Cinque cose belle - La tua guida alla bellezza

Every year the Christmas tradition requires many rituals. There are those who make the tree and those who make the crib. Who eats the panettone and who the pandoro. Who goes to the cinema and who enjoys a good movie on television. If you belong to the latter category, you will have formed your own catalog of Christmas films over the years. A catalog that will certainly contain some Disney classics, some black and white films and some films replicated perhaps a thousand times by Mediaset networks. But what are the best Christmas movies ever?

In fact, if you don’t know which movie to rent on streaming services, below we have decided to provide you with a selection of the best Christmas movies ever produced.


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As you will see, we have tried to be balanced, and to satisfy everyone’s tastes, from children to adults, from traditionalists to innovators. And if you have any other ideas, please report them in the comments.

1. Life is wonderful

Good feelings signed by Frank Capra

Let’s start, in chronological order, from the classic of the classics. It cannot be Christmas, in fact, if some television channel is not broadcasting The Life is BeautifulFrank Capra’s masterpiece played by James Stewart.

Made in 1946, a few months after the end of the Second World War, the film continues to be broadcast on Christmas Eve by dozens of broadcasters, often achieving excellent ratings.

In Great Britain, on the other hand, a poll has elected it the favorite Christmas film by families, while many people (even famous ones) have confessed to having given up on the idea of ​​committing suicide after watching the film.


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The story – taken from a short story by Philip Van Doren Stern – is in fact about despair and good feelings. The protagonist is George Bailey, a good man who has always given up on his dreams in order to meet the needs of those around him.

But when his uncle loses a large sum that risks bankrupting his company, he decides to end it. On the bridge he is about to throw himself from, however, he meets a second-class angel, Clarence, who shows him what the world would have been like if he had never been born. This convinces him to return to his family and, above all, that “life is wonderful”.

2. An armchair for two

The classic Christmas movie (at least in Italy)

There are many films that take place during the Christmas holidays, or that focus on good feelings. Among those we have reluctantly excluded, they can be cited for example Miracle on 34th street (both in the 1947 and 1994 versions), the beautiful – but little known to us – A Christmas Story And The Grinch.

Few, however, know how to evoke the same sensations as in the Italian public An armchair for two, a film in itself not extraordinary. For several years now, Mediaset has been airing this film during the holidays, and therefore it is automatic, when you see its advertising on TV, to think that Christmas is approaching.

The film is directed by John Landis, a specialist in comedy and horror films. In fact, he is masterpieces such as Animal House, The Blues Brothers And An American werewolf in London. But in the film the lion’s share goes to the two protagonists, who grew up on the stage of Saturday Night Live: Dan Aykroyd and Eddie Murphy.

The two, in the story, respectively play a wealthy broker and a beggar, whose roles are reversed due to a perverse bet by two brothers. Once they learn of the deception, however, they manage to take their revenge.

3. Mom, I missed the plane

When you go on vacation too quickly

During the Christmas holidays, often – Covid aside – you leave your home and go, towards the mountains or relatives. And the house can therefore become an easy target for bad guys. But if someone smart enough stays on guard …

This is the starting point of a film that you will surely have recognized: Mom I missed the planegreat commercial success of the 1990 season. The film was written and produced by John Hughes (yes, that of Breakfast Club) and directed by Chris Columbus (yes, the one from the first two Harry Potter films), and featured seasoned actors like Joe Pesci starring alongside child prodigy Macauley Culkin.

The young actor, who was 10 at the time, played a child who was forgotten at home by his parents leaving for a vacation, but he managed very well. The assaults of two thieves were in fact rejected from time to time thanks to finding more and more imaginative.

The effects were deeply comical and had an immediate hold on both the American and European audiences. Not surprisingly, the film broke all records, becoming at the time the highest-grossing comedy in the history of cinema. Against a budget of 18 million dollars and non-prominent actors, it grossed more than 476 million.

4. Nightmare Before Christmas

The dark Christmas tale

If good feelings bore you and you are looking for a more original Christmas, Nightmare Before Christmas is probably the movie for you. Made in 1993 by Henry Selick starting from an idea by Tim Burton – who is also a producer -, the film uses stop-motion animation to tell an unusual story, in which the dark elements take precedence over the loving ones.

Jack Skellington is in fact the king of the Halloween country, but the role is tight. Bored with the usual preparations and that one party, he decides to venture elsewhere, and ends up in the land of Christmas. There he discovers the beauty of that anniversary and tries to replicate it in his own world, but with disheartening results.

The story had already been outlined years earlier by Burton, who had made it into a sort of illustrated fable. When his directorial career took off, following the successes of Edward scissor hands And Batmanhe therefore thought of recovering the old idea and putting it on stage.

The result – despite the hesitation of the financiers – was excellent, and still shines today, after many years. When released in theaters the film did well, but it was about ten years later, with the arrival of DVD, that it became a phenomenon of costume, giving way to clothing lines, merchandising and other derivative products.

5. Elf – An elf named Buddy

A helper of Santa Claus in New York

Various Christmas-themed comedies have been produced in Hollywood over the past twenty years. Typically they feature children or adults who have forgotten the magic of Christmas, Santa Claus or his helpers, sinister capitalists and good fathers with a tender heart.

Most of the time, these are mediocre and predictable products; but sometimes some of these films emerge from the pile. This is, in our opinion, the case with Elf – An elf named Buddya little-known but very successful film in the United States directed in 2003 by Jon Favreau (who later worked on, among other things, Iron Man).

The story is that of an orphan who, due to a series of circumstances, is raised by Santa’s elves. When he, now grown up, realizes that he is a human, he decides to return to the world to go in search of his biological father, who lives in New York.

However, his elf clothes and strange behavior will generate a whole series of comic situations at times hilarious. In addition to the well thought-out script, the film is based on the acting skills of its actors.


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The protagonist is a Will Ferrell who has rarely been so well suited to the part, but James Caan and Zooey Deschanel also leave a good impression around him.

Another 25 Christmas films, in addition to the 5 already reported

It must also be said, in reality, that Christmas films are never enough. And so five titles, however beautiful, may not satisfy all your cravings and desires. Below, therefore, we have gathered another thirty: the first are the most beautiful in our opinion. Enjoy them.

– A Charlie Brown Christmas (1965)
– Klaus – Secrets of Christmas (2019)
– Mickey’s Christmas Carol (1983)
– The miracle of the 34th street (1947)
– Edward Scissorhands (1990)
– Party at the Muppet House (1992)
– White Christmas (1954)
– An Explosive Christmas (1989)
– Love Actually (2003)
– The tavern of happiness (1942)
– The 5 legends (2012)
– Santa’s son (2011)
– Someone Save Christmas (2018)
– SOS ghosts (1988)
– Bastard Santa (2013)
– Love Doesn’t Go on Vacation (2006)
– The Family Man (2000)
– A Christmas Carol (2009)
– Polar Express (2004)
– Santa Clause (1994)
– Miracle on 34th Street (1994)
– Jingle Jangle – A Christmas Adventure (2020)
– High for the holidays! (2015)
– The Grinch (2018)
– The Grinch (2000)

And you, which Christmas movie do you prefer?

Did we forget something? Report other Christmas movies in the comments.

#Christmas #Movies #Beautiful

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