My Top 10 Favorite Christmas Movies

Can you believe Christmas is in less than two weeks?

Yeah, me neither. Despite my best efforts, I just can’t seem to get myself into the Christmas spirit. The seasonal depression is hitting hard this year.

I won’t give up though, and next to the holiday tunes (check out my Christmas Spotify playlist in the sidebar), another seasonal staple that always brightens my mood are the holiday movies! So here’s a list of my favorites, in no particular order.

Nortina’s Top 10 Christmas Movies

1. The Polar Express (2004)

The family’s always teasing me about this one. Yep, I’m thirty years old and I still watch kids’ movies. I’m not ashamed. And sure, the animation in this film is a bit unsettling at times, but the magic of the story and its soundtrack inspires me to… BELIEVE!

2. Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas (2000)

Jim Carrey outdid himself in this one and created a generation of little Grinches. How many of us randomly quote lines from this movie?

“This whole Christmas season is stupid, stupid, stupid!”

“Brilliant! You reject your own nose because it represents the glitter of commercialism!”

3. A Christmas Carol (1997)

The Charles Dickens classic is arguably the greatest Christmas story of all time. It’s had countless film adaptations, so you’ll see it appear a few times on this list. Of the ones that stick to the original story, Patrick Stewart’s is my favorite.

4. Home Alone (1990)

Are you even a millennial if you’ve never watched this movie growing up?! It’s a classic in my house, and definitely the inspiration to my Holiday Hooligans series.

5. Last Holiday (2006)

Mom and I recently had a debate about whether this film is considered a Christmas movie. It takes place during the holidays, and the climax happens during a New Year’s Eve celebration, so I’m saying yes!

6. Scrooged (1988)

Some parts of this film definitely didn’t age well, but it’s still a fun watch. And as a Scrooge-like television executive, Bill Murray absolutely understood the assignment!

7. This Christmas (2007)

This movie was released the day after Thanksgiving, and I remember it being a family affair for Black people because that theater was packed! And we all speculated what Chris Brown’s character’s secret was. Turns out it wasn’t all that original, but the movie is still hilarious!

8. Almost Christmas (2016)

Another family Christmas movie with a similar plot to This Christmas. I used to call it the Black Family Christmas Movie Formula, until I saw the next film on this list and realized that label was a little biased. All of our families are a bit wacky at the holidays!

9. Happiest Season (2020)

This film was released in a year when not a lot of us were happy, and boy did we need it! Like the previous two movies, it has the plot of your classic family Christmas drama: the child with the secret, sister-sister sibling rivalry, the cheating husband, the matriarch/patriarch trying to pull off the perfect family Christmas, and hilarious holiday hijinks all around!

10. A Diva’s Christmas Carol (2000)

Closing out my list with another adaptation of the Charles Dickens tale is the Vanessa Williams-led TV film that gave us all a Heartquake!

Anybody else wish that song was officially released? I would definitely have it in my Spotify playlist!

Honorable Mentions

There have been so many great Christmas movies made over the years, it’s hard to come up with a list of only 10. And I haven’t even gotten into the ones of the Lifetime/Hallmark variety—some of them are tolerable. 😉 So before I let you go, I want to share a few that didn’t quite make the list, but maybe they made your top 10…

11. Snowglobe (2007)

Apparently this isn’t the only “snow globe” Christmas movie, and not even the only one Christina Milian stars in, but this one has a special place in my heart because I definitely have a family that would drive me to want to live in a snow globe where it’s Christmas all year round!

12. FX’s A Christmas Carol (2019)

A very dark, slow burn reimagining of the classic tale that should probably come with trigger warnings. This Ebenezer Scrooge has done some terrible things and truly cannot be saved, and I think that’s why I like it so much. It definitely brings out the literary/film critic in me. I can talk about this film endlessly, so if you want a separate review on it, let me know in the comments!

13. Jack Frost (1998)

As the daughter of a musician who also died way too soon, I will always love this film. Of course, my dad was still alive when it was first released, so it’s taken on new meaning since he’s been gone. This is a heartwarming family film that will have you wiping away tears at times.

And those are my top favorite Christmas movies! Hmm, I feel lighter and merrier already just thinking about the joy watching these films brings (well, all but one of them). Most of these are available on streaming or are currently in the movie rotation of our favorite cable channels (TBS, TNT, Freeform, AMC, FX), so if you’re feeling down in the dumps this Christmas like me, I encourage you to watch them, and hopefully they will lift your spirits too!

Do you have a favorite Christmas movie not mentioned on this list? Let’s continue the conversation in the comments!

By the way, I can’t take full credit for this idea. I was actually inspired by fellow blogger Peggy Jaeger. You can check out her top 10 list here.

logo: cartoon of girl with glass and her hair tied in a bun reading a book



6 thoughts on “My Top 10 Favorite Christmas Movies

  1. I’ve never seen some of these, so I’ve got some great movies to watch now!

    I’m what you might call a Judy Garland enthusiast, so one of my favorites is Meet Me in St. Louis. The song “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” was written for Judy to sing in this movie. It is sooooo good. 💗💗

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Oooh, I’ve never seen FX’s A Christmas Carol, that looks right up my alley. I’m definitely going to have to track that down and watch it. I love this whole list, but I would also add: ‘Love, Actually’ and ‘A Bad Moms Christmas.’

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I think you’ll like it! I thought it was on Hulu, but it looks like Amazon Prime has it right now. In any case, I’m sure FX will play it again sometime between now and Christmas, so you can probably catch it then.

      I’ve heard good reviews about A Bad Moms Christmas, so I’ll have to check it out too.

      Liked by 1 person

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