No matter how your family celebrates, the holiday season is the finest season for holding loved ones tight on those cold winter nights. In my family, watching one of our favorite holiday movies became a weeknight tradition, culminating in a movie marathon on Christmas Day. So grab a blanket, a mug of hot cocoa and cozy up with your family to one of these family favorite holiday movies!
Perhaps the ultimate goal for any family favorite holiday movie is to join the pantheon of films that air for 24 hours in a row on TBS. Classics like “A Christmas Story” have enjoyed that status for decades and now this year “Elf” can count itself amongst that rare breed of films. This hilarious and heart-felt story about a misplaced elf searching for his father in New York City is filled with quotable one-lines from start to finish.
Home Alone (1990)
“Home Alone,” the film that launched a young Macaulay Culkin into international stardom, continues a long tradition of zany, slap-stick holiday films that familys love. When 8-year-old Kevin McCallister is accidentally left home alone during a family vacation, he must protect the house at all costs from two moronic, would-be serial burglars. Let the hijinks ensue!
The Polar Express (2004)
This animated feature film is equal parts warm and nostalgic, playing on our deepest feelings for the holiday season. Based on the beloved children’s book by Chris Van Allsburg, a young boy takes a magical train ride to the North Pole where he discovers the true meaning of Christmas. Be sure to add this to your list of family favorite holiday movies.
How the Grinch Stole Christmas (2000)
Yes, there is the animated 1966 adaptation of this classic Dr. Seuss story (plus a more recent 2018 animated feature) but we’re talking about the live-action film starring Jim Carrey. This movie does everything right; from the wonderful depiction of Whoville, an Oscar-worthy performance from the master of slapstick himself and a touching story about spreading love during the holidays.
Rudolph, the Red-Nosed Reindeer (1964)
The true test for any family favorite holiday movie is if it can stand the test of time. Considering this classic stop-motion film is still capturing the hearts of young movie watchers in the 21st century, we think it’s safe to say this film passes the test. This nostalgic fable of Santa’s favorite flying reindeer who saves Christmas is a must-watch this holiday season.