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5 Classic Christmas Movies That Get Us in the Spirit of the Holidays

Mind candy to watch before tucking in for sleep every night from now until Christmas

Sleigh bells ringing in your world? We know they are in ours. Everywhere we look are the sights and sounds of our favorite time of year. The sparkling lights, colorful decorations, decadent treats, festive music. And yes, of course, the movies, the ones we love snuggling up with our family, a big bowl of popcorn and an entire evening to spend together. And afterward, the sugar plums fairies in our dreams as we settle down for a long winter’s nap.

Sorry, couldn’t resist.

Christmas holidays are all about family traditions, which for many of us, includes a long list of movies in the evening and a delish holiday breakfast the next day. Everyone’s got a go-to movie that they watch every single season – without fail. The Restonic Dream Team is no different so we asked around and discovered that our crowd loves a whole bunch of oldies and goodies. We even found someone who thinks he sleeps like the Grinch – but he just needs coffee and then he’s all holly jolly again.

Our recommendation? Light the fire, pop some popcorn and warm the hot chocolate, and cozy up to these 5 Classic films that we think everyone should watch at least once.

In case you’re looking for something little more newfangled, scroll down for our Top 11 list of modern classics too.

It’s a Wonderful Life

Starring: James Steward and Henry Travers

After George Bailey wishes he’d never been born, an angel is sent to earth to make George’s wish come true. During his journey he realizes how many lives he’s impacted and how different the world would be without him.

Why we love it: Standing the test of time, this movie has brilliant performances and an uplifting message. And it always leads to happy dreams of our lives and the people we love.

White Christmas

Starring: Bing Crosby, Danny Kay, Dean Jaggers, Rosemary Clooney, and Vera Ellen

Two goofy singers join a sister act to perform a Christmas show in rural Vermont. They run into General Waverly, who commanded the boys in World War 2. He’s having financial difficulties at his country inn, so to help him, the foursome plan a yuletide musical extravaganza. The goal? Make a Christmas miracle happen and save the inn.

Why we love it: Singing, dancing, and witty banter. So much fun that always sends us to bed happy.

A Christmas Carol

Starring: Reginald Owen, Gene Lockhart, Kathleen Lockhard, Terry Kilburn, Barry MacKay 

While it’s been remade by almost every moviemaker in Hollywood, we’re fans of the original 1938 adaptation of Charles Dickens’ novella. We don’t have to tell you what happens when crotchety Christmas hater Ebenezer Scrooge gets schooled on the error of his ways after being visited by the four spirits of Christmas.

Why we love it: Who doesn’t like to see a bad guy see the light? That’s what holiday spirit is all about and it always leads to dreams of what’s really important to us the ones we love.

Miracle on 34th Street

Starring: Edmund Gwenn

When an old man going by the name of Kris Kringle fills in for an intoxicated Santa at the Macy’s annual Thanksgiving parade, he’s such a hit that they bring him to make regular appearances at the main Macy’s store in Midtown Manhattan. After Kringle claims that he’s actually the real Santa Claus, surprising everyone around him, he’s taken to court to determine his authenticity and mental health.

Why we love it: It’s a true Christmas classic, that’s why. Also, don’t we all dream that there really is a Santa Claus?

A Charlie Brown Christmas

It’s Christmastime and amidst the twinkling lights and sparkling decorations, Charlie Brown has the yuletide blues. Of course, Lucy is full of advice, and this time she tells Charlie Brown that he should direct the Christmas play. After Charlie lugs in a sorry looking Christmas tree to take center stage during the show, the gang makes fun of him but once holiday magic takes over, they all remember the true meaning of Christmas.

Why we love it: With the season being so busy, we can all use a little reminder to slow down and focus on the people in our lives rather than the stuff in stores. And that always leads to dreaming up new ways to make Christmas more about love.

If you’re into more modern classics, these 11 movies are always a big hit

  • Elf
  • National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation
  • Bad Santa
  • Home Alone
  • The Grinch Stole Christmas
  • Love, Actually
  • Serendipity
  • Polar Express
  • The Family Stone
  • Scrooged
  • A Christmas Story


Is your family’s fave on our list? We’d love to hear what you’ll be watching this holiday season.

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