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11 Holiday Movie Classics for the Entire Family to Enjoy

by Maressa Brown on November 7, 2012 at 11:23 AM

elf will ferrell zooey deschanelI'm not one of those people who appreciates the retail industry putting the cart waaaay before the horse by getting their Christmas/Hanukkah/Kwanzaa on well before Thanksgiving -- or worse yet, Halloween! But when it comes to holiday movies, I can't help myself. In fact, I'll snuggle up on the couch to watch a festive, feel-good flick any ol' time of year! Still, it's even more fun when it is actually THE time of year to enjoy classic holiday films with loved ones.

And since that time will be here in the blink of an eye, here are 11 of the best holiday movies parents can share with their kids ...

  1. Elf - Will Ferrell isn't exactly known for his kid-friendly fare, but with this neo-classic -- also starring the always-adorable Zooey Deschanel -- he hit a holiday home-run. It's an irresistibly cute flick the whole family can watch -- and it has a terrific soundtrack, to boot!
  2. The Polar Express - Stellar graphics and Tom Hanks brought the timeless holiday book to life. What's not to love?
  3. A Charlie Brown Christmas - The holiday season just wouldn't be complete until we watch Charles M. Schulz's gang.
  4. A Rugrats Chanukah - It may not be a movie per se, but the special episode of the Nickelodeon tells the story of the Jewish holiday through the eyes of the Rugrats. And you can watch it in full here!
  5. Home Alone - "AHHHHHHHHHH!" (And that's all I have to say about that.)
  6. A Christmas Story - Given how there have been back-to-back airings of this film for entire days on end, this is one you simply can't miss. Literally.
  7. Miracle on 34th Street - You will definitely want to go with the original, Natalie Wood version.
  8. The Nightmare Before Christmas - Sometimes you just need a little Tim Burton creepy meets holiday cheer!
  9. White Christmas - Bing Crosby. Rosemary Clooney. And a classic soundtrack. 'Nuff said.
  10. How the Grinch Stole Christmas - Jim Carrey was BORN to play the Seuss villain! 
  11. It's a Wonderful Life - No holiday film round-up would be complete without the all-time favorite directed by Frank Capra and starring Jimmy Stewart and Donna Reed -- which I totally miss being aired 24/7/365 in December, by the way! While it's probably not a great pick for very little ones, this ultimate holiday film offers some incredibly important life lessons for older kids and adults alike.

What's your favorite holiday film to watch with the kids?


Image via Warner Bros.

Filed Under: movies, christmas, holidays


  • Andi...
    -- Facebook comment from

    Andi Dodd

    November 7, 2012 at 11:28 AM

    Fully agree... most of those I'd watch any time! 

  • naten...


    November 7, 2012 at 11:37 AM

    The one I want to watch with my children they don't hardly show anymore but it's "Nestor, the long eared Donkey"

  • Lilianne
    -- Nonmember comment from


    November 7, 2012 at 11:39 AM
    Original How The Grinch Stole Christmas for the win!

    I also love A Charlie Brown Christmas.
  • NatAndCo


    November 7, 2012 at 11:40 AM
    If i see Elf one more time I'm going to punch will ferrel in the face. Every holiday season at least 5 channels practically have it on repeat. Nightmare Before Christmas is still a favorite though and i can't wait to see Rise of the Guardians. It looks gorgeous.
  • LSeab...


    November 7, 2012 at 11:41 AM

    Home Alone is a GREAT movie. But some of the language is not for young ears...


    I wouldnt let you sleep in my room if you were growing on my ass. LOL

  • craft...


    November 7, 2012 at 11:44 AM
    My fav's are The Muppet Christmas Carol, and National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation.
  • Lilac
    -- Nonmember comment from


    November 7, 2012 at 11:55 AM
    Really I would only call some of these holiday classics because they have withstood the test of time. Elf? Its just wrong. That whole scene with him singing in the bathroom white the girl is naked in the shower and thinks she is alone would be seriously messed up for any other film that wasn't a Holiday film. How about Santa Claus is coming to town, or the life and times of santa claus? Or Nester the long eared donkey or The little drummer boy?
  • sarah
    -- Nonmember comment from


    November 7, 2012 at 11:59 AM
    Jim Carey's version is just called "The Grinch" the animated version is the full name of the book just so people dont get confused.
  • LoriA...


    November 7, 2012 at 12:10 PM

    the christmas story

  • MamaB...


    November 7, 2012 at 1:06 PM

    Rudolph and Frosty are bigs in our house

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