Sunday, 11 December 2016

My Top 10 Christmas Films

Happy December! Congrats on making it through the dreary post-summer bleakness of September & the surprisingly arctic October & November. To be honest, Christmas for me began as soon as we took down the Halloween decorations, but i've been modestly holding back my festive excitement until December broke... Well, sort of. I am writing this November 31st!
Needless to say, I love Christmas and there's little I love more than a Friday night in with my mam, a box of celebrations (or heroes but NEVER quality street) and an Xmas classic. 
Here are some of my faves (in no particular order).

1) Love Actually
I actually (haha) only watched this for the first time last Xmas day after my mam slated it for being boring and I LOVED IT. It's a romantic, heart warming, laugh out loud funny Christmas spectacular, one of those films that would be decent anyway but is twice as good because is set at CHRISTMAS! It's British which I like as it feels more down to earth and real, and has an insane star studded cast. Like really. Not joking. I'm rubbish with celebrities but every 2 second you find yourself going 'OMG I love him, what was he in?'... We're talking Bill Nighy, Kiera Nightly, Colin Firth, Alan Rickman, Martin Freeman, Emma Thompson, Hugh Grant, Liam Neeson, Rowan Atkinson, Joanna Page, the adorable little boy from Nanny Mcphee, Tiffany off Eastenders and SO many more.

2) The Santa Clause
I first watching this about 7 years ago in school and it is sooo good. I haven't heard too much about this film from other people, but I just love it (even if it does have 2 pretty shite sequels)! 
It follows Tim Allen as a pretty useless dad who, when looking after his adorbs son Charlie one Christmas Eve, accidentally scares Santa who in turn falls of their roof and... Dies? Wow. This film is a lot darker than I remember...
It's actually really funny and super Christmassy. Tim Allen has to then BE Santa Claus to replace the guy he sort of accidentally killed. The plot sounds lame and i'm normally not a fan of any film that messes with the traditional idealism of how Santa does his thing by making it too modern but it's actually so good an I highly recommend it to anyone.

3) White Christmas
We're into the classics now. If you're in the market for something a bit more old fashioned than this is IT. Don't be put off by it being a bit older though, this 1954 classic features original king of Xmas. Bing Crosby and his mates singing it up in an inn in Vermont. It's romantic and has a classic soundtrack that will really get you into the Christmas spirit. It features 2 American, world war 2 soldiers and 2 performing sisters and a coincidentally shared Christmas. Brilliant and heart warming.

4) Miracle on 34th Street
Now, when I say Miracle on 34th Street, I mean the 1947 ORIGINAL, not the crappy 90's remake, DO NOT BE FOOLED. This may be up there as one of my faves. This magical classic takes place in New York and was clearly the modern Christmas tale of the time as it features a man working as Santa Clause in a Macy's department store, only to claim that he is in fact father Christmas himself. The tale follows him his relationship with event director of Macy's, Doris (NOT romantic relationship, it's not that kind of film) and her young daughter Susan who doesn't believe in Santa. This really is so heart warming and it's amazing despite being in black and white. PLEASE don't judge the film based on that because you soon forget and it becomes one of the greatest Xmas films you've ever seen. Absolutely magical yet somehow totally radical.

5) Nativity!
Featuring the lovely Martin Freeman, Nativity! is what i'd describe as warm and cozy. If you went to primary school in 90's or 00's in the UK, this film will 100% give you complete nostalgia. The decorated classrooms, the groups of friends and the indescribable excitement about a primary school nativity show will all come whizzing back to you, and the slightly ridiculous plot will seem a distant memory. It's funny and light hearted. Love it.
Warning: the sequel's only saving grace is David Tennant, but the follow sequels really are a shower of shit, like not joking so just leave it at the one film.

6) The Holiday
Another romantic escapism, this film jumps you to and from LA and Surrey at Christmas Time. Iris (Kate Winslet) and Amanda (Cameron Diaz - she's actually okay in this) are both heart broken about a week before Christmas and, needing a getaway, do a house swap over the festive period. You get a strange yet marvellous concoction of American cliché and British love story, giving women the power to say FUCK OFF to the same bastards that have treated us so badly all year, and HELLO to our new lives waiting on the other side of the world. It's cliché but its cute, and is again v funny.

7) Home Alone
Surely everyone's seen this one, right? Meet Kevin. Drowned under a massive family of dickheads, all this little boy wants is a Christmas to himself. So, when the whole family are running late and rush off to their flight on Xmas day, Kevin is left home alone. It's a slapstick comedy to die for and full of Christmas cheer, and guess what... The sequel's actually really decent! Unheard of.

8) Elf
Another one everyone must have seen! Will Ferrell brings a funny, modern Christmas film set in a department store (sound familiar?). Actually, the film is covered with Miracle on 34th Street references, but that's by the by. This is actually an amazing film and I'm pretty sure is the highest grossing Xmas film of all time. Probably hated by hipsters because it's overplayed so much on TV, Elf brings a heart warming, American story of a human elf seeking his Dad in New York and finding love along the way. I've never been the biggest Will Ferrell fan (don't hate him, just don't love him) but he does this film proud and for some reason is another movie that just gives me total nostalgia. 

9) Arthur Christmas
This is another fairly new addition; I think I watched this 2 years ago. I wasn't expecting much, but I actually really like it! It's an animation about the whole Clause family, including hapless and useless grandson Arthur and how he proves himself one Christmas. I was surprised how much I enjoyed it seeing as it is one of those more modern Xmas films that's trying to bring Christmas eve into the 21st century with big spaceships and stuff. Despite all that, it's really enjoyable and describes the whole Santa, Christmas eve process in a way that I for sure would have thought about as I was trying to sleep if it had been around when I was a youngster. Good one for kids, but defo wouldn't rule it out for an adult. 

10) The Muppet Christmas Carol
Okay, so I think this might be my fave Christmas film of all time! I'm not going to go into the story of A Christmas Carol because we've all heard and been bored ridged with a million times after remake after remake, but this film is brilliant. Half humans, half muppets, the cast perform out the story alongside some absolute belters of songs. I don't mind the premise of the original story, but the Muppets bring a subtle comedy factor through 2 muppet storytellers the whole way through and, in my opinion, my the story better! I can't even count how many times i've seen it, all I know is when I first watched it as a 10 year old, I was pretty mesmerised. Again, the 'running over Christmas eve' style of the story gives me excited Xmas jitters, and the movie feels just as magical as the first time I ever saw it. I truly love this film, and I urge ANYONE to see it who hasn't already.

So, those are my absolute, bestest, most favourite Christmas films of all time. I hope this has inspired someone to try something new or relive an old classic.