Monday, December 17, 2012

Monday Treat: Holiday Movies You Forgot About

Monday, fun day! I've been noticing lately that all of the holiday movies that are playing on television are all of the same old (loved, nonetheless) movies that play over and over in December: Elf, A Christmas Story, Home Alone, etc. However, don't forget about the lesser-knowns! There are some wonderful holiday movies that don't get a lot of play in December. Here are some of my favorites:

Top row, from left:
Joyeux Noël, 2005: This subtitled film focuses on the December 1914 truce between French, Scottish and German soldiers during World War I. The soldiers celebrated Christmas Even together in the trenches amidst the fighting.
Home for the Holidays, 1995: This one stresses me out a bit, but it's still funny if you can loosen up with a glass of wine. Directed by Jodie Foster, this one is centered around a recently-fired woman who returns home to have Thanksgiving with her oddball family.
Emmet Otter's Jugband Christmas, 1977: One of my childhood favorites. This was Jim Henson's first feature film, about Emmet the river otter and his mother, who are poor and looking for ways to buy each other gifts. It has some of the best Christmas songs ever written. (look for the blooper bonus on the DVD!)
Bridget Jones's Diary, 2001: More for the girls, this one is just silly and should be accompanied with boozy eggnog and Christmas cookies.

Middle row, from left:
Wonderboys, 2000: Not necessarily a holiday movie, but set during a school's holiday break: Wonderboys tells the story of James Leer and Professor Tripp: two lost writers and scholars who are trying to make sense of their mediocre lives through moments of pure brilliance. It's also one of the funniest movies ever made.
Little Women, 1994: I saw this in the theater with my mom when I was twelve. It is the sweetest adaptation of Louisa May Alcott's 1868 semi-autobiographical novel about four sisters and their mother in the Civil War Era.
Edward Scissorhands, 1990: Also not quite the "holiday movie" in the traditional sense, anyone my age probably has a special place in their heart for Edward.
Love Actually, 2003: A new classic, I'm sure, Love Actually is just a delight. Told through several different characters' stories as they intertwine through each other's lives, this film proves the point that "love actually does exist."

Bottom row, from left:
The Small One, 1978: My absolute favorite as a kid. I still watch this one every year, usually after a few too many drinks, which finds me bawling on the floor of my parents spare room in front of the tv. This one has a few religious undertones, but it's mostly the story of a boy who has to sell his donkey/best friend. It's touching and unforgettable. It's also a cartoon. (UPDATE! Just found out you can watch the entire movie on Youtube!)
The Christmas Toy, 1986: Another Jim Henson film, I have to admit that this one creeped me out as a kid. I think it was the doll. Regardless, it's about toys that come to life when people aren't in the room, and how they feel when new toys are added.
Home Alone 2, 1992: Don't get me wrong, Home Alone is probably my favorite movie of all time, let alone holiday movie, but don't forget about Home Alone 2: Lost in New York. It is just as good as the original, if not even better. I can recite it to you if you'd like.
The Muppet Christmas Carol, 1992: Last but not least, The Muppet Christmas Carol. There are a lot of adaptations of A Christmas Carol, but none of the others have Beaker in them. Enough said.

What are your favorites?

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