With Christmas arriving in less than a month, check out the top 10 holiday-themed movies you should watch with your family or significant other this year.
The Santa Clause (1994)
This is the story of an ordinary man who winds up taking over as Santa Claus. Starring Tim Allen, the original movie was a hit among both the masses and the critics. Although some people enjoyed the two sequels just as much, they didn’t get as many rave reviews. So if you’re pressed for time this holiday season, your best bet is to stick the first one—you’re guaranteed some great laughs.
The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993)
This Halloween-meets-Christmas-themed movie is also over two decades old. It follows Pumpkin King Jack Skellington, who discovers Christmas Town and tries to take over the holiday for the citizens of Halloween Town. If you’re already a fan of the movie, you’ll love this new parody song that fuses together The Nightmare Before Christmas and the popular Halloween movie Hocus Pocus. The parody is performed by three sisters who impersonate the three famous witch sisters from Hocus Pocus.
A Christmas Story (1983)
This movie, based on Jean Shepherd’s short stories, is so iconic that it became a preserved asset in the National Film Registry in 2012. Even the house from the movie has become a landmark. If you’re going to be in Houston this month, an adaptation of the film is being performed on stage at the Hobby Center for Performing Arts from December 8 to December 20.
Miracle on 34th Street (1947)
This Oscar-winning movie is as classic a Christmas movie as they come. It’s about an old man claiming to be Santa Claus who makes it his mission to restore a woman and her young daughter’s faith in old St. Nick. The 1947 classic was remade in 1994, but if you’re interested in the original, you can still thankfully find it on Netflix.
The Night Before (2015)
This is a new addition to the list. Starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Seth Rogen, and Anthony Mackie, The Night Before recently released on November 20. Although it is R-rated, the movie definitely looks like it’s going to be hilarious. Watch the trailer here:
The Muppet Christmas Carol (1992)
The Muppets, plus Christmas, plus music equals a blockbuster for both kids and parents alike! Based on the classic story by Charles Dickens, there’s a good chance this movie will resurface as a favorite for many fans, what with The Muppets’ big comeback to primetime television this year. (A new series called The Muppets premiered on ABC this fall.)
Christmas Vacation (1989)
This movie follows Clark Griswold (played by Chevy Chase), a man with borderline OCD, whose plans of having the “perfect Christmas” for his family go hilariously awry. Christmas Vacation gives you all the right laughs with just the right amount of Christmas spirit.
Arthur Christmas (2011)
Released four years ago, this animated movie was rated a whopping 92% by Rotten Tomatoes. Critics called it “humorous, smart, and heart-warming.”
Photo: Twitter/Arthur Christmas
Home Alone (1990)
Just last month on November 16, this classic holiday movie celebrated its 25th anniversary! Time sure has flown. And believe it or not, Macaulay Culkin, who played the mischievous Kevin McCallister, is now 35. Although he’s rocking long blonde hair today, he will always be remembered as the notorious, but adorable kid who was left home alone. (If you’ve already seen the movie, you’ll recognize the house in the photo above.)
The Polar Express (2004)
This movie won a lot of hearts, but most don’t know that the voice of one of the little boys in it was actually done by Josh Hutcherson from The Hunger Games! He even won a Young Artists Award for his role in The Polar Express. For the true Christmas experience, fans of the movie can immerse themselves in the story at SeaWorld Orlando—every year, the park features a motion simulator ride where you can board a “passenger car” on the Polar Express and ride through the North Pole on Christmas Eve.