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Top 10 Classic Christmas Movies: Best of WatchMojo

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Script written by Tiffany Ezuma It’s the most wonderful time of the year! In this video, WatchMojo.com counts down our picks for the top 10 Christmas movies. Since we’ve already ranked our picks for the Top 10 Funniest Christmas Movies, we’ve decided to make a list of the classics: those movies that have the most holiday spirit and that we love to watch year after year, whether they crack us up or not. We’ve also excluded TV specials, since we’ve already covered those. Now on with the Christmas cheer! Special thanks to our users Miroljub Milisavljevic, mezipe64, MyMom321, Andrew A. Dennison, Al Bebak, Callum Prentice, AvrilLavigneandAFI, Andrew A. Dennison, Shawn Frary, http://www.youtube.c, tonithedon, thomaszeblob and clarkwayne for submitting the idea on our Suggestions Page at WatchMojo.comsuggest
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Top 10 Classic Christmas Movies


It’s the most wonderful time of the year! Welcome to WatchMojo.com and today we’re counting down our picks for the top 10 Christmas movies.

Since we’ve already ranked our picks for the Top 10 Funniest Christmas Movies, we’ve decided to make a list of the classics: those movies that have the most holiday spirit and that we love to watch year after year, whether they crack us up or not. We’ve also excluded TV specials, since we’ve already covered those. Now on with the Christmas cheer!

#10: “Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas” (2000)

The live-action film adaptation of this Dr. Seuss classic is just as endearing as the book – using all the existing rhymes and adding to the Grinch’s backstory. With his tiniest of hearts, the Grinch is trying to steal Christmas from all the expectant Whos down in Whoville. But a chance encounter with Cindy Lou Who changes everything, when she makes it her Christmas mission to change his heart and his mind.

#9: “The Santa Clause” (1994)

Even if you’re too old for Santa, this movie recaptures the wonder you felt about him as a child. After Scott Calvin knocks Santa off the roof on Christmas Eve, he must deliver the rest of the presents or risk ruining Christmas. Scott thinks it’s a one-time gig, but soon learns he must become the new Santa. But first he must convince his family that he’s the real deal. Impossible? Not for Santa!

#8: “Scrooged” (1988)

Based on Charles Dickens’ classic novel “A Christmas Carol,” this film makes Ebenezer a TV exec who’s got no time for his employees or the woman he once loved. Unlike the earlier adaptations, this version strikes the balance between humor and sentiment, with Bill Murray bringing all the funny. It’s a great reminder of the true holiday spirit of goodwill towards all. And no version of “A Christmas Carol” would be complete without a certain iconic quote!

#7: “Elf” (2003)

What’s more ridiculous than casting as 6’3” man as one of Santa’s elves? Pretty much, nothing. An instant classic, “Elf” tells the story of Buddy, a North Pole elf who finds out he’s actually a human. With his newfound identity, Buddy goes on a search for his biological parents. Hilariously funny but also touching, “Elf” was a major box office success, earning more than six times its budget and bringing the Christmas spirit to the masses.

#6: “Home Alone” (1990)

Every kid’s dream is for no adult supervision, which is exactly what happens to eight-year-old Kevin McCallister. After being accidentally forgotten by his family when they leave for Christmas vacation, Kevin faces burglars trying to break into his home. With some ingenious booby-traps and more than a little moxy, he thwarts their attempts and eventually reunites with his family, prompting a heartwarming ending that helped make this one of the highest earning comedies ever.

#5: “National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation” (1989)

National Lampoon was already a great franchise, but John Hughes made it even better by writing this Christmas classic. In another adventure with the Griswold family, we see Clark trying – and failing – to create the best traditional Christmas for his family. However, as always, nothing goes his way. But Clark finds that it isn’t how they celebrate the holiday that’s important but that the family spends it together.

#4: “Miracle on 34th Street” (1947)

Every good department store Santa must strive to be like Kris Kringle, the Santa-in-question in this film. After seeing Kringle in Macy’s, little Susan Walker believes that he’s really Santa Claus. Her hunch makes the authorities question him and he’s arrested. After that, he must sway the judge and jury into believing he is Old Saint Nick. This movie reminds us every year that, during the holidays, anything is possible when you truly believe!

#3: “A Christmas Carol” (1938)

Dickens’ classic has had countless re-telling’s but this 1938 version is one of the best adaptations of the source material, give or take some of the story’s grimmer aspects. Ebenezer Scrooge is ever the miser; but as the three Christmas Ghosts visit him, he realizes the error of his ways. On Christmas morning, he awakens a changed man full of holiday cheer and goodwill, proving any ol’ curmudgeon can change!

#2: “A Christmas Story” (1983)

Part coming-of-age story, part Christmas flick, this holiday tale reminds us all of our awkward family gatherings as a kid. All nine-year-old Ralphie wants for Christmas is a BB gun, but he’s constantly told he’ll “shoot his eye out!” The poor kid can’t seem to catch a break, but no matter how zany his family gets it’s easy to see the love between them. A modern classic, his movie is constantly on TV during the holiday season – making it a must-watch.

Before we unveil our number one pick, here are a few honorable mentions:
- “The Muppet Christmas Carol” (1992)
- “The Nightmare Before Christmas” (1993)
- “Love Actually” (2003)
- “Ernest Saves Christmas” (1988)

#1: “It’s a Wonderful Life” (1946)

The film begins with the dark premise of George Bailey considering suicide on Christmas Eve. But before he can go through with it, a second-class angel comes down to Earth to show him how different the world would be if he’d never existed. The backdrop of Christmas makes the perfect setting for redemption and second chances, which is a great message to remember at the holidays.

Do you agree with our list? What’s the Christmas movie that gets you in the holiday spirit? Be sure to check out our Top 10 Funniest Christmas Movies, and subscribe to WatchMojo.com for more cheer-inducing top 10s published every day.
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