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25 Essential Movies for the Holiday Season

Don’t know what to watch for your family movie night or night in with friends during the holidays? Look no further! From classics to modern favorites to under the radar, this list is your guide to the most essential movies to watch this holiday season!

1. Elf

Some people’s favorite, others can’t stand it. Nevertheless it has become a Christmas classic!2. Home Alone (1 and 2, but not 3, 4 or 5)

Young Macaulay Culkin when he was cute and hilarious one-liners? Yes please!3. Love Actually

All your favorite British (and American) actors rolled into one great and sappy movie!4. A Christmas Carol

Really any version is good, but A Muppet’s Christmas Carol may be the best…5. The Nightmare before Christmas

Some say this one is for Halloween, some say Christmas…but why not both??6. A Christmas Story

This one is absolutely iconic…if you’ve never seen it, don’t worry it’s on TV for 24 hours straight on Christmas.7. The Santa Clause (1, 2, 3)

Let’s be honest the first one is definitely Tim Allen’s best movie.8. National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation

A movie to remind us of how crazy it can be to spend the holidays with family.9. A Charlie Brown Christmas

The Charlie Brown Christmas tree…enough said.10. The Polar Express

If you don’t believe in Santa, you will after this movie.11. How the Grinch Stole Christmas

The cartoon definitely trumps the live action movie, but both are still good.12. It’s a Wonderful Life

This one is an absolute classic that could bring you to tears.13. The Holiday

This one tends to go under the radar, but definitely a good one.14. The Family Stone

Also a super underrated movie, but its all-star cast makes it amazing (spoiler: grab some tissues).15. Miracle on 34th Street (not the remake)

An oldie but a goodie for sure! The older one is so much better than the new one…16. Christmas with the Kranks

I know we said Tim Allen was the best in The Santa Clause, but this one is a close second.17. Four Christmases

Reese Witherspoon and Vince Vaughn in a Christmas movie…heck yeah!18. Jack Frost

This movie also tends to be forgotten, but is worth the watch!19. Eloise at Christmastime

Maybe not the most quality of movies, but it brings a favorite childhood book to life!20. Fred Claus

Vince Vaughn round 2!

21. Jingle All the Way

This was Arnold Schwarzenegger in his prime.22. White Christmas

A classic from way back in 1954!23. Frosty the Snowman, Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer, etc.

Make sure you take time to watch all of the best cartoons featuring characters like Frosty, Rudolph, Heat/Snow Meiser, and more!24. Scrooged

This one is a fun take on the classic A Christmas Carol featuring Bill Murray.25. Eight Crazy Nights

Not super into Christmas centered movies? This one focuses more on Hanukkah and is definitely one to watch!

Francesca is a senior at Connecticut College double majoring in Biology and Italian. She is from Bethany, CT and is a huge Friends and Greys Anatomy enthusiast!
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