Our favourite Christmas movies

Top 10 family Christmas movies

The Polar Express (PG)

On Christmas Eve, a doubting boy boards a magical train that’s headed to the North Pole and Santa Claus’s home. An animated film voiced by Tom Hanks, this is as spectacular to look at as it is touching and enchanting.

Elf (PG)

After inadvertently wreaking havoc on the elf community due to his ungainly size, a man raised as an elf (Will Farrell) at the North Pole is sent to the U.S. in search of his true identity. Hilarious comedy kids and parents will love equally.

The Grinch (PG)

Inside a snowflake is the magical land of Whoville, populated by the ‘Whos’. All the Whos love Christmas – except for The Grinch, a nasty creature who plots to steal Christmas away forever. Jim Carey stars in this live action film that brings the Dr Seuss classic children’s book to life.

It’s a Wonderful Life (1946)

An angel helps a compassionate but despairingly frustrated businessman by showing what life would have been like if he never existed. Premiering in 1946 and starring James Stewart and Donna Reed, this heart-warming, bittersweet film still has plenty to give and should be essential Christmas viewing.

The Santa Clause (PG)

When a man inadvertently kills Santa on Christmas Eve, he finds himself magically recruited to take his place.  Starring comedian Tim Allen, this is the first of a light-hearted Christmas trio of movies. Don’t waste your time (or money) watching the sequels – this is far and away the best of the three Santa Clause films.

Nightmare before Christmas (PG)

When Jack Skellington, the bored Pumpkin King of Halloweentown, stumbles upon Christmastown, he decides to change Christmas into another Halloween. He kidnaps Santa Claus then delivers some alternative gifts to the children. A stop-motion animated classic directed by Tim Burton, it has all the dark and dazzling Burton magic you would expect, full of twisted characters and stunning imagery.

Miracle On 34th Street(1947)

When a nice old man who claims to be Santa Claus is institutionalized as insane, a young lawyer decides to defend him by arguing in court that he is the real thing. Starring Maureen O’Hara and a nine year-old Natalie Wood, this is the real deal – a Christmas movie that has something for both adults and children and makes you want to believe again in all the Santa Claus business.

Home Alone (PG)

When 8-year-old Kevin McCallister is accidentally left behind while his family flies to France for Christmas, he has to defend his home against idiotic burglars. Child star Macaulay Culkin stars in this black comedy for kids that is surprisingly charming.

A Christmas Story (PG)

Set in the 1940s, young Ralphie has to convince his parents, teachers, and Santa that a Red Ryder BB gun really is the perfect gift for Christmas. Funny, touching and nostalgic without any of the saccharine sweetness of so many Christmas films, this is a festive flick that will appeal to all comers.

A White Christmas (1954)

Ex-Army buddies team up to become a top song-and-dance act and find themselves sharing the stage with a pair of beautiful sisters to perform a Christmas show in Vermont. Starring silver screen legends, Bing Crosby and Danny Kaye, this is all about the song and dance from beginning to end with Irving Berlin’s tunes being the stand-out.

Naughty-but-nice Christmas movies (for after the kids go to bed):

So there are some Christmas movies that we love for all the wrong reasons… they’re silly, they’re subversive and they’re definitely not G-rated! Here are three of the best:

National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (1989)

Like all National Lampoon films, you have to love slap-stick comedy to get the most out of this franchise. On this outing, the Griswald family plan on staying home for the festive season to enjoy the best Christmas ever. Cue crazy scenes of Chevy Chase putting up Christmas lights, Christmas trees and other madcap family mayhem.

Scrooged (1988)

Bill Murray stars in this anti-Christmas classic that brings the old Dickens tale – cynical man is haunted by three Christmas spirits on Christmas Eve, thus teaching him the true spirit of Christmas – into the modern day. With Murray in the starring role, it is of course, darkly comic and a little disturbing.

Bad Santa (2003)

Rude, crude and surprisingly touching, Bad Santa is a dark comedy starring Billy Bob Thornton as a con man masquerading as a mall Santa. Out to rip off stores full of Christmas goodies, this bad Santa’s plans come unstuck when he befriends a troubled kid who needs his help.

Christmas TV specials from your childhood

Back in the day (we’re talking pre-1980s here so before videos and DVDs came along, and a lifetime before Foxtel’s IQ digital recording boxes existed), much of the excitement of Christmas for kids came in the form of Christmas TV specials. Once a year – and only once a year – you could watch your favourite Christmas shows.

They were the same shows every year and re-ran multiple times during the weeks before Christmas. They were old and dated even in the 1970s, but they were a highlight of the festive season and set the tone for the Christmas yet to come. So here are three of our childhood favourites:

Frosty the Snowman

When Frosty the Snowman is accidentally brought to life, he must weather a storm of adventures and the dastardly plans of an evil magician before he can find safety and happiness. Premiering in 1969, this classic animated tale has aired every year since.

Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer

We all know the familiar story of Rudolph, the young reindeer with the bright red nose, who is shunned by his reindeer pals for being different. But when Santa can’t deliver his presents on Christmas Eve because of fog, Rudolph and his nose save the day. Following the plot of this classic Christmas song, this beautiful stop-motion animation has been in high rotation since it premiered in 1964.

The Little Drummer Boy

If you want your Christmas fare a little more biblical, you can’t go past the gorgeously animated The Little Drummer Boy from 1968. Telling the story of a lonely little boy who visits a manger in Bethlehem to discover the greatest gift of all – love, this is the perfect Christmas movie complete with beautiful soundtrack.

Cute kids DVD’s

Albert – A Big Dream

Albert may be small for an evergreen, but he’s got big dreams to become the most famous Christmas tree in the world! In Nickelodeon’s original holiday movie, get ready to root for the most unlikely hero the holidays have ever seen as Albert and his friends set out to make a merry miracle!

Home: For the Holidays

This holiday season, it’s Oh’s very first Christmas on Earth. Unfamiliar with any of these human traditions, Tip does her best to explain Christmas and introduce all things holiday in DreamWorks Home: For the Holidays. Together, they decide to extent the holiday magic by bringing Christmas to Boovsland and teaching the Boov all about the special season!

NellaNella The Princess Knight: The Knight Before Christmas
Dash into winter with Nella in 7 dazzling adventures, featuring a double-length quest to save Christmas!

Join a race to find Santa’s stolen presents and teach the Frostbite brothers the true meaning of the holidays. Then, go in search of a magical ice crystal to make it snow in time for the winter festival… and more!

Hello ChristmasPJ Masks: Hello Christmas
Luna Girl is sucking Christmas presents out of Chimneys. If Gekko can get her luna Board, Luna Girl won’t be able to ruin Christmas. Romeo plans to ice up the whole city and turn it into a giant ice rink that only he can ride around on. Can Gekko stop him?

What’s your favourite Christmas movie?


  1. dawnblyth 06/01/2019 at 9:53 pm

    Nice to see some old school movies here rather than just Home Alone or other regularly played movies.

  2. Shelz69 06/01/2019 at 1:08 pm

    My children love the Polar express and I’m a fan of Elf. I love action movies normally but at christmas I love watching all the Meg Ryan movies, you’ve got Mail, sleepless in seattle and French Kiss. I’m not sure what it is but I just love watching them at xmas time.

  3. Alezandra 04/01/2019 at 8:34 pm

    Where’s Home Alone and of course for the adults…Die Hard! Lol. But it’s a good list. Still have a few days left of the holidays before we go back to work. Will get on doing a movie marathon just to squeeze more Christmas cheer!

  4. Shorrty4life1 03/01/2019 at 4:42 pm

    Omg my two all time favourite Christmas movies are in the list of course bad Santa and home alone. No one can beat those two movies around this time of the year. Home alone might be my Netflix movie pick tonight actually just thinking about it we didn’t watch it at Christmas time due to camping no TV and electronics. Sound like a great movie night in store for us tonight. We watched elf this year with the kids. I found that a funny one too

  5. kymmage 31/12/2018 at 1:03 pm

    Elf is probably my most favourite Christmas movie. My husband would say Die Hard 😂 the kids have loved watching the Christmas Chronicles on Netflix this year. I love watching classics with them too. Things from my childhood. I so want to watch Home Alone with them.

  6. SarahBlair 24/12/2018 at 5:32 pm

    What a good list! I haven’t seen a lot of these, I might have to look out for them to watch them, my kids have been watching a few Christmas movies over the last few days, I think that we will watch The Polar Express tonight (Christmas Eve) before bed!

  7. MuddledUpMolly 20/12/2018 at 10:01 pm

    Such a fantastic list of movies! I agree with all the ones I know but I so think that Home Alone 2 should be on there too 🙂 Every Christmas we make sure we watch both the first and second one, they never get old!!

  8. felicity beets 20/12/2018 at 8:52 am

    A great selection and quite a few i have not seen. I also love the love actually movie and probably my favourite christmas movie

  9. Micht 18/12/2018 at 7:39 pm

    Glad to see Home Alone made the cut… i need to watch a few of these myself for the first time…another one i remember watching every year was “Dinner for One” it never got old…

  10. Mands1980 18/12/2018 at 5:50 pm

    Our kids loved the polar express and they just watched elf the other day I think it was on Netflix. Netflix is great they have a few Christmas movies on there at the moment that you of course don’t have to pay extra for and tv 2 has been putting them on tv lately.

  11. Bevik1971 18/12/2018 at 12:01 pm

    Classic – hubby took our daughter to see The Grinch about a week ago and she liked it. I see that the Polar Express is on Netflix at the moment, but our daughter didn’t show much interest in watching it haha. Elf is funny and I also like Scrooged as I love Bill Murray 🙂

  12. Mands1980 20/11/2017 at 6:13 pm

    My kids love the polar express it’s such a great movie not a dull moment they have not seen all these movies but has given me more ideas to show them

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