At a time when Christmas trees illuminate the night with their bright lights and ornaments and “Happy Holidays” signs are littered throughout stores and restaurants, it can be hard to keep focused on schoolwork when baking cookies feels more appropriate. The holiday season is the perfect time to relax and soak in the festive atmosphere.
Nothing beats curling up in a blanket with a warm cup of hot chocolate watching Christmas movies, especially when there are so many classics to choose from. Lucky for us, programs such as ABC Family’s 25 Days of Christmas take care of that. There are many types of “classic” holiday movies. There are the films that invoke a nostalgic and warm feeling, such as “Miracle on 34th Street” and “It’s A Wonderful Life,” or ones that make us laugh like “The Santa Clause .”
What draws us to these classics? Perhaps it’s the familiarity. Movies like “A Christmas Story” and “Home Alone” and don’t forget “A Charlie Brown Christmas ” are so quotable and popular and movies everyone just knows. Any movie that is worthy of a 24-hour marathon can definitely be deemed a classic, such as “A Christmas Story.” That movie has become so engrained in our holiday hearts that Ralphie’s house has even turned into a museum.
“A Christmas Story” has the ability to make us laugh over and over again, which is why we continue to watch it — though perhaps not for the full 24 hours. Watching Ralphie come downstairs in a bunny suit or the infamous lady leg lamp are elements that stick in our minds when thinking about this movie and they remind us of the holiday season. Even though it’s an older movie, released in 1983, its relevance and entertaining plotline has kept us hooked and probably will continue to entertain us for many years to come.
Other classics may not be deemed so because of the release date. In 2003, Will Ferrell became a holiday character unlike one audiences had ever seen, Buddy the Elf. “Elf” is basically the “Mean Girls” of holiday movies as far as quotability. No one can say they’ve never answered the phone with “Buddy the Elf, what’s your favorite color?” because then they’d be lying. Though it came out more recently than others, it’s become a holiday movie staple. Ferrell is known for becoming characters that become permanently fixated in people’s minds (i.e. Ron Burgundy). Buddy was no exception. “Elf” showed that even in the most stressful of times, hard workweek or rough day at school, the holiday spirit is important and present in everyone.
But of course, no one said it was a requirement these movies have real people in them. Sometimes classics can include a little clay-mation magic, such as “A Year Without a Santa Claus” and “Rudolph, the Red-Nosed Reindeer,” or classic animations, like “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” (not the one with Jim Carrey because that one is frightening). With characters like the Heat Miser and the Grinch himself, these movies are just as “classic” as the others.
The holidays are a time for family as well. Watching these movies showing holiday tales of some of our favorite fictional characters, even spending them with ones like 90s favorites the Pickles family as they celebrate Hanukkah on Rugrats, makes the holiday season more bearable as we trudge through the last weeks of homework and exams. These classics invoke a happy and festive atmosphere perfect to spend with friends and family. Only a cotton-headed ninnymuggins would not like to sit and relax with a good holiday film.
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