The Best Christmas Movies to Watch This Season

best christmas movies

The season is a time for cozying up with loved ones, sipping hot cocoa, and enjoying the magic of Christmas movies. From timeless classics to modern hits, Christmas films bring joy and warmth to our hearts. Whether you’re in the mood for a heartfelt story, a family-friendly adventure, or a laugh-out-loud comedy, this list of the best Christmas movies has something for everyone.

Classic and Best Christmas Movies To Watch in 2024

It’s a Wonderful Life

Frank Capra’s “It’s a Wonderful Life” is perhaps the quintessential Christmas movie. Starring James Stewart as George Bailey, the film tells the story of a man who, with the help of a guardian angel, discovers the profound impact he has had on his community. The movie’s message of hope, love, and the importance of each individual’s life resonates deeply, making it a perennial favorite.

Miracle on 34th Street

“Miracle on 34th Street” is another timeless classic that captures the magic of Christmas. The story centers on Kris Kringle, a man who claims to be the real Santa Claus, and his efforts to spread holiday cheer despite skepticism from the adults around him. This heartwarming film underscores the themes of belief and generosity, making it a must-watch during the festive season.

A Christmas Carol

Charles Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol” has been adapted numerous times, but each version brings its unique charm to the tale of Ebenezer Scrooge. Whether it’s the classic 1951 version starring Alastair Sim or the 1992 Muppet adaptation, this story of redemption and the true spirit of Christmas continues to enchant audiences of all ages.

Animated Best Christmas Movies

A Charlie Brown Christmas

No holiday season is complete without “A Charlie Brown Christmas.” This beloved animated special follows Charlie Brown as he searches for the true meaning of Christmas amidst the commercialism and materialism that often overshadow the holiday. The touching finale, featuring Linus reciting the nativity story, is a poignant reminder of the holiday’s deeper significance.

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer

The stop-motion classic “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” has been a holiday staple since its debut in 1964. The tale of the misfit reindeer who saves Christmas with his glowing red nose is a charming and heartwarming story about acceptance, self-worth, and the power of being different.

The Nightmare Before Christmas

Tim Burton’s “The Nightmare Before Christmas” is a unique blend of Halloween and Christmas, telling the story of Jack Skellington, the Pumpkin King of Halloween Town, who becomes enamored with Christmas. This visually stunning film, with its catchy songs and imaginative storyline, has become a cult classic enjoyed by both children and adults.

Modern Christmas Hits 2024

Home Alone

“Home Alone” remains one of the most beloved Christmas comedies of all time. The story of young Kevin McCallister, who is accidentally left behind when his family goes on vacation and must defend his home from burglars, is both hilarious and heartwarming. The film’s slapstick humor and holiday hijinks make it a perennial favorite for family movie nights.


Will Ferrell’s performance as Buddy the Elf in “Elf” has cemented this film’s status as a modern Christmas classic. The story of a human raised by elves at the North Pole, who journeys to New York City to find his biological father, is filled with humor, heart, and holiday spirit. Buddy’s infectious enthusiasm for Christmas makes this movie a joyful addition to any holiday viewing list.

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The Polar Express

“The Polar Express,” based on the beloved children’s book by Chris Van Allsburg, is a visually stunning animated film that captures the wonder and magic of Christmas. The story follows a young boy who embarks on a magical train ride to the North Pole, discovering the true spirit of Christmas along the way. With its beautiful animation and enchanting storyline, “The Polar Express” is a holiday favorite for all ages.

Best Romantic  Christmas Movies

Love Actually

“Love Actually” weaves together multiple storylines of love and romance set against the backdrop of the holiday season. With an ensemble cast featuring Hugh Grant, Emma Thompson, and Liam Neeson, this film explores the complexities of love in all its forms. Its heartfelt moments and charming humor make it a beloved romantic Christmas movie.

The Holiday

In “The Holiday,” two women from different continents, played by Cameron Diaz and Kate Winslet, swap homes for the holiday season to escape their personal troubles. What follows is a heartwarming and romantic adventure as they each find new love and rediscover themselves. This feel-good film is perfect for those looking for a touch of romance during the holidays.

Last Christmas

Inspired by the music of George Michael, “Last Christmas” stars Emilia Clarke and Henry Golding in a heartwarming romantic comedy. The story follows Kate, a young woman struggling with life and love, who finds unexpected romance during the festive season. With its touching storyline and memorable soundtrack, “Last Christmas” is a delightful holiday romance.

Family-Friendly Best Christmas Movies

The Santa Clause

Tim Allen stars in “The Santa Clause,” a family-friendly film that has become a holiday staple. The story follows Scott Calvin, a man who accidentally causes Santa to fall from his roof on Christmas Eve and then finds himself magically recruited to take his place. This charming film, with its humorous and heartwarming moments, is perfect for family viewing.

How the Grinch Stole Christmas

Dr. Seuss’s beloved holiday tale has been adapted into both an animated special and a live-action film. “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” tells the story of the Grinch, a misanthropic creature who plans to steal Christmas from the Whos of Whoville, only to discover the true meaning of the holiday. Both versions capture the magic and heart of the original story, making it a must-watch for families.

Arthur Christmas

Arthur Christmas” is a delightful animated film that offers a fresh take on the Santa Claus legend. The story follows Arthur, Santa’s clumsy but good-hearted son, as he embarks on a mission to deliver a forgotten present before Christmas morning. With its charming characters and heartwarming message, “Arthur Christmas” is a modern classic that appeals to both kids and adults.

Best Christmas Comedies

National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation

“National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation” is a hilarious look at the chaos and mishaps of the holiday season. Starring Chevy Chase as Clark Griswold, the film follows the Griswold family as they try to have the perfect Christmas, only to encounter one disaster after another. Its blend of slapstick humor and relatable holiday stress makes it a comedy classic.


Bill Murray stars in “Scrooged,” a modern and comedic retelling of Charles Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol.” Murray plays a cynical television executive who is visited by three spirits on Christmas Eve, leading to a humorous and heartfelt journey of self-discovery. The film’s witty dialogue and Murray’s performance make it a standout holiday comedy.

Bad Santa

For those looking for a more irreverent take on the holiday season, “Bad Santa” delivers with dark humor and a twisted storyline. Billy Bob Thornton stars as a conman who poses as a mall Santa to rob department stores on Christmas Eve. Despite its edgy humor, the film ultimately offers a redemptive arc, making it a unique addition to holiday viewing.

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Underrated Best Christmas Gems

The Family Stone

“Jingle Jangle: A Christmas Journey” is a visually stunning musical fantasy that has quickly become a new holiday favorite. The film follows an eccentric toymaker, his adventurous granddaughter, and a magical invention that has the power to change their lives forever. With its vibrant production design and uplifting story, “Jingle Jangle” is a must-watch for the whole family.


“Klaus” is a beautifully animated film that offers a unique origin story of Santa Claus. The story follows a postman and a reclusive toymaker who team up to bring joy to a cold, unfriendly town. The film’s stunning animation and heartfelt message have earned it critical acclaim and a special place among modern Christmas classics.

Best International Christmas Movies

Joyeux Noël

“Joyeux Noël” is a powerful and moving film based on the true story of the Christmas Truce of 1914, when soldiers on opposing sides of World War I laid down their arms and celebrated Christmas together. The film highlights the humanity and compassion that can emerge even in the darkest of times, making it a poignant holiday watch.

Rare Exports: A Christmas Tale

“Rare Exports: A Christmas Tale” is a darkly humorous Finnish film that offers a unique and twisted take on the Santa Claus legend. The story follows a group of people who discover the true, terrifying nature of Santa Claus buried deep in the mountains. This film is perfect for those looking for a Christmas movie with a bit of an edge.

Tokyo Godfathers

“Tokyo Godfathers” is a Japanese animated film that tells the heartwarming story of three homeless individuals who find an abandoned baby on Christmas Eve and set out to find its parents. The film blends humor, drama, and holiday spirit, offering a unique and touching narrative that resonates with themes of family and redemption.

Best Christmas Movie Soundtracks

Iconic Songs from Christmas Movies

Many Christmas movies feature iconic songs that have become synonymous with the holiday season. From “White Christmas” in the film of the same name to “All I Want for Christmas Is You” in “Love Actually,” these soundtracks enhance the festive atmosphere and evoke fond memories of holiday celebrations.

Composers Behind the Music

The composers behind Christmas movie soundtracks play a crucial role in creating the magical and nostalgic feel of these films. Renowned composers like John Williams, who scored “Home Alone,” and Danny Elfman, who composed the music for “The Nightmare Before Christmas,” have crafted memorable scores that elevate the holiday movie experience.

Streaming Services and Availability

Where to Watch Classic Christmas Movies

Many classic Christmas movies are available on popular streaming platforms. “It’s a Wonderful Life” and “Miracle on 34th Street” can often be found on services like Amazon Prime and Disney+, making it easy to enjoy these timeless films during the holiday season.

Modern Hits on Streaming Platforms

Modern Christmas hits like “Elf” and “Home Alone” are also widely available on streaming services such as Netflix, Hulu, and Disney+. These platforms often feature curated holiday collections, allowing viewers to easily access their favorite Christmas movies.


What are some must-watch Christmas movies?

Some must-watch Christmas movies include “It’s a Wonderful Life,” “Home Alone,” “Elf,” and “A Christmas Carol.” These films capture the magic and spirit of the holiday season.

Are there any new Christmas movies to watch?

Yes, recent releases like “Jingle Jangle: A Christmas Journey” and “Last Christmas” offer fresh takes on holiday storytelling and have quickly become new favorites.

Where can I stream classic Christmas movies?

Classic Christmas movies can be streamed on platforms like Amazon Prime, Disney+, and Hulu. Check the holiday collections on these services for a wide selection of festive films.

What are some good family-friendly Christmas movies?

Family-friendly Christmas movies include “The Santa Clause,” “Arthur Christmas,” and “How the Grinch Stole Christmas.” These films are perfect for viewers of all ages.

What are some underrated Christmas movies?

Underrated Christmas movies like “The Family Stone,” “Klaus,” and “Tokyo Godfathers” offer unique and touching stories that are worth adding to your holiday watchlist.

What makes a great Christmas movie soundtrack?

A great Christmas movie soundtrack features memorable and festive music that enhances the film’s atmosphere. Iconic songs and well-composed scores contribute to the overall magic and nostalgia of the holiday season.


The best Christmas movies bring joy, warmth, and a touch of magic to the holiday season. Whether you’re revisiting classic favorites or discovering new gems, these films offer something for everyone. As you gather with loved ones to celebrate, let the magic of Christmas movies fill your hearts with cheer and create lasting memories.