Because I spent the first few weeks of December watching and reviewing the junkiest holiday Rom-Coms the internet had to offer, I felt it was only fair to tell you a little about the Christmas movies I really do love and respect and watch year after year.
I am all about the holiday spirit, but feeling spirited and just, like, happy, during the holidays can be really tough. I mean, the holidays are a time when you’re super busy, spending all kinds of money you don’t necessarily have to be spending, and feeling the weight of social and family obligations more than ever. It’s also a time that those of us who have lost loved ones, especially recently, feel those losses most acutely. I know myself well enough now that I make a conscious effort to keep up with my self-care and to find little things to brighten my days during the holiday season.
Crappy Christmas Rom-coms gave me a laugh, but as the holiday drew closer, I turned to my old favorite movies to keep me company. Nostalgia is a powerful tool in the battle against negativity, and so it’s super helpful to revisit things and places that have made me feel joyful in the past. I generally love movies that have a solid storyline and an uplifting theme; and these seven movies have just that!
7. The Santa Clause: This was a childhood favorite of mine, and I was pleasantly surprised when I saw it added to Netflix this year. Some of the jokes are dated, sure, but the music and score in this movie will never fail to impress me. Like, I literally feel so much more spirited as soon as the first song starts playing. Which I think is Jingle Bell Rock. I also love the elves in this version of the North Pole. Anyone else picky about their elves? These elves are adorable.
6. A Christmas Story: This one is a classic. It doesn’t hurt that the neighborhood from this movie looks a lot like my neighborhood in Boston. I love how the whole plot revolves around a kid wanting a toy for Christmas; because in the end, aren’t we all so, so committed to our toys as a kid? The leg lamp will always be funny, as will the tongue-stuck-to-the-flag-pole thing. And the bunny suit. And the snow suit. And… there’s just a lot of material in here. I don’t have cable, but if/when I do, the day-long marathon of this movie will probably be playing over the holidays!
5. Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer: When I was a kid, my mom taped a bunch of christmas movies consecutively onto a VHS that we wore out over the years. This was one of our movies. I still relate to the Misfit Toys so hard. I love the song “There’s Always Tomorrow.” And I also love this claymation style of animation. The season is not complete without watching Rudolph!
4. Love Actually: It’s no secret that I love a good romantic story, but Love Actually has a lot more than that. Human interest stuff interests me, plain and simple. There’s a character in Love Actually for everyone to relate to; I relate to different characters different years. I think the fact that some of the characters don’t get a totally storybook ending is important- and others do, which is also important. This is just a great movie filled with great actors and great messages:)
3. The Holiday: I am a huge Kate Winslet fan. I was 9 when Titanic came out and I have just idolized her ever since. I think she is so endearing and lovely and I just want to have brunch with her. I also love every single other actor in this movie, and the plot, and (yet again) THAT SCORE. Holy moly, if you haven’t listened to the score from The Holiday, than you have not truly lived.
2. Elf: I am not a huge Will Farrell fan, but Elf is so great. That man takes the elf character and RUNS WITH IT. I also love that Zooey Deschanel is in this with blonde hair. And Tyrion Lannister is a mean children’s book writer with a blackbelt. Also any movie with an arctic puffin and a narwhale is an A+ in my book. And, once again, the music is really fun in this one.
1. It’s a Wonderful Life: Guys. This. Movie. When I was little, I asked my dad what his favorite movie was, and he said this was it. Years later when I was old enough to pay attention to black and white, non-musical movie, I realized how truly wonderful it is. I almost named this blog ZuZu’s Petals. I love how this movie dove head first into how totally terrible the holidays can be on a person, wayyyyy before that was a thing. I also LOVE every single line of dialogue. If you’ve never sat down and watched this movie end to end…do it. It’s worth it.
I hope you enjoyed learning a little more about my actual tastes in movies! love these movies, and I really think you will too!
Now You Tell Me…
- What are your favorite holiday movies?
- What holiday traditions help keep you feeling merry and bright?!
- Best holiday movie watching snacks?!?