Christmas is the only holiday that also is referred to as a "season" - a season complete with elaborate light displays, hundreds of Christmas songs played 24 hours a day on radio stations beginning on or before Thanksgiving through the new year and not to mention numerous movies that are dedicated to the holiday.
Countdowns and top 10 lists are mainly a matter of opinion. With that being said, as a lover of all things Christmas, I will share with you my top 10 list of my personal favorite Christmas flicks.
I own about 35 Christmas movies, which I watch all year long and almost exclusively from November through Christmas. But I found it hard to choose only 10, so I cheated a little.
There are so many great holiday films that only have a scene or two of Christmas in them, but can be classified as Christmas movies. I decided to keep these out of my countdown to keep it at 10, but they do deserve a mention. Some of my favorite holiday related movies include: "It's a Wonderful Life," "White Christmas," "Holiday Inn," "Love Actually," "The Nightmare Before Christmas" and "The Family Man."
Now, my countdown from No. 10 to 1:
10. "Rudolf the Red Nosed Reindeer" (1964) - The stop-motion animated television specials by Rankin and Bass are a must-see during Christmastime for me. Even though Santa is kind of a jerk to Rudolf in the beginning, it's still one of my favorites. Who couldn't love Hermey, an elf who dreams of becoming a dentist, the loveable Abominable Snowman and the island of misfit toys.
9. "The Snowman" (1982) - This movie is based on the Raymond Briggs book, published in 1978. A young boy builds a snowman, who then comes to life and takes him on a journey to meet Father Christmas and his reindeer. I love how the story is told only through animation and music.
8. "Miracle on 34th Street" (1947) - A few versions of this movie have been made, but this is my favorite. But I always wonder - is Kris Kringle REALLY Santa Claus? I guess we'll never know for sure.
7. "A Christmas Carol" - Here is where I cheated. There have been so many different versions of this movie made, two have made my list, so I decided to lump them together.
"Scrooge," later released as "A Christmas Carol" in the United States (1951) is one of my favorites. Alastair Sim plays a wonderful Ebenezer Scrooge in this adaptation of the Charles Dickens novel.
"The Muppet Christmas Carol" (1992) is my other favorite version of this film. I love the Muppets and how they incorporate them into the film in ways such as Mr. Fezziwig's character is changed to Mr. Fozziwig, played by Fozzie Bear and adding a second Marley - Jacob and Robert Marley (brothers) - played by Statler and Waldorf. I also like the addition of the narration by Charles Dickens, played by Gonzo and his friend Rizzo the Rat.
6. "The Polar Express" (2004) - I really like the computer-animation in this film. It adds to the mystery and almost haunting feel of the movie at times. This movie has a sort of magical feel to me, something that reminds me of how Christmas made me feel when I was younger and excited for Santa's visit.
5. "Scrooged" (1988) - I just love Bill Murray and he is so great as Frank Cross in this film. It's a play on "A Christmas Carol," but done in a funny and twisted way. And for whatever reason, I think it's funny how he talks to the audience at the end of the movie when everyone is singing "Put a Little Love in Your Heart," and says "Feed me Seymour, feed me!" What is that all about?
4. "Elf" (2003) - I wasn't always a huge fan of Will Ferrell, but, man, is this movie hilarious! I am just dying to answer my phone, "Buddy the elf, what's your favorite color?" There are so many lines in this movie that I constantly recite. It is just so ridiculous it's funny! "I just like to smile, smiling's my favorite."
3. "A Christmas Story" (1983) - This is one either you love or you hate - and I LOVE! I think I know every line in this movie and my Dad always tests me when I visit them on Christmas eve by turning on the marathon and listening me recite the words before the actors say them on the television. Something that annoys my mother to no end. Sorry, Mom. This is another one that has some pretty classic lines. The old man just cracks me up! "Fra-gee-lay, that must be Italian," "You mundane noodle," "Rotten hasticklefifer!"
2. "National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation" (1989) - Oh, the Griswolds. Clark just can't catch a break, but it wouldn't be as funny if he did. I love this movie from beginning to end, but I also appreciate the little things that people may not notice, like when Clark brings a present to his boss Frank Shirley and is told to "put it over there with the others, Greaseball." When Clark turns around, there are dozens of wrapped presents in the same exact size and shape as the present he brought. And when Ellen throws her mug into the bushes after trying to get Clark to come inside after he begins to go crazy from all of the unfortunate events. But I think my favorite character in the movie is Aunt Bethany. "Is the house on fire Clark?" "No Aunt Bethany, those are the Christmas lights." "Don't throw me down Clark." "I'll try not to Aunt Bethany."
1. "A Charlie Brown Christmas" (1965) - I am a Peanuts nut! Poor Charlie Brown, he's another guy who can't catch a break. No one listens to him as the director of the Christmas play, he chooses the wrong tree and no one sends him a Christmas card. This always was the movie I watched while decorating the Christmas tree when I was younger. I also have lots of ornaments and other Christmas trinkets with Peanuts characters. I love the music in the film by the Vince Guaraldi Trio and even have one as my Christmastime ringtone.