The Christmas season is a very busy time of year. It’s always nice to unwind in the evening, make some popcorn, and enjoy some Christmas movies for the entire family to enjoy.
So if you want to take some time out of your busy schedule and enjoy some heartwarming entertainment, I hope this list that includes some very popular holiday movies will be helpful. I have seen every one of these at least once, and many of them several times. They are suitable for all ages too, so you can gather then entire family to watch any of them.
A Dog Named Christmas
I’m going to start with a personal favorite. Hallmark movies always tug at the heartstrings, and this excellent story is no exception. A Dog Named Christmas is not only my favorite holiday movie, but a favorite from Hallmark. I’ve never watched a Hallmark movie that I didn’t enjoy, but some are particularly noteworthy for their excellence.
This movie has a 4.9 out of 5 star rating from Amazon customers. If you have already seen this movie then you will probably agree it’s a rating that is well deserved.
A Dog Named Christmas is about the McCray family and their son Todd, who live on a farm in the midwest. Todd, who has a learning disability, absolutely loves animals, particularly dogs.
An animal shelter declares they are going to have an “adopt a dog for Christmas” program in an effort to find good homes for abandoned pets.
Todd decides to make it his goal to find as many homes as possible for the dogs. There is one dog in particular that Todd really bonds with, and he wants to bring the pet home.
Todd’s father is very much against this. George says he’s concerned that Todd will get too attached to the dog, and that he may not be adequately prepared to look after an animal. George believes Todd will be heartbroken if he has to return the dog to the shelter.
Through a series of flashbacks we learn the real reason for George’s reluctance.
This is a great story, particularly for animal lovers. The McCrays are ordinary people that anyone could relate to, It’s a feel good story you will love.
The Waltons Christmas Story The Homecoming
One of the most popular TV series in the 70s was The Waltons. This excellent program was a realistic depiction of life during the Great Depression. The Homecoming movie introduced the Walton family to millions of viewers.
This story is a classic. Times are very difficult for almost everyone in the 1930s. Patriarch John Walton has gone to find work away from home, leaving his wife Olivia home with their seven children and his elderly parents. When John does not return home on Christmas Eve, eldest son John boy goes to look for him.
The characters of John and Olivia Walton were recast for the subsequent TV series. Both the movie and series emphasize the bonds of family and endurance during difficult times. I highly recommend this film.
TCM Greatest Classic Christmas Films
If you enjoy classic movies, you may like this selection of four of the greatest classic Christmas films from Turner Classic Movies.
It includes one of my personal favorites, Christmas in Connecticut with Barbara Stanwyk. She plays a writer for a popular magazine. Her articles are about life on a Connecticut farm with her husband and children, and includes many fabulous recipes.
As Christmas approaches, her boss decides it would be nice to have a war hero visit her home over the holidays. The problem is, she is actually a single woman who can’t cook anything. How can she pull this off without getting into trouble and losing her job?
Another film in this collection is The Shop Around the Corner, which stars James Stewart and Margaret Sullavan. They work together at the same store and do not like each other at all. What they don’t know is they are corresponding with each other as anonymous pen pals . What will happen when this is finally revealed?
The third movie is A Christmas Carol. This is a 1930s version of the classic Dickens story.
The fourth film is It Happened on Fifth Avenue concerns a homeless New York city man who ends up in a boarded up mansion while the owner is away for the winter months. He soon invites other people who are down on their luck to live with him until they find permanent homes.
This little known movie is actually very touching and has a nice message.
The Polar Express
A list of best Christmas movies would not be complete without The Polar Express. This is a wonderful fantasy movie that adults can enjoy as much as kids.
The story takes place on Christmas Eve. A young boy is a passenger on a train that is headed to Santa’s home. It’s a visually beautiful film and nice story as the boy is also on a journey of self discovery.
I’m not sure we ever outgrow the enjoyment of watching fantasy stories. The visuals almost steal the show here, but it’s also worth watching for the good story. It might be a bit intense for really young children, but school aged kids should enjoy it as much as adults. I’ve watched it several times, and it never loses its magic.
Miracle on 34th Street
Many people would agree that Miracle on 34th Street is the quintessential Christmas film. One of the reasons is the perfect casting of Edmund Gwenn as Kris Kringle and Natalie Wood as Susan. It’s an annual tradition for many to watch this movie during the holidays.
This particular DVD has a few special features that are very good. It includes both the original black and white and colorized versions. Maureen OHara, who played Susan’s mother, provides commentary. There also are short features about the Macys Thanksgiving parade and a look behind the scenes.
The story is so well known it hardly needs any introduction. Natalie Wood played perhaps one of the best children’s role of all time, and of course it launched a successful career at a very young age.
The Santa Clause
Tim Allen was at the height of his fame thanks to the Home Improvement series when he starred in The Santa Clause. This is another one of those Christmas movies that any age can enjoy.
He plays Scott, a single dad with a son named Charlie. Late at night on Christmas Eve Scott and Charlie hear a noise on the roof. Scott calls out from inside the house, and sees someone fall into the snow and disappear.
However, his clothing is left behind, and it’s the suit that Santa wears. A note is attached saying if anyone finds the clothing they should wear them and finish delivering the presents.
That’s exactly what Scott does after some coaxing from his son. As it turned out, their adventure was just beginning. An elf informs Scott that whoever wears the suit has agreed to assume the identity of Santa and that he will be expected to return the following year to be Santa full time.
Over the next several months, Scott’s appearance begins to change and he starts to crave Christmas related food. Charlie informs his mother that his dad is the new Santa, and of course she’s concerned that Scott is encouraging Charlie to believe this.
The Santa Clause is a comedy with a big dose of fantasy and fun to watch. The relationship between Tim Allens’ character, and Eric Lloyd, who plays Charlie, is part of what makes this movie work. They made a good father and son team.
Image is from Pixabay and has been altered by the author.