A freelance writer who loves photographing the beauty of nature, travelling, writing, swimming, and singing
Published November 21st 2016
Christmas is a wonderful time of year; that holiday buzz all around, shops bursting with beautifully packaged goodies, over-indulging in food, and gatherings with family and friends. After all that celebration, when you just want to plonk on the couch and veg out, or it's just too hot/wet to go outside, here are my favourite feel-good movies (totally subjective!). They celebrate life, good things, good thoughts, and a really good excuse to just sit for a couple of hours and get lost in time. I like my movie to be family-friendly - not too awful, too scary, too sad, or too schmaltzy, something that even the blokes are happy to watch. They're not ranked, as I'm sure you've got plenty of your own suggestions.
Will Ferrell in 'Elf, courtesy web image'
1. ELF - a family comedy starring Will Ferrell. He plays one of Santa's helpers, funny, good-natured and lots of fun.
Tim Allen in 'Santa Claus, courtesy web image'
2. THE SANTA CLAUS - cynical Tim Allen at his best as he morphs into the role of Santa. The sleigh, elves and a fluffy white beard add up to good old-fashioned make-believe.
A huge cast in 'Love Actually, courtesy web image'
3. LOVE ACTUALLY - okay this one may be aimed more at adults, and a little too schmaltzy for some, but with nine plot-lines and a huge cast who you probably love or hate, there's sure to be something for everyone in there somewhere.
Tom Hanks in 'The Polar Express, courtesy web image'
4. THE POLAR EXPRESS - this performance-capture-animation stars Tom Hanks as Santa, narrator, and train conductor. A group of kids board a train and are whisked away on an adventure.
Animated 'Arthur Christmas, courtesy web image'
5. ARTHUR CHRISTMAS - this fun animation tells the story of Arthur, son of Santa, as he leaves the north pole on a mission. How does Santa visit all those homes so quickly? With an army of elves and.... if I tell you any more I'll give the plot away.
Wonderful 'The Muppet Christmas Carol, courtesy web image
6. THE MUPPET CHRISTMAS CAROL - anyone who loves Sesame Street is going to love this. Gonzo, Miss Piggy, Kermit and the whole gaggle of pigs, rats, and hilarious creatures pay homage to Dickens' classic story.
The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch & The Wardrobe, courtesy web image
7. CHRONICLES OF NARNIA: The Lion, The Witch & The Wardrobe - C.S. Lewis' wonderful story of children climbing through a cupboard and encountering Father Christmas, of good triumphing over evil. Very child-friendly.
Charlie Brown's Christmas, courtesy web image
8. A Charlie Brown Christmas - at a running time of only 25 minutes, this could almost be the perfect Christmas movie. If you can't handle too much schmaltz or long drawn out plots, then this is for you, if only for the musical score. Charlie Brown addresses the commercialism of Christmas, ends up directing the school pageant, and being inspired by a little fir tree.
Danny DeVito in 'Deck the Halls, courtesy web image'
10. DIE HARD - so changing the pace a little here, at first glance it doesn't fit the usual bill of a Christmas movie. Bruce Willis plays an NYPD officer who just wants to get home for the holidays and spend time with his children. He gets 'delayed' by some bombs and terrorists, so maybe wait until the littlies are in bed before switching it on. A good one for the blokes.
You'll find them on DVD or download. I'm sure you have your own list; feel free to add your favourites.