It seems the list of Christmas movies is never-ending.
“It’s a Wonderful Life” was rated the best Christmas movie of all time on Today.com, but other media and news organizations are offering alternatives to your typical Christmas movie. Some films feature holiday festivities and chubby men in red suits, while others merely just take place during the Christmas season.
WyomingNews.com writer Josh Rhoten offered a list of Christmas movies that don’t feature the normal holiday expectations — eggnog, Santa Claus, gift-wrapping — but still have a Christmas setting.
“The holiday movie season is upon us. Time to throw on a DVD you know by heart and wade into the nostalgia and good feelings with open arms,” he wrote. “But what if you are tired of this yearly binge cycle? I mean, theoretically, there is a limit to how many times you can see ‘Elf,’ though I haven't found it yet. What are the other options that still count as Christmas movies?”
Some options, according to Rhoten, include “Iron Man 3,” (2013) “Batman Returns” (1992) and “Die Hard” (1988), which all “were not necessarily about the holidays, but they are tied to the holidays,” he wrote.
Leah Pickett of WBEZ.org published her 11 alternative Christmas movies, which go against the traditional standards of a Christmas movie, she wrote.
“If you're looking for a new yuletide tradition that doesn't involve endless rounds of carol-singing, or if you've simply had your fill of Bing Crosby and ‘Frosty the Snowman,’ then I suggest treating yourself to a Christmas movie with a little more bite,” wrote Pickett.
Pickett’s options include “Gremlins” (1984), “Edward Scissorhands” (1990) and “The Nightmare Before Christmas” (1993).
Pickett said she stepped away from watching regular Christmas movies after they stopped fulfilling her and focused too much on commercialism, she said. Instead, she dipped into the non-traditional, and sometimes darker, movies that feature Christmas settings.
But some of the usual Christmas films are getting their fair share of criticism from writers.
Chicago Now, a blogging website for the Chicago area, featured an article written by Joe Grace, who discussed Christmas films — “the good, the bad and the ugly,” the article said — with fellow commentator Jakob Bilinski.
“Could it be that a lot of the classic Christmas movies we grew up with are terrible movies masked by our holiday-infused memories of them?” wrote Grace. “I hope I'm wrong here. Am I wrong? Please tell me I'm wrong. I don't want to live in a world where 'Home Alone' is a terrible movie.”
He may not be far off. CDAPress.com published an article that said “Jingle All the Way" (1996), which stars Arnold Schwarzenegger, who plays a suburban dad on the hunt for his son’s desired Christmas gift, was rated the “best worst Christmas movie," despite its popularity.
“Of course now we all know that ‘Jingle All the Way’ is just awful. Hilariously, stupendously awful,” wrote Tyler Wilson for the Press. “The movie is available on Netflix Instant Streaming, and taken with several swigs of egg nog, it's the most fun you'll have this holiday season.”
Despite the varying opinions on the Christmas movies, it seems there’s an option out there for everyone to celebrate the holiday.