Everything ElseMovie Reviews

11 Best Christmas Movies to Get Into The Holiday Spirit

As much as decorating a tree, baking cakes and cookies, and downing delicious Christmas dinner is wonderful, one of the best holiday traditions is snuggling up on the sofa with a mug of hot cocoa and gearing up for a marathon of gooey, hearty Christmas films.

Whether you’re in the mood for some true-blue classics, tearjerkers, or family-friendly movies, we’ve compiled a list of the 11 best Christmas films to get you into the spirit of Christmas!

Disclaimer: Availability of films on respective streaming platforms may be subject to change.

11. The Holiday (2006)

“I suppose I think about love more than anyone really should. I am constantly amazed by its sheer power to alter and define our lives”
Image Credit: www.amazon.co.uk, www.newstatesman.com

Synopsis: To get away from troubling relationship issues, two women from different sides of the Atlantic Ocean swap homes and lives for Christmas. What love has in store for them is totally different than what they planned, and their lives change unexpectedly after they meet two local men.

Starring: Cameron Diaz, Kate Winslet, Jude Law, Jack Black

Rating: PG-13

Watch on: Netflix

Emotion meter: Oodles of sappy love, and you may have a whim to go on vacation to a quaint English village

10. The Polar Express (2004)

“Just remember, the true spirit of Christmas lies in your heart.”
Image Credit: www.youtube.com/user/WarnerBrosOnline

Synopsis: Based on The Polar Express by Chris Van Allsburg, this animated adventure tells the tale of a little boy who takes the Polar Express to the North Pole on Christmas Eve and learns about what the spirit of Christmas is truly about.

Starring: Tom Hanks, Daryl Sabrara, Nona Gaye, Jimmy Bennett, Eddie Deezen

Rating: PG

Watch on: Netflix

Emotion Meter:  Emotional roller-coaster, happy tears by the end.

9. The Christmas Chronicles (2018)

“I’m Santa Claus, Teddy, not Yoda”
Image Credit: www.netflix.com

Synopsis: Trouble-makers Teddy and Kate Pierce have the most outlandish Christmas plans: To catch jolly old St Nick in the act of leaving presents, and on camera. But when their efforts to do so go awry and set Santa’s perfect gift delivery plans back, it’s up to them to save Christmas.

Starring: Kurt Russell, Judah Lewis, Darby Camp, Lamorne Morris, Kimberly Williams-Paisley

Rating: PG

Watch on: Netflix

Emotion Meter: Lots of excitement and singing along!

8. Love Actually (2003)

“If you look for it, I’ve got a sneaky feeling you’ll find that love actually is all around.”
Image Credit: www.marieclaire.com

Synopsis: Set in London over Christmas time, Love Actually follows the lives of eight very different couples and their complicated relationships. Just because it’s Christmas, it doesn’t mean that trysts with love get any easier.

Starring: Alan Rickman, Emma Thompson, Hugh Grant, Keira Knightley, Colin Firth, Laura Linney, Martine McCutcheon, Liam Neeson, Bill Nighy, Rowan Atkinson, Martin Freeman, Joanna Page

Rating: R

Watch on: Netflix

Emotion Meter: Dripping in cheese, lots of hope, lots of heart.

7. Die Hard (1988)

“If this is their idea of Christmas, I gotta be here for New Year’s.”
Image Credit: www.nytimes.com

Synopsis: New York City police detective John McClane arrives in Los Angeles to spend Christmas with his estranged wife. However, on Christmas Eve, he suddenly finds himself in the middle of a terrorist takeover, one that his wife is held hostage in.

Starring: Bruce Willis, Alan Rickman, Alexander Godunov, Bonnie Bedelia

Rating: R

Watch on: Google Play

Emotion Meter: Fast-paced action, loads of blowing stuff up.

6. Jingle Jangle: A Christmas Journey (2020)

“Just because you fell down, don’t mean you can’t pick yourself up again.”
Image Credit: www.deadline.com

Synopsis: Decades after a beloved apprentice betrays him, an eccentric toymaker’s life changes when his kind and adventurous granddaughter sets foot into it. With a magical invention and full of Christmas cheer, an imaginary world comes to life in this holiday tale.

Starring: Forest Whitaker, Madalen Mills, Keegan Michael-Key, Hugh Bonneville, Anika Noni Rose, Phylicia Rashad, Lisa Davina Philip, Ricky Martin

Rating: PG

Watch on: Netflix 

Emotion Meter: Filled to the brim with Christmas magic, this tale leaves you with lots of smiles and warm hearts.

5. The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993)

“There’s children throwing snowballs, instead of throwing heads, they’re busy building toys and absolutely no one’s dead”
Image Credit: www.pixelstalk.net, www.mentalfloss.com

Synopsis: Jack Skellington, Pumpkin King of Halloween Town, has grown weary of the same old Halloween celebrations year after year and is seeking something new. Stumbling onto Christmas Town, ruled by Santa Claus, Jack discovers the magic of the unfamiliar holiday and takes it home to Halloween Town, but his attempts bring with it a lot of confusion.

Starring: Chris Sarandon, Catharine O’Hara, William Hickey, Glenn Shadix, Ken Page

Rating: PG

Watch on: OSN Store

Emotion Meter: Classic Tim Burton fashion – a little dark, a little creepy, but delightful

4. Home Alone 2: Lost in New York (1992)

“Don’t You Know A Kid Always Wins Against Two Idiots?”
Image Credit: www.livein.com

Synopsis: Kevin McCallister is separated from his family at the start of Christmas vacation, and ends up in…New York. With enough cash and credit cards on hand, Kevin’s ready to take on New York City, but little does he know that the Wet Bandits are out of prison, bound for New York, and plotting a holiday heist. With loads of pluck, brains, and booby traps, Kevin’s ready to show the bandits a Christmas Eve they’ll never forget!

Starring: Macaulay Culkin, Joe Pesci, Daniel Stern, Catharine O’Hara, John Heard

Rating: PG

Watch on: Google Play 

Emotion Meter: ROFL x 1000.

3. Home Alone (1990)

“Will you please tell Santa that instead of presents this year, I just want my family back.”
Image Credit: www.bbc.com

Synopsis: The runt of the family, eight-year-old Kevin Mcallister is suddenly the man of his house overnight. Left alone at home for Christmas vacation, he gets busy to celebrate Christmas, Kevin style. However, when two bumbling burglars break into his territory and underestimate him, it’s up to Kevin to fight them off with some truly hilarious tricks and traps.

Starring: Macaulay Culkin, Joe Pesci, Daniel Stern, Catharine O’Hara, John Heard

Rating: PG

Watch on: Google Play

Emotion Meter: Will leave you laughing till you’re in literal splits.

2. How the Grinch Stole Christmas (2000)

“Now you listen to me, young lady! Even if we’re horribly mangled, there’ll be no sad faces on Christmas”
Image Credit: www.mentalfloss.com

Synopsis: With grand festivities and extravagant presents, no other town does Christmas like Whoville and no one loves Christmas more than the Whos. On the outskirts of Whoville however, lives the mean-spirited Grinch who abhors Christmas just as much as the Whos love it. Sweet little Cindy Lou Who,  with her investigative spirit and kind heart, decides to befriend the Grinch and sets out to find the true spirit of Christmas.

Starring: Jim Carrey, Taylor Momsen, Kelley, Jeffery Tambor, Christine Baranski

Rating: PG

Watch on: Netflix

Emotion Meter: Watch out, your heart’s going to grow three sizes!

1. It’s A Wonderful Life (1946)

“What is it you want, Mary? What do you want? You want the moon? Just say the word, and I’ll throw a lasso around it and pull it down.”
Image Credit: www.amazon.com

Synopsis: George Bailey cannot celebrate Christmas, he has too many problems and his only solution is to end everything. About to jump from a bridge, George is stopped just in time by an angel sent from heaven, who shows him what life would have been like if he had never existed.

Starring: James Stewart, Donna Reed, Lionel Barrymore, Thomas Mitchell

Rating: PG

Watch on: Google Play

Emotion Meter: Unless you want to be dehydrated, stock up on lots of water and loads of tissue boxes.