Friday, December 19, 2008

My Top Ten Classic Christmas Movies

One of my favorite things about the holidays is seeing again my favorite classic Christmas movies. I have been searching IMDB to see when they are playing and recording them on my dvr.

1. Christmas in Connecticut - Barbara Stanwyck writes a magazine column and pretends to be an early version of Martha Stewart, when in reality she lives alone and can't even boil water. When a returning war hero wants to spend Christmas with her and her family on her farm, hijinks and romance ensue. On TCM tonight!

2. White Christmas - Bing Crosby and Dany Kaye are musical showmen and former war buddies, who show up at a Vermont inn where their old General is now the innkeeper. Lots of great song and dance numbers. Guess what - hijinks and romance ensue!! On Lifetime tonight!

3. Holiday Inn - Often confused with White Christmas, because it also stars Bing Crosby, also takes place in an inn, and also features the song White Christmas. Bing plays the singing half of a song and dance team. His partner is Fred Astaire, and their partnership breaks up when Fred runs off with Bing's fiancee. Brokenhearted, Bing retires to a big house in the country which he opens up as an Inn only on holidays. On RETRO tomorrow!

4. The Bells of St Marys - Another Bing Crosby movie, but completely different from the others. Bing is the newly assigned parish priest sent to close down the parish school, and Ingrid Bergman is the strong willed nun determined not only to keep it open but to get a new school building. Nominated for Best Picture in 1945, and Bergman won the Golden Globe for her performance. TCM tomorrow!

5. It's a Wonderful Life - Jimmy Stewart has lived a life taking care of others while his own dreams fell to the wayside, and when he finds himself in trouble, he contemplates suicide. His guardian angel gives him the chance to see what the world would have been like had he never lived. Hokey? Yes, but one of my all time favorites with a message we should all think about. On NBC Chrismas Eve night.

6. The Shop Around the Corner - Jimmy Stewart and Margaret Sullavan work together and can't stand each other. Jimmy has fallen in love with a woman with whom he has been having a pen pal relationship, and they meet for the first time on Christmas Eve. On TCM next Tuesday. (This movie was the inspiration for You've Got Mail starring Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan.)

7. Miracle on 34th Street - A young Natalie Woods doesn't believe in Santa Claus until her Christmas wish comes true. Unfortunately, I have not found the original on this year, but a good 1994 remake is running on HBO.

8. The Bishop's Wife - Cary Grant is a guardian angel for a workaholic bishop. A real heartwarmer - on TCM tonight.

9. A Christmas Story - I liked this one a whole lot more before TNT ruined it for me by running it for 24 hours every year, but still a classic. It has become part of our family tradition.

10. Love Actually - I love love love this movie. Hugh Grant, Colin Firth, Alan Rickman and Liam Neeson all in the same movie is almost more than I can stand. Several love stories touch you in different ways. And if you can watch the montage during the ending credits without crying, you have no heart. Edited version tomorrow night on Oxygen, but to see the whole movie, you better rent the real thing. (Otherwise you miss the sweet story of a couple of porn movie stand-ins!!)

Ok - I have just wasted the first rainy afternoon of my long holiday vacation.

What great movies am I missing?? Tell me what else I should add to my dvr recordings!!


Shades of Gray said...

Be sure to add Elf with Will Ferrel. We watch it every year and laugh every time.

Cathy Santarsiero, "The Christmas Corgi" said...

Hi Janet...Try The Holiday with Kate Winslet, Cameron Diaz, Jack Black and Jude Law. The sets and scenery alone are worth it! I love the characters in this movie and have probably watched it 20 times as I find myself stopping at it when I flip channels!