It’s that time of year again! Time to dish out money on lavish gifts for your loved ones and get dragged to boring, holiday parties. Before the festivities officially commence, take some time out of your busy schedule to indulge in some holiday movies that will definitely get you into the Christmas spirit. I have compiled a list of highly-acclaimed, family-oriented holiday movies that everyone should watch this season and, coincidentally, make the perfect holiday gifts under $10.
5. Love Actually
A Christmas-themed British dramedy that follows ten different stories whose lives are all intertwined. The film is comprised of a British ensemble cast that includes Hugh Grant, Keira Knightley, Liam Neeson and Andrew Lincoln. The film’s major focus and theme is love of all kinds (unrequited, family, romantic, etc). With scenes of grand gestures and heart-breaking moments, this Christmas movie will leave you wishing you lived in England along with all the other characters.
4. The Santa Clause
‘The Santa Clause’ begins with Scott Calvin (Tim Allen), an advertising executive for a Chicago toy company, enjoying Christmas Eve with his son, Charlie. After Santa Clause falls off the roof, Scott begins to inexplicably gain a massive amount of weight, grows a beard that cannot be shaved off and his hair turns white. Despite all of his efforts to avoid the transformation, Scott becomes Santa Clause and eventually warms up to the idea. Scott tries to convince his ex-wife and new husband that Santa does exist. ‘The Santa Clause’ will bring back childhood memories and make you believe in St. Nick once again.
One of the funniest movies you’ll ever see! Elf stars Will Ferrell and Zooey Deschanel as Buddy and Jovie. Buddy (Will Ferrell) believes to be an elf until he is told he is actually human. Buddy embarks on an adventure to find his father Walter (James Caan) in New York and has several setbacks along the way. Walter is skeptical when he first meets him. Buddy faces more tribulations when his child-like behavior causes issues for everyone around him. He flees from his father and runs into Santa whose sleigh has crashed in Central Park. Buddy and Jovie are able to attract a huge crowd who all begin to sing ‘Santa Claus is Coming to Town’ and everyone’s Christmas spirit reignites Santa’s sleigh. Full of laughs and classic Christmas songs, ‘Elf’ makes the perfect holiday movie.
2. Home Alone 2
‘Home Alone 2’ exemplifies the perfect Christmas film with scenes in Rockefeller Center, Duncan’s Toy Chest, Central Park, Carnegie Hall and Times Square. ‘Home Alone 2’ stars Macaulay Culkin reprising his role of Kevin McCallister along with Joe Pesci and Daniel Stern as the ‘Wet Bandits’. Once again, Kevin’s parents wake up late for their flight and rush to get to the airport. Kevin gets left behind again and he mistakenly takes a New York flight. Kevin’s ingenuity allows him to get out of sticky situations but he continuously runs into the ‘wet bandits’ who have escaped from prison. He sets up his trademark booby traps to get away from the bandits. Kevin goes to the Rockefeller Center to make a wish at the tree and he is reunited with his mother who knew that Kevin’s love of Christmas trees would lead him there. ‘Home Alone 2’ is a heart-warming comedy that brings out the kid in all of us.
1. It’s A Wonderful Life
‘It’s A Wonderful Life’ is a holiday classic directed by Frank Capra. The film stars James Stewart and Donna Reed who play George Bailey and Mary Bailey. The movie follows the life of George Bailey; a man who has always sacrificed everything for others. When George is fed up with everything in his life, he decides that he wants to commit suicide on Christmas Eve. Clarence, his guardian angel, saves him and shows him what life would be like without him for the people in his life. George has an epiphany and realizes that he has made an impact on everyone he has ever encountered. He wishes to be alive once more and is grateful for his wonderful life. ‘It’s A Wonderful Life’ has become a traditional film to watch during the holidays and will remind you of what Christmas is truly about.
As we await the ‘prophesied’ apocalypse, cozy up to a marshmallow hot-chocolate while watching one of these Christmas classics. Happy Holidays everyone!
*All of the movies mentioned are available at Wal-Mart, Target or Bed, Bath & Beyond for under $10.