would take this over A Christmas Carol any day.

 

#2-Little Women (1994)-This movie is my favourite movie to watch on Christmas Day. I love the story of four sisters who, during their search for their place in the world, realize the value of family and sisterhood. This movie makes me cry every time I watch it. The cast in this movie is stellar–Susan Sarandon as the figure head of the family, whose wise words are poignant and strong. Winona Ryder is fabulous as Jo March, the head strong sister who would much rather be writing than falling in love. A young Kirsten Dunst is Amy March, the romantic sister, who wants nothing more than a rich suitor. Claire Danes is Beth March–my favourite sister in the bunch. She captures the spirit of Beth so well. She knows her place in the world, loves her family and wants nothing more than to be with them. To be honest, Christmas simply is not complete without watching this movie. I love my mother and sister and feel intimately connected to this movie because of the strong love I have for the women in my life.

#1-Die Hard-Ahhhh yes. I have to explain this one to many people in my life every year. Yes, it’s an action flick. Yes, it stars Bruce Willis. But it is set at Christmas!!! And it kicks ass!!!!!! Willis plays an enigmatic John McClane–a rough-around-the-edges cop who goes to visit his wife on Christmas Eve, at her company’s Christmas party. While at the party terrorists attack the party and McClane is the only one, obviously, who can save the day!!

I love this movie for its action sequences, its cast (Alan Rickman anyone??), the fun atmosphere, the jokes and the fact that is just happens to be set at Christmas! With all the other heavy-handed Christmas movies out there, this one is refreshing and fun.

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~ by xine23 on December 23, 2011.

 
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