Don’t Argue: These Are The Best Christmas Movies To Snuggle Up Toby Candice Chua
Christmas movies are the quintessential part of the holiday experience. Whether you’re playing it whilst unwrapping gifts by the tree or chugging on mulled wine, Christmas movies have that ability to trigger nostalgia, even if it is one you’ve never seen before. It is that mix of twinkly Christmas-esque music, snow, knit sweaters and a certain varying something that jolts personal memories of Christmas past. (Of course, the fact that many of the better-known ones were released in the nineties plays a part, too.)
As Team KULALA’s resident Christmas nut, I decided to volunteer as tribute, sacrificing my eyeballs to come up with our first-ever list of the best holiday movies ever made. The number of Christmas movies I’ve seen in the last few weeks is astounding. Ranking holiday movies is a touchy subject – I will go to war with you if you refuse to recognise Bridget Jones’ Diary as a holiday movie – but it had to be done. Especially if you’re getting a little bored with your usual holiday entertainment and you need new blood. We came up with our top 12, so you have one to take you through all 12 days of Christmas.
(Slight disclaimer before we proceed: It’s A Wonderful Life is not on the list. If it makes you feel any better, it would have been ranked 13th. Please don’t hate us. We do love you, James Stewart!)
A modern, slightly risqué, mildly disturbing retelling of A Christmas Carol. Bill Murray plays the Scrooge-type character whilst producing his very own bizarre version of the classic Christmas tale. It’s Scrooge-ception!
11. BATMAN RETURNS
For those of you who want a cheese-free holiday movie. It’s Christmas, but instead of chillaxing with good old Alfred by the fire, Batman finds his hands tied with the villainous Penguin and Catwoman. Penguins love snow, Christmas is full of snow. It works. Plus, Michelle Pfeiffer’s Catwoman is très chic.
10. A CHRISTMAS STORY
Its appeal lies in its familiarity – we’ve all been Ralphie at some point in our childhood. We’ve also all been that one kid who stuck his tongue to a frozen metal pole because he wanted to test if it would really stick to the pole. Just me? Okay.
9. NATIONAL LAMPOON’S CHRISTMAS VACATION
Pierce Hawthorne before he was Pierce Hawthorne! Chevy Chase plays a well-meaning dad who finds his ideal Christmas being slowly but surely ruined by unexpected visitors, severely dehydrated turkeys, missing bonus cheques, a SWAT team and finally, an actual sewage explosion. Poor guy.
8. A NIGHTMARE BEFORE CHRISTMAS
Jack Skellington – the “Pumpkin King” of Halloweentown – faces an identity crisis and decides that merging Christmas with Halloween will give his after-life more meaning. It turns into utter chaos, of course. There’s singing, too!
You don’t have to like that song, but you can’t deny that Frozen is perfect for Christmas. Not only is the fictional setting of Arendelle completely covered in deep, deep, deep, deep snow – a virtual high-five if you got that reference – the third and sixth leads are a snowman and a reindeer.
6. DR SEUSS’ HOW THE GRINCH STOLE CHRISTMAS
Everyone fears the Grinch, save for one little girl who believes that even he and his teeny-tiny heart deserve a proper Christmas. Alternate titles include That One Time Jim Carrey Was Covered In Green Fur and When Little Jenny Humphrey Was Actually Little.
5. HOME ALONE
Many vote for the sequel, but we’re going with the original on this. Your heart breaks a little when Kevin gets left behind as the rest of his family flies to Paris, but it starts to warm up when you realise what a little adult – and a genius booby trapper – he is. If only we were half as resourceful at that age.
4. THE HOLIDAY
Two women who are officially done with their own lives decide to swap houses for the holidays in hopes that it will make things better. As it is Christmas, it does. Includes one crying Jude Law and one surprisingly charming Jack Black.
3. LOVE ACTUALLY
How can this not be on the list, right? As far as holiday rom-coms go, Love Actually and its 54321 sub-plots are the undeniable champs. Everyone can find a couple to ship!
2. BRIDGET JONES’ DIARY
Why don’t more people count this as a Christmas movie? I mean, Christmas happens twice in the plot. Bridget Jones singing a very off-key version of “Without You” atop a desk at her office Christmas party is basically all of us. Except, she has a Mr. Darcy and we don’t.
To the more critical mind, Will Farrell playing the man-child Buddy the Elf sounds like a recipe for disaster, but trust us – Elf is properly funny. While his shower duet of “Baby, It’s Cold Outside” with an unsuspecting (and blonde!) Zooey Deschanel is quite spectacular, it is Buddy’s fish-out-of-the-water behaviour that drives the funnies. We can’t decide which of his lines we like best: “YOU DID IT! CONGRATULATIONS! WORLD’S BEST CUP OF COFFEE. GREAT JOB EVERYBODY!” or “SANTA! OH MY GOD!!! SANTA, HERE? I KNOW HIM, I KNOW HIM!”