Top Picks for Holiday Movies


Photo by M. Sullivan

Grab your snacks and cuddle up for holiday movie night.

Holiday movies are some of the best ways to boost Christmas spirit by encouraging you to get cozy, watch festive scenes, and make memories. But with hundreds of Christmas movies available to watch, it can be difficult to find the perfect one. Here is a list of some of the more popular movies for this time of year.

Arthur Christmas (2011)

Arthur Christmas is an animated Christmas movie that serves to confront the skepticism behind Santa’s ability to deliver presents all in one night. It’s imaginative, three dimensional, and vivid animations are pleasing to the eye and stirs a strong festive feeling in audience members. The plot mostly centers around the main character, Arthur, and Santa’s many challenges on Christmas Eve, especially as they rectify a blunder made by a young elf. The loveable characters make the movie touching and sweet. Although the movie can be silly at times, it is perfect for all ages, and is well received even by serious film critics.

Miracle on 34th Street (1947)

This Christmas movie is a classic, and with a 96% Rotten Tomato score, it’s impossible to deny the excellence of this movie, even in the 21st century. Miracle on 34th Street revolves around New York City during the holidays, which is a setting adored by many Christmas lovers. Through its captivating plot, the movie humorously addresses the debate of whether the Santa is real, while sparking an insightful discussion on the meaning of sanity. The movie is sure to invoke nostalgia and keep you invested by simultaneously executing serious and lighthearted topics.

Christmas Vacation (1989)

Christmas Vacation is by far the funniest Christmas movie ever to be produced, which is in large part due to its relatability. Its unpredictability, and universal humor make it a movie well received, even by critics. While you follow the dysfunctional Griswold family through their tumultuous holiday season riddled with unforeseen disaster and unwelcome visitors, you cannot help but relate to their persistence to rebound and make memories. Despite the comedic nature of the movie, the underlying plot is sentimental, and will make every member of the audience smile. Additionally, the movie’s star-studded cast and producers, such as director, John Hughes, and actor, Chevy Chase, help to avoid the tackiness associated with many holiday comedies.

The Grinch (2018)

The Christmas classic by Dr. Seuss was recently reimagined into a sweet, animated film. The three-dimensional cartoon style villagers of Whoville and the Grinch are very cute, and the work put in by the animation team to convey a whimsical and detailed town is translated throughout the film. The movie also has a great storyline that sticks to the original story, while also enhancing it by adding new scenes so that the watcher isn’t bored. One theme that this retelling of the Grinch includes is the Grinch’s backstory as a child and the complexity of his feelings, which help the Grinch’s character feel more complete. The ending of the movie will warm your heart and leave you satisfied.

Home Alone (1990)

Home Alone is the best Christmas movie to watch this season. With appearances by famous actors like Macaulay Culkin, playing the main character Kevin, and a production team led by John Hughes, this movie is very well put together and thought out. In the movie, Kevin is accidentally left at home by his family as they leave on a trip to Paris. Although the movie starts out with scenes of Kevin enjoying his newfound freedom, the circumstances quickly turn sour when two thieves plan to invade his home. The movie humorously imagines the wild creativity of a boy defending his home, while also keeping close to the Christmas theme. Overall, the movie’s plot is extremely festive, engaging, and worth a view by anyone this Christmas.