There are some traditions of the holiday season that begin as soon as December rolls around. For our family that means watching as many of our favourite Christmas movies and specials that can be fit into our schedule in the weeks leading up to December 24th.
It doesn’t matter how many times we’ve seen them (too many to count) and it doesn’t matter if we know all the punch lines (and we do), viewing these shows over and over again each year is just as enjoyable as it was the first time. In fact, it’s one of the things that we look forward to with eager anticipation.
My husband’s favourite is Home Alone. I like it too, but I get a greater kick from watching his reaction to the funnier parts of the movie than from actually watching the movie myself. And I know in advance exactly which segments will produce his biggest laughs.
When our children were youngsters, the cartoon versions starring the Grinch and Charlie Brown were big hits. (Oh, who am I kidding? I loved them too and still do.) Animators might produce more updated versions, but the originals are still the best and loved the most.
Today these same adult children of mine tell me that one of their favourite movies of the season is Die Hard. I fail to see how an action thriller fits the genre, but they claim that because the story occurs on Christmas Eve it qualifies as a holiday movie.
I guess it’s all a matter of personal choice. I love The Sound of Music, but I usually find that I am the only one watching it. The fact that I usually sing along with every song might also be the reason for everyone’s hasty departure.
My daughter and I are big fans of Love Actually and The Holiday. Each is a contemporary chick flick with plenty of romance, but I often find the guys checking it out as well.
If there’s one movie that has received the thumbs-up from the entire family, it would have to be National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation starring Chevy Chase as Clark Griswold. Griswold is the over-the-top protagonist of the story who insists on going all out when it comes to observing the Yuletide season. Despite his humourous and clumsy escapades, we can all recognize a bit of ourselves in his attempts to create the perfect Christmas celebrations.
But the ultimate Christmas movie for me is still the adaptation of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol. The story encourages us to observe the spirit of Christmas all year long through acts of kindness and generosity.
As we make our way through December, a busy month filled with shopping, baking, and preparing for Christmas, I can’t think of a better way to enjoy some down time than laughing, crying and reminiscing while watching my favourite movies.