This past weekend we celebrated the season with our Annual Stuff Your Stocking Sale here at All Things Fun! This event is always fun. I get to see all kinds of fun, festive stockings people bring in from home. It’s got me thinking about some of my favorite things about the holidays. So let’s take a minute and talk about my 10 favorite holiday movies!
10. Yule Log
Okay, I can hear you all groaning from here. But really how great is it to turn on the TV and wrap presents to some great Christmas music while sitting near the fire. (Without any safety concerns…just saying.)
Bill Murray as a modern day (well, 1988 modern day) Scrooge. This one might be attributed to my love of the 1980’s but it’s my list so you’ll just have to deal with it. (I suspect I’ll be saying that quite a bit.)
8. Muppet Christmas Carol
While not a fan of Michael Caine (unless he’s playing Alfred or a Dirty, Rotten Scoundrel.) I do enjoy Jim Henson’s take on this classic tale. If you haven’t already figured it out yet my personal heroes are my Dad, Douglas Adams and Jim Henson. The Muppets haven’t been the same since his passing. I’m sure this is why I love this dated version so much.
7. Lethal Weapon
Most people forget Christmas is a pretty big character in the first (and in my opinion best) of the Lethal Weapon movies. Our hero suicidal cop Riggs is trying to deal with the holidays without the love of his life. His new partner Murtaugh celebrates his 50th birthday and is dealing with his own mortality. In the end these guys become friends and the movie ends with our heroes sharing Christmas dinner with Murtaugh’s family and Rigg’s dog.
6. Christmas Story
This one appears on almost everyone’s lists. My Dad says it was ripped from his childhood. I just tell him to be careful or he’ll shoot his eye out.
5. How the Grinch Stole Christmas
No, not the movie version I’m talking about the 1966 cartoon directed by Chuck Jones and featuring the baritone voice of Boris Karloff. “Well, in Whoville they say that the Grinch’s heart grew three sizes that day.” My take home from this was always to not forget about others during the holidays. (And maybe not to steal everyone’s stuff.)
4. Charlie Brown Christmas
I think on some level we all identify with Charlie Brown. I know I often find myself saying “I got a rock.” (Sorry, wrong holiday.) Sometime we need to take what life has handed us and see the miracles in what we have. Especially if we have a dog as cool as Snoopy.
3. Emmet Otter’s Jug Band Christmas
Another hold over from my childhood in the days before CGI I remember watching spell bound as Kermit the Frog (while riding a bicycle) introduced me to the world of Frogtown Hollow. Sure, it’s a Muppet version of Gift of the Magi. But my 7 year old self didn’t know that. Directed by Jim Henson it’s full of great lines that make no sense unless you’ve seen the show. You’ll often find me quoting this program all year long. I suppose it reminds me of a simpler time.
2. Miracle on 34th Street
Lots of people love this classic but I claim a special connection with this flick. I love retail, all the way down in my 40-something bones. Long before we had product placement in movies Macy’s and Gimbels were huge characters in this movie. We actually see Mr. Macy and Mr Gimbels (actors of course) in the movie. Makes me miss the days when retail stood for the ideals and values of individuals (like we try to run All Things Fun!) Unless of course I sell-out to Federated Department stores for some ungodly sum of cash. Then forget I said anything.
1. It’s a Wonderful Life
Okay, not a surprise, so sue me. But who doesn’t spend tine around the holidays wondering if the world is actually better for their contribution to it. I’d be less than truthful if I didn’t admit that I’ve wondered would the world be any different without me in it. But then I remember that time I single-handedly saved the world from total destruction and I figure I’m good.
So not to be outdone I asked Dina for her list too!
Dina’s Top 4 Holiday Movies (In no particular order)
4. It’s a Wonderful Life
As you can see we didn’t compare notes. But I often wonder if Dina doesn’t identify with the frustrated world traveller that is George Bailey.
3. Miracle of 34th Street
I know Dina’s not a fan of retail like myself. I can only assume she loves this movie because I know she still believes.
2. Die Hard
In addition to arguably being one of the best action movies of all time. (I said it, so it must be true.) All of the action takes place during Christmas. And who wouldn’t fight a skyscraper full of terrorists to be with the ones we love during Christmas.
1. Year Without A Santa Claus
Now I said this list was in no order of preference but that may not be completely true. This one is Dina’s favorite Christmas production. It’s hard to believe this classic from 1974 is still so popular. Santa starts to feel a bit taken for granted and Mrs. Claus works with Mother’s Nature’s children, Heat Miser and Cold Miser to bring a snowy Christmas to Southtown. “Friends call me Heat Miser, Whatever I touch, starts to melt in my clutch. I’m too much!” Dina & I know all the words to this classic song and often will belt it out in the car on the way home! Maybe Dina identifies with Santa. She’s got a big job and maybe I should make it snow in Southtown for her more often!
There you go. A list of our favorite Holiday Classics. Feel free to send me a note if you feel I missed any holiday greats!
More next week!