Shannon’s Top 10 Holiday Movie Picks


It’s the holidays and the one time of year we let ourselves indulge in the pleasure of watching the same old movies over and over again.  It’s a tradition in our house to watch the classics at least once, if not 10 times before Christmas arrives.  So in honor of all those great movies I thought I’d give you THE (ok, MY) top ten holiday movie guide.

10.  [typography font=”Delius Swash Caps” size=”20″ size_format=”px” color=”#f50c2b”]Planes, Trains, & Automobiles[/typography] :  Bet you didn’t remember that this was a holiday movie did you?  Well, I’m putting it in the #10 position because it’s technically about Thanksgiving but it deserves to be on this list.  Steve Martin is desperately trying to get home to his family when he teams up with John Candy in a cross country adventure.  Steve Martin delivers 2 monologues of noteworthy mention here, almost peed my pants, watch the movie…you’ll know it when you see it.  (Not for young viewers due to language choice)

9.   [typography font=”Delius Swash Caps” size=”20″ size_format=”px” color=”#f50c2b”]The Polar Express[/typography]:  New to this household but very quickly becoming a favorite with not only my oldest son but me as well.  Yes, it has some creepy characters and the teeth on the children seem abnormally large but the wonder and belief that it inspires is magical.

8.   [typography font=”Delius Swash Caps” size=”20″ size_format=”px” color=”#f50c2b”]Holiday Inn & White Christmas[/typography]:  These two must simply be put together, only because they are essentially the same thing.  Holiday Inn starred Bing Crosby and Fred Astaire (personal dance hero of mine) where they turned an old Connecticut farmhouse into an entertainment venue.  Twelve years later White Christmas was made with almost the same plot and cast…the only reason I give it a mention on my list is because WC takes place in Vermont!

7.   [typography font=”Delius Swash Caps” size=”20″ size_format=”px” color=”#f50c2b”]Home Alone[/typography]:  We’ve all seen it; a kid gets left behind by his family who decides to spend Christmas in Paris.  I don’t care how many kids you have or how crazy the holidays are it’s just not believable that you forget your kid until you are an ocean away (maybe down the street but an ocean?).  The kid’s hilarious hijinks as he outwits some neighborhood holiday burglars secure him a place on this list.  Note, NOT appropriate for boys under age 10 without a “do not try this at home” disclaimer before the movie starts.

6.   [typography font=”Delius Swash Caps” size=”20″ size_format=”px” color=”#f50c2b”]A Christmas Carol[/typography]: My personal favorite version is the Muppet Christmas Carol (there’s a scene with Beaker and Bunsen that makes me lol every time I see it) but really any one is a classic.  Who doesn’t like to see a heart change in a Bah Hum Bug during the holidays?

5.  [typography font=”Delius Swash Caps” size=”20″ size_format=”px” color=”#f50c2b”]It’s A Wonderful Life[/typography] :  Distraught business man George Bailey decides that it might be a better world if he weren’t in it when God sends the angel Clarence to show him a vision of what that world would be like.   There’s a lot to love about this movie; great acting, feel good story line, and a happy ending involving a kid, a bell, and an angel getting his wings.  Awwww!

4.   [typography font=”Delius Swash Caps” size=”20″ size_format=”px” color=”#f50c2b”]The Cartoon Collective: Grinch/Rudolph/Frosty/Charlie Brown[/typography]:  Christmas is just not Christmas without sitting down and watching these classics on TV.  Not DVD (which is pretty cool!) but watch them on TV.  I’ve been watching them for all the years of my life and now so is Aden.  I remember other Christmas cartoons growing up (does anyone remember the one about a very smart mouse who didn’t believe in Santa?  What was the name of that one anyway?), but these 4 have stood the test of time and maybe someday my grandkids will watch them as well.

3.   [typography font=”Delius Swash Caps” size=”20″ size_format=”px” color=”#f50c2b”]Elf[/typography]:  The story of Buddy the Man-Boy who discovers that he’s been adopted and goes to NYC in search of his birth father.  Quite possibly Will Ferrell’s crowning achievement in his acting career, this movie is as enjoyable for kids as it is for adults.  Best memory…Buddy drowning his spaghetti in Maple Syrup.  What…Buddy is from Vermont?

2.   [typography font=”Delius Swash Caps” size=”20″ size_format=”px” color=”#f50c2b”]A Christmas Story[/typography]:  Ralphie who wants nothing but a Red Rider BB Gun has humored many a family at this time of year.  Who can forget the kid who stuck his tongue to the cold, metal pole?  Or that leg lamp the father won?  Or the most memorable line from the whole movie…say it with me now…”You’ll shoot your eye out!”  Enough said.

1.  [typography font=”Delius Swash Caps” size=”20″ size_format=”px” color=”#f50c2b”]National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation[/typography] : 

Maybe the fact that I’ve chosen this as my #1 holiday movie gives you an idea of what I truly find funny.  Talk about putting the “fun” in “dysfunctional”, if we’re all serious with one another don’t we have some of those characters in our families as well.  Isn’t that why it’s so funny?  Because if we’re honest, poor Clark Griswold’s crazy family is much like ours.  It’s the one movie I can watch over and over again and laugh like the first time I saw it.

So there you have it, your ultimate holiday movie guide (in my humble opinion :).  What do you agree with, disagree with?  What did I miss?  I’d love to hear your thoughts.


  1. “Twas the Night Before Christmas” wss the one with the mouse. And do you remember the California Raisins Christmas special? Kind of hokey. But fun and i learned what wasialling actually was from that one.


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