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Jocelyn Hsu / Spoon
Culture > Entertainment

My Top 10 MUST WATCH Christmas Movies

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Millersville chapter.

Christmas is my absolute favorite holiday! My family and I have so many Christmas traditions and even though it is so hectic it’s the best. During the holidays I like to get comfy on the couch, make some hot chocolate, grab some snacks, and watch movies for HOURS on end. Here are some of my most cherished, favorite, and feel-good jolly holiday films. Enjoy and Happy Holidays y’all!! **Note: these are in order from my most favorite/watched during the Christmas season!**

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1. How the grinch stole christmas

The Grinch is the greatest Christmas character, movie, message, etc. and no one can change my mind about it. I have no idea why I love the Grinch so much but anyone who knows me knows I am OBSESSED. “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” is a classic that is funny, cute, has amazing songs, and a great holiday message. Just to be clear, I’m talking about the ORIGINAL Grinch movie; the Jim Carrey version is HILARIOUS but the 1st is the best.

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2. National Lampoons Christmas Vacation

This is 100% the funniest Christmas movie there is, in my opinion. This movie captures the stress, fun, love, anger, wonder, and craziness of the holidays and family. This movie makes me smile and gets me in the spirit and prepares me to see all my different family members over the Christmas WEEK [Christmas is not a day in my life, it’s like a 2 week span of festivities and craziness]. Plus, Eddie makes this movie so ridiculous and the way the in-laws interact make me double over. One of the most iconic Christmas movies ever.

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3. It’s A Wonderful Life

This movie is newer to me. A little backstory: my stepdad Stu is Jewish, so he doesn’t celebrate Christmas due to his religion. However, once he married my mom, he now celebrates Christmas with us as a holiday celebration, just as we celebrate Jewish holidays as well. Even though Stu did not grow us celebrating Christmas he does have a favorite Christmas movie – and it’s this one. Stu showed me this movie about 7 whole years ago. “It’s a Wonderful Life” is about a man who is the kindest and most generous person but gets in a real jam. Then he looses all hope and spirit, only though divine intervention and his love for his town/family does everything turn out okay. This movie is less focused around Christmas as the whole plot but it is such an amazing film and great Christmas movie to watch. It is by far one of my most cherished traditions I get to do with my stepdad. [*All the way up until we watch it he quotes the movie all around the house*]

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4. Love actually

This movie is such a classic. This is my mom’s and my favorite Christmas movie and we try to watch it every year. This movie is such a beautiful meshing of stories and although not all of them are happy, they are all so real. This is a movie that makes me feel warm inside and just in the spirit of Christmas. This one is for you mom <3

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5. Home Alone

Now…I don’t really think I need to explain this one much so I’ll just sum it up for all of you. This movie is a staple of Christmas time and that’s a fact. Just go watch it…like now. “Merry Christmas you filthy animal…and a Happy New Year.”

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6. The Polar Express

I love this movie so much, Tom Hanks makes this movie so special to me. I actually used to HATE this movie and it wasn’t until later on that I rewatched it and learned to love it. Now, I know what everyone is going to say…the kids faces are CREEPY and yes girl they are but it’s okay. I think that the hot chocolate scene alone makes up for the creepy animations. This is a timeless movie that shows everyone the true meaning of Christmas and shows us we are kids at heart.

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7. Rudolph the red-nosed reindeer

I love the messages in this movie, from being who you are, loving yourself, and anti-bullying. I enjoy the music and I just grew up loving this classic. “Silver and Gold” is such a sweet song and the Island of Misfit toys made me appreciate what I had so much as a kid.

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8. Santa Claus is comin’ to town

This movie is one of my favorite because it tells a much more toned down version of Santa and his origin. I like that is it magical but also has real aspects to it. I also just love a story that is different. It’s a great movie if you have never seen it!

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9. Frosty the snowman

What can I say, I couldn’t resist! I love a good Frosty the Snowman moment during Christmas. I feel like this movie is just so full of fun and wonder and shows kids that although Christmas is the best it does end but will come back. I NEVER cry when he melts in the greenhouse….well, almost never. My favorite part of this movie is actually when they try to buy a train ticket to the North Pole and it’s a ridiculous amount of money and the ticket man FREAKS out – classic.

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10. A Charlie Brown Christmas

Now I know some people love this movie more than air or they absolutely hate it. However, I think it is a timeless, sweet, iconic classic story. I don’t really know why I like this movie but I think it has something to do with the sad tree who needs love. Charlie Brown is just a holiday movie staple.

Some Honorable Mentions:

  • The Nightmare Before Christmas
  • The Grinch (Jim Carrey version)
  • A Year Without a Santa Claus
  • A Christmas Carol
  • Home Alone 2: Lost in New York
  • The Santa Clause: original, 2, & 3
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I love Christmas and all the holiday traditions that go along with it. I hope you enjoyed this list of holiday movies and get to watch some! No matter what, how, or where you celebrate, I hope you have a wonderful time and please be safe. Remember, life is short, cherish those you spend this season with <3. Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukka, Happy Kwanzaa, and have a wonderful New Year.

Until Next Time,


Maddie Rose

Maddie Engleman

Millersville '24

Hello! I'm Maddie Engleman; A bit about me: I am a super senior at Millersville University this year, graduating spring '24. This fall is my 7th semester writing for HC which is so cool! I am an Early Childhood Education major and am minoring in General English. I absolutely love kids, writing, reading, cooking/baking, and crafting with my Cricut. I also enjoy spending time around animals! I love being a part of such an empowering platform and get to write pieces that impact people anywhere. HCXO ~ Maddie "Words are our most inexhaustible source of magic." - Albus Dumbledore (J.K. Rowling)