Over the years a great number of films have been produced which have been inspired by the annual Christmas holiday. It seems that everyone has their own favourite titles with many people preferring the movies that they watched as children when Christmas seemed to be the most magical time.
For many people Christmas is a time to relax and it is the ideal time to watch a movie. We detail 10 favourite Christmas movies in the hope that it will help you to decide which ones to watch during the festive season.
1. The Nightmare Before Christmas
This animated musical fantasy horror movie was released in 1993 and quickly became a cult classic. It was produced and co-written by the acclaimed film director and producer Tim Burton who is famed for his dark and unusual movies such as ‘Beetlejuice’ and his recent remake of the film ‘Alice in Wonderland’. The Nightmare before Christmas features a skeletal being named Jack Skellington as the main character. Jack opens up a portal which connects his own ‘Halloween Town’ to ‘Christmas Town’ and the fun begins.
2. Home Alone
Released in 1990 Home Alone was popular with movie goers from the start keeping the number one spot at the Box Office for 12 weeks and securing a spot in the Guinness Book of Records as the highest grossing live-action comedy ever. The plotline of the movie was centres on the eight year old Kevin played by the child star Macaulay Culkin. Kevin gets left at home by accident when the family goes on vacation for the Christmas holiday. Whilst his family are away he has to contend with burglars and he gets spooked by a neighbour who was rumoured to have murdered his family decades ago. Eventually his family return and a happy ending ensues.
3. Miracle on 34th Street
Miracle on 34th Street is an old family favourite dating back to 1947. The film won several Academy awards after its release and it was selected for preservation by the United States National Film Registry by the Library of Congress due to its cultural, historical and aesthetical significance.
Kris Kringle is the main character in this film playing Santa in the annual Macys Thanksgiving Day parade. The plot Centres on the question of whether or not Kris is in fact the real Santa Claus.
4. National Lampoons Christmas Vacation
This American Christmas comedy released in 1989 is the third in a trio of films from the National Lampoon’s ‘Vacation’ series.
The actor Chevy Chase plays the main character, Clark Wilhelm Griswold Jr. A bumbling father of two. Clark is intent on creating a ‘good old fashioned family Christmas’ for his children, wife and extended family to enjoy. His plans soon start to go wrong and hilarity follows.
Scrooged is an American comedy film which hit the cinemas in 1988. The film is described as a modernization of the Charles Dickens’ book ‘A Christmas Carol’. The actor Bill Murray plays the main character Frank Cross; a miserable TV programming executive with similarities to Ebenezer Scrooge’s character in the Dickens tale. Franks determination to succeed in his career is driving away his lover and he is estranged from his brother John. He soon learns the error of his ways, with the help of three spooks and sets about correcting the damage he has done, changing his life for the better.
6. Jack Frost 1998
This Christmas comedy drama film was released in 1998. The storyline begins with a tragedy when the main character, Jack Frost dies in a car accident due to a storm on his way home to his family. Before his death Jack gave his son Charlie a harmonica after they built a snowman together in their backyard. One year later Charlie builds another snowman to look like his late father, Charlie then plays the harmonica before he goes to sleep and this causes the snowman comes to life with the spirit of his father Jack Frost.
This film stars three of the late musician Frank Zappa’s four children.
The actor Will Ferrell plays the lead in this recent American Christmas comedy which details the plight of the character ‘Buddy’, who as a baby was taken to the North Pole by accident when he crawled into Santa Claus’s sack of toys. When he finds out that he is human in his later years he sets off to New York to track down his parents. The film received good reviews by the critics, topping the US box office on its second week of release.
8. Love Actually
The 2011 romantic Christmas comedy ‘Love Actually’ stars a large number of highly acclaimed actors and actresses including Alan Rickman and Keira Knightley.
The picture was intended to be called ‘Love Actually Is All Around”, as a tribute to the chart topping pop song “Love Is All Around”, performed by Wet Wet Wet in Curtis’s breakthrough film Four Weddings and a Funeral.
The film is set five weeks before Christmas and it plays out until the holiday arrives, detailing the separate yet intertwined love lives of the characters in the film.
9. The Snowman
This animated film was adapted from a children’s book of the same name written by the English author and Illustrator Raymond Briggs.
The film has no words but is accompanied by several classical music pieces, with the most famous of these being ‘walking in the air’ sung by chorister Peter Auty. The film depicts a snowman that comes to life, befriending the boy who made him, they go on several adventures together until the story ends in tragedy when the boy finds that the Snowman has melted in the morning sun.
10 White Christmas
This American musical touched the hearts of many at the time of its release in 1954 with its sickly sweet storyline including a double romance. The production was advanced for its time, utilising a new technique called ‘Vistavision’ developed by Paramount pictures to improve the quality of their films. It was also filmed in ‘Technicolor’. The Cast included the singer and actor Bing Crosby who recorded Irving Berlin’s song ‘White Christmas’ released on Christmas day in 1941, inspiring this film.