16 Best Christmas Movies of All Time

16 Best Christmas Movies of All Time

Everybody has their favorite Christmas movies they watch over and over every year during the holiday season—the ones that can get you into the Christmas spirit as soon as you hit play. 

Here are 16 of the best Christmas movies, in no particular order, that is guaranteed to put you in the Christmas mood or introduce you to some great holiday classics!

1) It's A Wonderful Life

It's A Wonderful Life is regarded as one of the best American films ever. Frank Capra's 1946 classic tells the story of George Bailey, a man who has spent his entire life giving to others in need. 

When he finally tries to take some time for himself, George finds that the people in his town have taken care of him long enough, and it is time he takes care of himself. The film stars James Stewart as George Bailey and Donna Reed as Mary Hatch Bailey.

2) Miracle on 34th Street

Miracle on 34th Street is the quintessential holiday classic. Starring Maureen O'Hara and John Payne, this 1947 gem tells the story of a Macy's Santa who may or may not be the real thing. 

It's an excellent choice for kids, as it covers all belief systems and emphasizes that happiness comes from within.

3) A Christmas Story

Set in the 1940s, A Christmas Story is a movie about a young boy who wants nothing more than to get a Red Ryder BB gun for Christmas. The young boy, Ralphie Parker (Peter Billingsley), spends all day convincing his parents that he deserves the BB gun. 

However, it seems as if Ralphie won't get what he wants this year.

4) Elf

Elf is a 2003 American comedy film directed by Jon Favreau. The movie stars Will Ferrell as Buddy, an elf who mistakenly crawls into Santa's bag of gifts and is transported to the North Pole. 

He grows up unaware that he is human until his father shows up on Christmas Eve. Santa offers to let Buddy spend one night in New York City as a human so he can experience life outside the North Pole and find his true identity.

5) National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation

National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation is one of the best Christmas movies ever made. With Chevy Chase as Clark Griswold, it's full of holiday cheer and hilarity. It also has a killer soundtrack with songs like Silver Bells and Jingle Bell Rock. 

This movie will bring you back to those nostalgic days when life was simpler, and everything seemed possible.

6) White Christmas

White Christmas is a classic similar to It's a Wonderful Life. Released in 1954, it was the first feature-length film to use three color processes: black and white, sepia tone, and two shades of blue-green tint. 

The movie stars Bing Crosby and Danny Kaye, whose performance is delightfully manic. The showstopper of the film is White Christmas.

7) The Polar Express

The Polar Express is a magical story about a young boy who boards the train to the North Pole and embarks on an extraordinary adventure. The film features Tom Hanks, Eddie Deezen, David Krumholtz, and many others. 

Written by Chris Van Allsburg and directed by Robert Zemeckis, this 2004 film has become a holiday favorite for many people.

8) How the Grinch Stole Christmas

The Grinch is a fictional character created by Dr. Seuss in his 1957 book, How the Grinch Stole Christmas. The Grinch has red fur and an attitude that makes him one of the most beloved characters in children's literature. 

He lives on Mount Crumpit with his faithful dog, Max. Despite his sour disposition, the Grinch has a soft spot for children and their happiness.

9) A Charlie Brown Christmas

A Charlie Brown Christmas is a 1965 animated television special based on the comic strip Peanuts by Charles M. Schulz. 

It was the first Christmas special to air on television and remains one of the most beloved and recognized specials.

10) Home Alone

Home Alone is a 1990 American family comedy film written and directed by Chris Columbus. The film stars Macaulay Culkin as Kevin McCallister, an 8-year-old mistakenly left behind when his family flies to Paris for their Christmas vacation. 

Kevin initially relishes being home alone and having the house to himself, but soon has to contend with two burglars, played by Joe Pesci and Daniel Stern.

11) Die Hard

Die Hard is a 1988 American action film directed by John McTiernan. The movie stars Bruce Willis as John McClane, a New York City cop who finds himself in the middle of an attack on the Nakatomi Plaza office building in Los Angeles.

12) Bad Santa

Bad Santa is one of the best Christmas movies out there. It tells the story of a man (played by Billy Bob Thorton) who dresses up as Santa and robs malls during the holiday season. 

And he makes some unlikely friends that change his life for the better. So grab some cocoa, grab your friends, grab a blanket, and get ready to snuggle up with this hilarious classic movie!

13) Batman Returns

Batman Returns is a 1992 American superhero film directed by Tim Burton, based on the DC Comics character Batman. 

The film stars Michael Keaton as Bruce Wayne/Batman, Danny DeVito as Oswald Cobblepot/The Penguin, Michelle Pfeiffer as Selina Kyle/Catwoman, and Christopher Walken as Max Shreck.

14) Kiss Kiss Bang Bang

Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang is a detective story set in Hollywood. It tells the story of a thief and an actor who team up to find a killer. 

The movie is filled with twists, turns, and suspenseful moments sure to keep you on the edge of your seat!

15) The Nightmare Before Christmas

This stop-motion animated musical fantasy film is one of the most beloved holiday films, and it's easy to see why. The Nightmare Before Christmas tells the story of Jack Skellington (voiced by Chris Sarandon), a Halloween-themed being who stumbles across Christmastown and decides to make it his new home. 

However, he soon finds that not all is as merry and bright as he thought.

16) Gremlins

The 1984 classic film Gremlins is about a boy who unknowingly breaks three important rules about caring for his pet and unleashes a horde of malevolent creatures in a small town. 

It stars Zach Galligan, Phoebe Cates, and Christopher Lee. The film has spawned two sequels, one in 1990 and another in 1994.

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