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This Chick’s Flicks: Christmas Chick Flicks

Love Actually image: © 2003 Universal Studios.  ||  This Chick’s Flicks logo: © 2012 Kristal Bailey.

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Mom’s 5 Favorite Holiday Movies

by Barbara Eskin

The criteria for “best holiday movies” begins and ends with a single fact: it must make me cry at least once. If it gets me sobbing, it goes to the top of the list.

Counting down from #5, my favorite holiday movies are…

5. Home for the Holidays (1995)
PG-13, 103 min., Comedy/Drama/Romance

© 1995 Paramount Pictures
© 1995 Paramount Pictures

Holly Hunter, Anne Bancroft, Robert Downey Jr., Charles Durning,
Dylan McDermott, Steve Guttenberg, Cynthia Stevenson

The only really dark movie in the bunch, this is a real family dramedy. It has all the stereotypes and a great cast. Did I cry? Only on the inside—we have all lived through supposed happy occasions that turned dark and revealed all the dysfunctions we live with all year.

» Amazon «
(DVD)

4. Die Hard 2: Die Harder (1990)
R, 124 min., Action/Crime/Thriller

© 1990 Twentieth Century Fox
© 1990 Twentieth Century Fox

Bruce Willis, Bonnie Bedelia, William Atherton, Reginald VelJohnson, Dennis Franz

The reunion between Detective John McClane (Bruce Willis) and his wife (Bonnie Bedelia), after unbelievable heroics so that his children would not lose their mother on Christmas and he would not lose his wife, is the kind of stuff we married ladies can only fantasize about.

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(Blu-ray/DVD/Instant)

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» iTunes «
(Buy)

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3. White Christmas (1954)
Approved, 120 min., Comedy/Musical/Romance

© 1954 Paramount HE
© 1954 Paramount HE

Bing Crosby, Danny Kaye, Rosemary Clooney, Vera-Ellen

The music alone can bring tears to my eyes. A totally delicious score that includes “White Christmas” (who can resist Bing Crosby crooning it) and the wonderful “Sisters,” performed by Rosemary Clooney and Vera-Ellen. It is such a great family story, and the bond between the two sisters—one unwilling to leave the other behind—touches the heart of anyone who has a sister.
The best part? The happy ending.

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(Blu-ray/DVD/Instant)

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(Buy)

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» Netflix «
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2. The Christmas Shoes (2002)
TV Movie, 100 min., Drama

© 2006
© 2006

Rob Lowe, Kimberly Williams-Paisley, Max Morrow

The biggest weeper of the bunch, it has all the right elements—an adorable boy losing his mother at Christmas, who wants only one thing: to give her a very special gift to wear to heaven. Enter Rob Lowe, detached from his family, who helps the boy purchase the shoes. Years later he runs into the boy at the cemetery—the boy has become a doctor, leading to the sequel, The Christmas Blessing (2005).

» Amazon «
(Blu-ray/DVD)

1. Home Alone 2: Lost in New York (1992)
PG, 120 min., Adventure/Comedy/Crime

© 1992 Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation
© 1992 Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation

Macaulay Culkin, Joe Pesci, Daniel Stern, Catherine O’Hara, John Heard,
Tim Curry, Brenda Fricker, Rob Schneider, Eddie Bracken

A single iconic holiday moment when mom finds child at the biggest Christmas tree and they reunite. I get weepy just writing about it. One of the greatest holiday images of the strength of the bond between mother and child, and a total affirmation of the lengths parents will go to ensure the safety of their children. Great family movie; great wet-tissue movie.

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» iTunes «
(Buy/Rent)

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Want more Christmas flicks?
Check out Casey Carroll’s 12 Days of Christmas Countdown!

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Check out Sarah’s Author Archive for her other Reviews, Interviews and News posts,
and her feature column, This Chick’s Flicks, for pieces on the chick flicks of now and then.

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The Author

Sarah Katz

Sarah Katz

Born-and-bred New Yorker. Lifelong film & TV lover—from chick flicks, rom-coms, rom-droms, rom-drams, and tweentertainment, to Shakespeare, period pieces, James Bond, fairy tales, and mafia movies.