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10 Great Christmas Movies You Can Watch with your Family

This year, we're taking a look at some 10 great Christmas films you can watch with your family.

On Christmas Eve, we'll post the first five films and then on Christmas Day, this list will be updated with the second half of the list. Check out our first selections below.

It’s a Wonderful Life (1946): A true classic, this Frank Capra drama has become a perennial favorite for those looking for an uplifting tale about the holiday spirit. Starring Jimmy Stewart, the upbeat story shows how one man’s life affected an entire community.

Although there are a few darker scenes in the film, its celebrated message about living a meaningful life remains as relevant as it ever was.

Miracle on 34th Street (1947/1994): As with a few of the other selections on this life, there are multiple versions about this positive tale. Some viewers might prefer the classic 1947 feature featuring Maureen O’Hara and Edmund Gwenn while others might enjoy the 1994 version starring Mara Wilson and Richard Attenborough.

In both versions of the story, there’s a courtroom debate about whether or not Santa Claus really exists. While cynics try to prove otherwise, many of the main characters work together to show the true spirit of the season.

White Christmas (1954): Co-starring Bing Crosby and Danny Kaye, this Christmas film remains a true classic holiday film. Focused on two veterans who form a business partnership as entertainers, the feature includes a number of memorable musical moments celebrating the season.

Co-starring Rosemary Clooney and Vera-Ellen, the movie was a huge box office success and remains a beloved feature that families can enjoy even now.   

How the Grinch Stole Christmas (Different versions): Dr. Seuss’ book How The Grinch Stole Christmas is a timeless story about a selfish character trying to take Christmas away from a whole community. The story has been told countless times onscreen. From the 1966 cartoon to the 2000 version featuring Jim Carrey to the 2018 animated version, there are countless ways to enjoy the unforgettable tale.

In each of them, the main character begrudgingly learns what Christmas is all about.

Home Alone (1990):  In this 1990 comedy, Macauley Culkin stars as a youngster who is accidentally left all alone when his family departs on vacation. Co-starring Daniel Stern and Joe Pesci, the feature shows what happens when a young boy faces off against two troublesome burglars.

In the end, the holiday film shows the main character realizing what the holidays are really all about.   

The Muppet Christmas Carol (1992): There are multiple versions of Charles Dickens' classic tale but this one might be the most colorful. Combining the seriousness of the well-known tale with the silliness of the muppets, the feature offers a style all its own. 

Featuring Michael Caine as Scrooge and Kermit the Frog as Bob Cratchit, the film should bring a smile to members of all generations.

The Santa Clause (1994): There were two sequels to this Tim Allen comedy but the original was undeniably the best. The Home Improvement actor stars as a man who takes over the role of Santa Claus after an unfortunate accident.

With a good message about the importance of the holiday and a solid story, this feature offers plenty of laughs and a few nice surprises.

Elf (2003): Starring Will Ferrell, this 2003 comedy tells the story of a man trying to figure out his true roots. After being raised as an elf, the main character travels to the United States longing to see where he came from.

Directed by Jon Favreau, the comedy is playful and silly but it’s also packed with humor and heart.

The Man who invented Christmas (2017): Starring Dan Stevens as Charles Dickens, this film tells a fictional tale about the impetus for A Christmas Carol. Adapted from the book by Les Standiford, the film tells the tale of Dickens struggling with his past while trying to write a new novel.

Co-starring Christopher Plummer, the film offers an inventive new way to look at Dickens' classic tale and how the author might’ve found the inspiration to bring these characters to the literary world.

Jingle Jangle: A Christmas Journey (2020): The newest film on our list, this Netflix Christmas film only premiered a few weeks ago on the streaming service. Centered on an inventor who has lost his way, the feature has a vibrancy and a joy to it that springs off the screen.

Featuring Forrest Whitaker, a boisterous Keegan-Michael Key and newcomer Madalen Mills, the story tells an uplifting tale about finding your way back to your dreams in spite of the obstacles that have gotten in the way.

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