Christmas Movies – Part One

Though my kids are grown I still keep a basket of Christmas books under the tree. During their younger years we would spend each night in December cuddled up on the couch reading these books. What beautiful memories! You may recall we did not watch television (after 2002) but we did love to watch movies together. December also meant Christmas movies. Do I love them as much as the books? Not even close! But we did enjoy them.

Last week we decided to renew our holiday movie tradition. Hmmmm, not much out there that I feel like spending time watching. My all-time favorite is A Christmas Carol. I used to insist that this be included, usually amidst groans… but I think everyone eventually outgrew the protests and they actually enjoy it. I love the story and all of those thoughts that come along with it. I also like watching The Nativity Story and The Man Who Invented Christmas. Thank you, thank you to those who actually made a recent clever, quality Christmas movie. Thank you.

Is that it? On my own those are probably the only Christmas movies I care to see over and again. I am going to try and think of other titles we have watched over the years – then next year when we are trying to think of a movie to watch I can come back to this post…

An American Christmas Carol – Haha. Or should I say Ah ha? This was made in 1979 and stars Henry Winkler. I saw it listed and remembered liking it as a child – probably because we all like The Fonz so much. This is actually a pretty good movie – though The Fonz has makeup several millimeters thick on his face to make him an old man. It is a little hard to take – but for a 70s movie we all agreed it wasn’t bad.

The Christmas Story – I think I may have outgrown this one. It definitely has its moments though. I would watch this one again but I wish I could cut out about half the scenes… like the little brother eating his potatoes. Gross. This is a fun one for laughing, particularly for the men in our family. I like to watch it just to watch them laugh. I love to see them laugh.

It’s A Wonderful Life – I always love this movie but I never want to watch it. I just have to force myself to sit down and pay attention long enough to get caught up in the story. Kind of like eating raw vegetables. That first bite of carrot or bell pepper doesn’t come as naturally as that first bite of fudge – but once I start I always like it.

The Polar Express – This is a good one and I would watch this if I had children at my house. Young children. Otherwise I don’t really need to watch this another time. The animation bothers me and if I remember correctly it is longer than it needs to be. Just writing about it makes me want to go have some hot chocolate. I made some homemade marshmallows this weekend and they melt beautifully in hot chocolate… I had better move on.

The Santa Clause series – We never miss watching the first movie of the series. The second one is also cute but borders on obnoxious. I cannot recall the third one because two is about all that I can take. I think the original is clever and Tim Allen is talented, fun to watch and makes me laugh. The “Neil” character is also hard to take.

Miracle on 34th Street – Another one that I don’t ever feel like watching but enjoy once it begins. The old one, not the new one. This is a nice movie to have on and makes you feel like it is Christmas. As I type I am remembering scenes from the movie and I do like it. We should watch it soon.

Home Alone – Why is this considered a Christmas movie? I hope that I never have to watch it again. So loud! LOUD! LOUD!! It reminds me of The Three Stooges. I can’t take it. Thankfully I have never watched any of the sequels.

Christmas with the Kranks – I would watch this again. We were disappointed when it came out because we had just read Skipping Christmas by John Grisham. It is a cute book and the movie doesn’t do it justice, but it is not bad. And Tim Allen… I think I watch it just for the botox scene.

The Grinch – Please, please never make me watch this movie again – or anything with Jim Carrey. I certainly never purchased it but one year our friend kindly loaned it to my children. They enjoyed it. Watched it several times. Returned it. Done. I do, however, love the book. Thank you Dr. Seuss.

Elf – I had heard that this was good and finally watched it two years ago. Ugh. Those were very long 97 minutes. Ugh. Who came up with the idea that “stupid” is funny? There are other movies of this genre and I plan to never see any of them again. Never! I am sorry for those who celebrate Christmas at this level.

As a child we loved the Christmas specials on TV such as Frosty and Rudolph. We have those on DVD but they don’t really tempt me either. We could watch them for nostalgia and any time that young children are with us.

I don’t want to talk about any other Christmas movies. My plan was to write a post about my FAVORITE Christmas movies but I was sidetracked by Hollywood. I just changed the title to include “part one” so that I can get on with my true favorites…

But first I am going to go have some of that hot chocolate with the homemade marshmallows!

Mmmmmm….. Any movie is better with a cup of hot chocolate!

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