Ranking Christmas Movies

Your Guide to Christmas Classics


With the holidays approaching, the best way to get into the holiday spirit is by watching some of the best Christmas movies. While there are several classics to watch around the Christmas season, this guide will reveal the top options. Keep reading to find out more about the best Christmas movies to keep you entertained this month!

1. National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation 

This movie has been my favorite Christmas movie for as long as I can remember. The classic family Christmas dynamic and comedic highlights of this movie secures its number one spot. Following Clark Griswold and his family to having a good old fashioned Griswold family Christmas is ended with a nightmare Christmas Eve dinner, but, there is a happy ending. If you have never seen this movie, I would definitely recommend watching. 



2. Elf 

Along with Christmas Vacation, Elf has always been a top tier classic. All of the whimsical aspects of Christmas are put in conjunction with the city life of NYC, which throws Buddy for a loop. Buddy the Elf is thrown into Santa’s workshop as a baby, but goes on a journey to New York City to find his biological dad. This classic will definitely put you into the Christmas spirit and keep you singing your holiday favorites all season long. 



3. The Santa Clause Trilogy

All three of these movies are solid choices. After the old Santa Clause falls off of the roof on Christmas Eve, Scott Calvin is forced to step into the role and become Santa Clause. Throughout the three movies, Scott Calvin and his family’s lives transform to fulfill this role. Overall, these movies are very sweet and a good way to get into the Christmas spirit. If Santa Clause ever falls off of your roof, make sure to put on the suit.  




4. Home Alone

After getting left behind on his family’s trip to Paris, Kevin gets left home alone. The night before the family left, Kevin had wished for his family to disappear after getting in trouble, so he was under the impression that this was all due to his wish coming true. Life was good for Kevin until two men planned to rob the home and Kevin was forced to do everything in his power to protect his family’s home. Kevin’s antics will definitely get you into the holiday spirit!



5. The Polar Express 

Polar Express has always been a classic option. Whether watching this movie brings you back to the last day before Christmas break in elementary school or puts you on that train ride to the North Pole, it has all the right holiday feels. A doubting young boy is invited outside of a once in a lifetime train ride experience to the North Pole to ensure his belief in the beloved Santa Clause. Truly a classic, but does not quite beat some of the other movies on this list.



Short Animated

1. Rudolph

This movie definitely deserves to rank at the top of this category. When you think Christmas, you think Rudolph; this movie is a go-to Christmas movie to ease into the season. After finding out he has been born with an unusual glowing red nose, Rudolph ends up saving Christmas, guiding Santa through the fog. The most classic of them all.




2. How the Grinch Stole Christmas 

The Grinch decides to ruin Christmas for the Whos down in Whoville by stealing all of their presents and decorations on Christmas Eve. Once he sees the Whos continue to celebrate Christmas despite the lack of presents and preparations, he realizes that Christmas is not about the money and presents. The Grinch returns all of the belongings with his beloved dog Max and celebrates the true meaning of the holiday, plus, his heart grows three sizes. This is also another great starter movie for the holiday season.




3. Santa Claus is Comin’ to Town

While also on the older side, this movie has been a staple for all of the Christmas seasons that I can remember. It follows Kris Kringle’s journey delivering presents to the children of Sombertown and the problem he faces in doing this which eventually led to “Santa Clause”. This short story encapsulates many of the classic traditions of Christmas and the meanings behind these.




4. Frosty the Snowman

After getting ahold of a magical hat, Frosty the Snowman comes alive and the children that made him help him on his journey to remain ‘alive’ and keep from melting. Professor Hinkle realizes the hat was magic and wants it back, but the children know that this cannot happen. Frosty and Karen hop on a train to the North Pole in order to keep Frosty from melting. Although they are forced to part ways, Frosty reassures the children that he “will be back someday”.



5. The Year Without a Santa Claus

This claymation movie has always been a staple. After Santa Claus is frightened with the possibility that he will not be able to travel and deliver presents on Christmas Eve due to a sickness, he becomes convinced that no children care about him anymore and he will just stop delivering gifts. Mrs. Claus and two of their reindeers, Jingle and Jangles, go on a journey to ensure the spirit of Christmas, despite run ins with the Heat and Snow Misers. Luckily, the spirit of Christmas is revitalized.