A Christmas Story
It’s no mystery why A Christmas Story is played on cable 24/7 on Christmas Day. It’s one of, if not the best Christmas movie ever made, and perfect for kids. The movie centers around the life of a small-town American boy, Ralphie, and his quest for the ultimate Christmas gift: a Red Ryder air rifle. Along his journey he faces neighborhood bullies, masked marauders, Chinese turkey, and the incessant words of disapproving adults: “You’ll shoot your eye out kid!” While I’m sure more kids are begging for Guitar Hero than BB guns this year, the heart of this story still rings true.
Miracle on 34th Street
Most kids have sat on the lap of a shopping mall Santa before, but how many can say they got to whisper their holiday wishes to the real deal? Such is the case in A Miracle on 34th Street. The real Santa, Kris Kringle, gets a job playing himself at a major department store. When his authenticity is questioned and he winds up on trial, children and adults all around the world rally to support him. Any kid who believes in the joy that is Santa Claus will rally around this movie as well.
Christmas is a time for family to come together…and fall apart. Kids want to play with their new toys on Christmas, not have to share with annoying cousins and get kisses from equally annoying aunts. Kevin Mcallister gets his way in Home Alone. The youngest child of a wealthy family in the suburbs of Chicago, Kevin wishes for his family to disappear on Christmas Eve. Thanks to a series of unfortunate events, his wish is granted and his days are full of BB guns, junk food and movies. All is well until a couple crooks come to rob his house and he has to fight them off the way only a kid could, with toys and treeforts a plenty.
Frosty The Snowman
If only every kid knew that all you needed for a snowman to come to life was a magic hat! I found it out by watching the 1960s animated short, Frosty the Snowman. In it, Little Karen and her friends find a jolly living snowman and name him Frosty. When a conniving magician comes for his life-giving hat, Frosty and Karen hop a train to escape and end up out in the wilderness. It’s a story of imagination and friendship with a great song I’m sure every kid already knows.
Rudolph The Red Nosed Reindeer
Growing up can be rough. There’s name calling, getting cast out for not looking like everyone else, and the constant threat of abominable snowmen. Wait, everything but the last part, that is for everyone but Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer. This Christmas staple, which uses beautiful stop-motion animation, follows the story of Rudolph, a red-schnozzed misfit who runs away from home an outcast only to return and save Christmas for everyone. Playful and full of memorable songs, Rudolph teaches a great lesson: that one can have shortcomings and still shine (in Rudolph’s case literally.)
How The Grinch Stole Christmas
Christmas comes right on time every year and kids can always expect there to be stockings hanging from the chimney, big dinners, and presents under the tree. Such is not the case for the Whos in Whoville in How The Grinch Stole Christmas, an animated short from the 60s based on Dr. Seuss’s classic book and voiced by the actually scary Boris Karloff. The Grinch, who lives a recluse on Mount Crumpit, hates all things Christmas and sets it upon himself to shred any evidence of its existence, by strealing all the toys, christmas trees, and even the last can of Whohash (you ask me) in town. Full of great singalongs, a cute little dog, and literal “heart,” today’s kids will be sure to enjoy what others have loved for over 40 years.
A Charlie Brown Christmas
Who better to explain the true meaning of Christmas than a kid who carries around a blue blankie? In A Charlie Brown Christmas, our favorite neighborhood bald kid ponders the big questions while coping with a poorly directed holiday concert, a greedy little sister, and aluminum (yes, aluminum) Christmas trees. Linus comes to the aid of Charlie who, inspired, helps spruce up a poor neglected Christmas tree. The scene with the kids catching snow on their tongues is cute enough to warrant this a classic.
The Santa Clause
Who is Santa Claus? An immortal saint from ancient times or your neighbor’s dad? The Santa Clause, stars then mega-famous Home Improvement star Tim Allen as ad exec Scott Calvin who ends up accidentally offing the real Santa. He is then bounded (in magical elf law) to don the suit and become the big guy himself. His son Charlie knows he’s the real deal, but the rest of town doesn’t and Scott must overcome the law and the doubts of those who stopped believing long ago. What kid wouldn’t want Santa as their dad? Best presents ever!
Santa Claus is Comin’ To Town
It’s Santa Claus’s job to deliver toys to children all around the world. Maybe he loves it so much because he wasn’t born a old jolly fat man, but was once a child himself. Santa Claus is Comin’ To Town tells the story of of how Santa Claus came to be, starting as a little baby namd Kris Kringle. Kris vows to deliver toys to the children of Sombertown and is outlawed by ruthless mayor Burgermeister Meisterburger, only to morph into the big bearded red-suited Santa Claus we know and love. Every kid wondering where Santa and many Christmas traditions come from will delight in this movie.
Christmas Every Day
365 days is a long time to wait for any kid with a short attention span, and that’s most A day full of presents and candy like Christmas is something I’m sure many kids have wished would happen every day. But, in the obscure but entertaining TV-movie Christmas Every Day, it’s not everything it’s cracked up to be. Billy Jackson is a selfish teenage boy forced to relieve the day over and over again until he learns the true meaning of Christmas. A Groundhog Day for the holidays, it’s a surefire winner for any Christmas-obsessed kid.