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Top Ten Holiday Movies to Watch this December


What better way is there to add to the festivities of this holiday season than by watching a jolly classic movie? As I say so myself (& I’m quite positive the same could be said for many others), I always feel complete joy when it comes to re-watching some of my favorite movies each year. Whether you may be feeling the celebratory spirit this year or not, by simply turning on a classic holiday film, your mood will for sure be elevated! Holiday movies showcase a multitude of emotions, varying from time to time, yet always encapsulating the feelings of nostalgia. Holiday movies allow people to reminisce with the years past, specifically childhood memories. For many people, through the choice animation, dialogue, and music these movies convey, they begin to feel as if they are their young self, adoring the holiday magic. While you may believe that this blast to the past will bring on sadness and a never ending longing for the old times and memories, the result is actually quite the opposite. A sense of gratitude overtakes the hearts of many during the viewing of these films. Many will experience a sudden appreciation for their childhood and the once magical epitome they held. So, this aforementioned sense of gratitude will only be carried on and on to loved ones, spreading the holiday cheer we all need in our lives. 

Of course, you might be wondering which holiday movies you should possibly watch this upcoming festive season; Well, the answer to this question could be (and is) limitless! This writer decided to put together a list of my personal ten favorite holiday movies. For me, each movie mentioned below holds a strong place in my heart. No matter my age, each and every year, without doubt, I will find myself re-watching these movies continuously. 

#10 –  Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer (1964)

No matter the year, this film will always be considered a classic! While animation may be much more developed and advanced in today’s day and age, nothing will EVER top the nostalgia represented through the stylistic choices made in this film! Not to mention, this movie conveys the idea that we should all treat each other the same and not judge each other based on any differences. Sometimes in life we all need this reminder. What better time than the holiday season to remember the importance of celebrating our differences?

#9 – The Year Without a Santa Claus (1974)

This 1974 stop motion animation will FOREVER hold a place in my heart. This is for multiple reasons, but two hold quite a bit more importance! My first reason: when viewing this film, the Christmas spirit stays alive through us all as we meet new characters who no longer find themselves within the holiday cheer. Now, my second reason: the nostalgic feelings the animations provide me are insane! I feel a great set of emotions toward the characters in the film due to their expressions and body language. In this day and age, despite technological advances, these past feels are quite hard to convey again. Not to mention the hilarious world-renowned duo: Snow Miser and Heat Miser! They seem to have all of us viewers wrapped up in their clutch. 

#8-  A Charlie Brown Christmas (1965)

Growing up, I have always adored every Charlie Brown movie. I can’t help but find myself fascinated by the entirety of the Peanuts world. Each and every film conveys important messages and allows us to connect with the set of characters, especially Charlie Brown himself. In one way or another we may all find ourselves relating to Charlie Brown at times. In this film, he is quite going through the holiday blues. It is not always easy to get into the spirit of the holidays. In the movie, we watch on as Charlie Brown overcomes his saddened feelings and welcomes the joys of Christmas and the holiday season. Every time I watch this movie, I will never not be deeply touched as a result. Not to mention, these movies are perfect for the holiday season as they are quite memorable. Generations on generations, the Peanuts movies have continued to be watched by millions, hopefully this grows on forever!

#7- Home Alone movies (1990 and 1992)

The Home Alone movie series starring Macaulay Culkin will never not be a family favorite. In need for a laugh over this holiday season? Well, grab some hot cocoa, a cozy blanket, maybe even gather some family together, make sure to watch Home Alone 1 then 2 and your wish will be fulfilled! Both movies surround the character Kevin McCallister, an 8 year old boy who feels quite lost within his ginormous family during the holiday season. Somehow and someway (trust me it’s quite entertaining, I should not be the one to reveal this!) Kevin manages to get separated from his family. This causes a great deal of mischief and new lessons learned for everyone. 

#6- How the Grinch Stole Christmas (2000)

While there are multiple movies that have been made about the Grinch, I personally believe this one to be the ALL time best! I will never forget the first time I watched this movie and was captured by the visual essence. The land of ‘Whoville’ immediately became my designated spot to be! When re-watching this movie, I will always be in awe of all the factors contributing to scenery, costume, dialogue, facial expressions, and hairstyles- especially little Cindy Lou’s hair-do’s! This movie captures the holiday spirit entirely from comedy to every touching moment present. 

#5- Christmas with the Kranks (2004)

Whenever I would come across this movie as a child, and even throughout my life, a smile would be brought to my face often. This holiday movie is one of my favorite comedies to date! The sequence of events from start to beginning are all tied together through hilarious and sweet moments. A sense of community, selflessness, and compassion are present throughout watching the film which I adore. As I said, I believe this movie represents a strong community which is nice and refreshing to watch. Again, as I’ve said multiple times throughout this article, the spirit of the holidays had been brought to us viewers wonderfully.

#4- National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (1989)

When I first came across this movie, I had only watched a few iconic scenes. I knew this movie would be quite incredible to watch so when I finally decided to fully watch, I immediately fell in love. This movie has done nothing but bring me immense joy! It is so fun to watch movies with a chaotic family and fun traditions. I especially love these types of movies during the holiday season (if you can’t already tell…)!!! If you are looking for a good, much needed laugh, this movie will surely answer your problems! 

#3- The Christmas Chronicles movies (2018)

While this movie came out in 2018, surprisingly enough, I did not watch the movie until a few years ago. I had been hanging out with a friend and she showed me a movie, telling me that she fully believed I would become obsessed with the story. Well, she was correct! The story represented in this fully captures the essence of the holidays. While watching, we are enabled to reflect on our own holiday adventures, as presented in the film. Not to mention, the holiday magic was perfectly shown through the scenery and visuals. Overall, watching this movie calls for a great experience and ultimately became one of my favorite set of movies of all time! 

#2- Elf (2003)

Now, I’m sure we all have watched this beloved, classic holiday movie. No matter how many times I watch Elf, I will never fail to laugh. This movie perfectly captured the holiday spirit.  The rush and chaos of the holidays were extremely evident, especially considering the movie takes place mainly in NYC. The combination of comedy and the emotional moments of father/son reunion is impeccable! 

#1- The Santa Clause Franchise (1994)

Always and forever will The Santa Clause movies remain as some of my favorite of ALL TIME. For me, nothing will EVER top these movies. Not even ten minutes into the first Santa Clause movie I immediately knew this would become a personal favorite. Oftentimes, I have even found myself watching this movie series not even close to the holiday season!! This movie perfectly captures the essence of what the holidays are really about. In this movie, the combinations of comedic to heartwarming moments had been written and performed beautifully. Honestly, within the multitude of times that I have watched these movies during my 16 years of life, I, without doubt, have most definitely shed a few tears. The relationship between the characters Scott Calvin and his son Charlie throughout the movie series truly shows the importance of family relationships within our lives.

These movies as well allow us viewers to reflect on what Christmas and the holidays have had in store for ourselves growing up, and on how exactly our holiday spirits have changed. Not to mention, while watching these movies, we learn that sometimes the things you don’t want in life may become the best thing in your life. I believe this is an important lesson we must stick with throughout our lives and share, especially during the seasons of festivities and holidays! To add on, the scenery and displayment of scenery was impeccable! If you happen to be reading my words right now and have never watched The Santa Clause movies, you most definitely do so soon as you will NOT regret it!!!!

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About the Contributor
Kylie Curtis, Student Writer
Meet Kylie! She is currently in her junior year and made the decision of rejoining The Gull as she has been fond of writing for many, many years. Kylie takes great pride in her writing and enjoys expressing herself through a sense of creative language. Other hobbies include running, photography, musical theatre, playing the violin, analyzing works of literature, and much more. Kylie is quite ecstatic to be a part of The Gull this 2023-2024, as she would love to share her writing with new people. Not to mention, when it comes to writing, she is up to any challenge!!

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