Did you forget about these holiday classics? Christmas is just around the corner, so it’s time to gather around the TV with a cup of hot cocoa and give your favorite holiday films a re-watch. While it’s to each his own when deciding which Christmas movies give you that warm and fuzzy feeling inside, we humbly submit these Gen X classics for your consideration!
Is it really December until you’ve re-watched Scrooged? This 1988 fantasy comedy put a modern twist on Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol. In the movie, Bill Murray plays a nihilistic TV executive who gets visited by the Ghosts of Christmas Past, Present, and Future. Despite meeting mixed reviews upon its initial release, this holiday film has stood the test of time. If you want to see the holiday spirit work its magic on Murray at his most cynical, you really can’t go wrong with Scrooged.
While it’s not your typical Christmas movie, what are the holidays if not an excuse to indulge in anything remotely festive? Die Hard hit theaters in July of 1988, but the film’s story actually took place on Christmas Eve night.
Although it’s easy to get caught up in the action of Bruce Willis taking out dozens of German terrorists, the story is set against the backdrop of a holiday party. Before anyone scolds you for saying Die Hard is your favorite holiday movie, just remember that John McTiernan, the film’s director, wholeheartedly believes it belongs among the Christmas classics.
‘National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation’
If National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation isn’t in your yearly Christmas movie lineup, you are missing out. This 1989 addition to the Chevy Chase-led Vacation film series is filled with countless memorable moments. The film sees Clark Griswold set out to have a “fun old-fashioned family Christmas” in spite of the chaotic antics of his extended family. It delivers the outrageous hilarity typical of the Vacation franchise but with a decisively festive tone.
‘A Christmas Story’
Time to dust off your old leg lamps and put on the 1983 classic film A Christmas Story. Whether you grew up in the 1940s like Ralphie Parker or not, there’s something universally nostalgic about this childhood tale. Plus, there’s a sequel of sorts coming out this season as well!
The film, which is told in a series of vignettes (short, vivid memory-like sequences) follows a winter in the Parker house as young Ralphie becomes obsessed with getting a Red Ryder Carbine Action 200-shot Range Model air rifle for Christmas. However, if you aren’t able to hunt down this classic film, don’t fret. TNT has aired a 24-hour marathon of the film on Christmas Day for the last 24 years!
If there’s one holiday movie that truly checks every box, it would have to be Home Alone. A-list cast giving their all? Check. Absolutely hilarious writing? Check. A heartwarming message that emphasizes the importance of family? Check, check, and check. It’s criminal to go an entire holiday season without at least seeing a couple of clips from Home Alone or its sequel Home Alone 2.
Once again, the themes of the 1984 comedy horror film Gremlins aren’t traditionally festive. At the start of the film, a struggling inventor visits an antique store in Chinatown to look for a Christmas present for his son. This leads him to purchase a small creature called a “mogwai.” This decision turns out to have dire consequences for the inventor’s family. Since the plot is undeniably associated with the holiday season, this timeless classic certainly doubles as an offbeat Christmas film!
‘The Nightmare Before Christmas’
Hope you haven’t seen The Nightmare Before Christmas too many times this year already! In our book, this 1993 stop-motion classic is just as much a Christmas movie as it is a Halloween movie. In the film, Jack Skellington, the king of Halloween Town, becomes obsessed with Christmas. Skellington then tries to create Christmas for himself, imploring a cast of spooky characters to help him invade the whimsical Christmas Town.
Everyone knows that the best way to spread Christmas cheer is by singing loud for all to hear. So, if you aren’t singing along with this 2003 Will Ferrell film, then your holidays are seriously missing some cheer. While Millenials and Gen Z were the ones who grew up with this film, Gen X has fully embraced it over the years as well.
Elf follows a human man who was adopted by Santa and his elves as a baby. However, when he finds out that his birth father is still out there in the human world—and that he’s on the naughty list—he embarks on a journey to New York City to help spread the holiday spirit. Actor James Caan (who plays Ferrell’s father in the movie) sadly passed away this July. So, give this movie another watch this season and pay tribute to the late legend.
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