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Nebraska Furniture Mart | January 19, 2019

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10 Essential Movies to Get You Excited for Christmas

christmas movies
Adam Logan

I enjoy everything about Christmas; hanging up Christmas lights, telling stories about Santa Claus, and watching Christmas movies when it’s cold outside. There’s so many good movies to choose from and I feel like I don’t ever get to them all. So each year, I try to watch a handful of these movies with friends and family.

If you have some extra time off of work in the weeks ahead, relax and embrace the holiday spirit with some of these classic Christmas movies.

How the Grinch Stole Christmas – I’ve probably seen this more often than any other Christmas movie. It’s short enough to watch on a weeknight and delivers an excellent message. My kids love when the Grinch figures things out and comes trumpeting back down the mountain to bring the presents back to Whoville. Who doesn’t love a good redemption story?

Home Alone  – When I was a kid, I think it took four or five visits to the theater before we were finally able to see this movie. It was sold out every time we went. So by the time I finally got to watch it, the hype was unreal.

Fortunately, it lived up to my expectations. Kevin McCallister was an inspiration to me. In the following weeks, I set several poorly thought-out traps around the house. They were completely ineffective and probably just annoyed my parents.

National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation – The older I get, the more I can relate to the struggles of Clark Griswold. Rallying a family get-together for Christmas is hard enough as is, but I can’t imagine dealing with his insane family.

A Christmas Story – TBS plays this movie for 24 hours straight every year. I can’t remember the first time that I saw it, but I just remember it always being there during the holidays.  Congratulations if you haven’t seen it before. It’s hard to have that kind of discipline in life.

Frosty the Snowman – As a kid, this was one of my favorites. I remember that the gut-punch of Frosty melting away was pretty tough to deal with. I’m sure I wasn’t the only kid who yelled at Professor Hinkle through the TV. Luckily, Frosty comes back thanks to Santa Claus. Crisis averted.

It’s A Wonderful Life – This 1946 classic from Frank Capra is simply one of the best movies ever made. Like watching a Norman Rockwell painting come to life, this movie shows the positive impact that one person can have on others. Everything that’s good about the American Dream can be found in the earnest approach and can-do attitude of George Bailey.

Elf – This might go down as the best Christmas film of our generation.  It was Will Ferrell’s first post-SNL hit and he’s pretty much perfect throughout the film.  I can’t imagine anyone else playing the role of Buddy the Elf.

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer  – Burl Ives has the perfect voice for narrating this Christmas tale about a couple of misfits that save Christmas. Yukon Cornelius has forever inspired me to chip away at a piles of ice in search of silver.  It’s also the only stop-motion animation Christmas movie that I don’t find really weird.

The Muppet Christmas Carol – The Muppets bring some fun to this classic Charles Dickens tale about nasty old Ebenezer Scrooge. In my opinion, Gonzo the Great can proudly stand next to Burl Ives as one of the best narrators of all time.

Die Hard – No doubt about it, Die Hard is my all-time favorite Christmas movie. Put the kids to bed and get ready to crank up the surround sound. Few things get me more amped for the holidays than Die Hard. When John McClane gets in the limo and “Christmas in Hollis” starts playing, you know things are about to get real!

It’s the classic tale of your everyday New York City cop that just wants to have a normal Christmas. Then, some pesky German terrorists break up his wife’s Christmas party and things quickly go to hell. Who can’t relate to that? There’s Christmas songs, Santa jokes, and a happy ending. What more could you ask for?


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