Christmas has never been better celebrated by sitting in front of the fireplace, having some of your favorite egg nog and watching your favorite Xmas Movies. Here’s a list of the Top 10 Christmas movies of 2008:
10 – A Christmas Carol (1999) starring Patrick Stewart
Ok, it was sort of a toss-up for me between this version and the Muppets. There have been tons of versions of this story, we know it, we love it, and you’ve got to love the Muppets. For really telling a great story, though, there’s nothing like great actors – and this movie has them in abundance. The main thing about this film is, it gives a lot of backstory to Ebenezer Scrooge. A lot of other versions come off as a very stiff morality tale, this one actually lets you get in touch with the characters.
9 – Elf (2003) starring Will Ferrell
Will Ferrell stars as Buddy, a human raised by elves at Santa’s workshop. Santa allows the now-grown Buddy to go to New York to find his birth father and hilarity ensues. The awkward but enthusiastic Buddy is a fish out of water as an elf experiencing human culture for the first time.
8 – The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993), Animated
I am a big Tim Burton fan, and any film that can be watched for two holidays gets a thumbs up from me. I pull this one out at Halloween and we play it till New Year’s. The songs are great, the quirky characters are lovable in their own twisted ways, and I can’t think of any other film that has Santa Claus being questioned by a giant gambling ghost. Gets me in the Christmas spirit – pun intended.
7 – National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (1989)
Number seven is truly a classic Christmas comedy. The Griswold family struggles to have an old-fashioned Christmas. With crazy Christmas lights, Cousin Eddie, and squirrels hiding in trees, National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation will keep you laughing all night long.
6 – Bad Santa (2003) starring Billy Bob Thornton
Do I really want to admit I like this film? Thornton’s character has a dubious plan to rob a department store by dressing like Santa. He then proceeds on a crazy spree including getting drunk, beating up little kids, and cursing throughout. It may not sound like it, but there is a goodwill message hidden somewhere within. Yeah, this is not a family film – but it is pretty funny.
5 – Scrooged (1988)
Back when Bill Murray was still funny (meaning pre- “Lost in Translation”) he made this gem of a film. I especially love Carol Kane’s performance as the ghost of Christmas Present, and yes, it’s still kind of fun to laugh at what we thought was stylish in the 80s. The story is, of course, Dicken’s Christmas Carol – but with many more wisecracks.
4 – The Santa Clause (1994) starring Tim Allen
You don’t want to be Santa? Tough, you knocked him off your roof, it’s your job now. Tim Allen’s elastic face gets a lot of hysterical expressions throughout this movie. I love his attempts to dodge the Santa look, and personally find the visual of Santa on the treadmill hilarious every time.
3 – Miracle on 34th Street (1947)
A kind, bearded old man is put on trial for calling himself Kris Kringle and believing that he is the real Santa. A holiday blockbuster that appeals to the believer in all of us.
2 – It’s a Wonderful Life (1946)
Life is falling apart for George Bailey and he begins to contemplate suicide, when his guardian angel appears to show how life would have been if he never existed. A timeless Jimmy Stewart classic that shows anything is possible with the love of friends and family.
…and that brings us to the number one Christmas movie in 2008…
1 – A Christmas Story (1983) starring Peter Billingsley
All Ralphie wants for Christmas is a Red Ryder BB gun. He perseveres, despite the admonitions of all the adults around him who say, “You’ll shoot your eye out with one of those, kid”. A story told from a kid’s point of view to which young and old can relate.
So, sit down, grab your favorite holiday treat, and settle in for a long winter’s night. I hope these films bring a little joy to you and yours this year – Merry Christmas!