With a little help from the Tribeca staff, we've pulled together some must-see movies for your holiday break with the family. Please chime in with your own suggestions in the comments below.
Both of these films are guaranteed to get you and your family in the Christmas spirit! Now, here are some Tribeca staff recommendations:
Dir. Bob Clark, 1983
There is no film that better captures the feeling of being a kid on Christmas (or even being a kid in general), and I always look forward to Christmas Day, when TBS plays it for 24 hours. The movie has heart, nostalgia, hilarity, and every line is a classic. Simply a perfect movie.
— Aaron Levine
What kid doesn't want a BB gun under his Christmas Tree?
— Diane Fosten
Dir. Jeremiah S. Chechik, 1989
There's nothing like Christmas with the Griswolds.
Dir. John McTiernan, 1988
"Ho, Ho, Ho... now I have a machine gun." Any film that counts that as one of its lines of dialogue automatically shoots it to the top of my Xmas list. This is not exactly the first film that most people think of when it comes to Christmas movies, but at the heart of this action extravaganza is a man who just wants to be with his wife for the holidays. You've got to love that.
— Loren Hammonds
Die Hard? A Christmas movie? Oh yes. It’s only the best Christmas movie ever. There’s laughing, there’s crying, and in the end, peace on earth.
— Andy Rozal
Dir. Chris Columbus, 1990
Who doesn't love Home Alone?
Dir. Frank Capra, 1946
It's a Wonderful Life never fails to portray the true meaning of the season.
— Diane Fosten
Dir. Richard Curtis, 2003
I'm a sucker for Love Actually around Christmas time.
— Colleen Hammond
Dir. Ted Demme, 1994
The Ref is my pick for an unconventional Christmas classic. Kevin Spacey and Judy Davis are pitch-perfect as a dysfunctional married couple who are held hostage by a jewel thief (the great Denis Leary) looking for a way out of town. Soon, the trio is forced to band together as the couples' delinquent son and nasty relatives come for their annual Christmas dinner and chaos ensues as they viciously rip into each other. Complete with hilarious performances, rapid-paced dialogue and endlessly quotable lines, The Ref is a holiday must-see! "Slipper Socks, medium."
Dir. Mitchell Leisen, 1940
Written by Preston Sturges, Remember the Night is a forgotten holiday treasure! When a lawyer (Fred MacMurray) decides to postpone his shoplifting case due to those hard-to-get Christmastime convictions, he takes pity on the pretty defendant (Barbara Stanwyck) and takes her home for the holidays. Once the pair get to the lawyer's quaint Indiana town with all the Christmas trimmings, they can't help but fall in love. Fun fact: this is the first of four on-screen pairings for Barbara Stanwyck and Fred MacMurray!
Dir. Richard Donner, 1988
An underrated classic! "It's Christmas Eve! It's the one night of the year when we all act a little nicer, we... we smile a little easier, we... w-w-we cheer a little more. For a couple of hours out of the whole year, we are the people that we always hoped we would be!"
Dir. Peter Chelsom, 2001
Call me a sap, but I think this film brings out the hopeless romantic in all of us (well, okay, probably only in women). While Christmas is not central to the plot, a lot of the scenes highlight the hustle and bustle of holiday season in NYC. It’s a sweet, funny, “curl up on the couch with a hot-cocoa” movie, and additionally, it’s worth watching to witness John Corbett’s quirky performance as “new age” musician Lars Hammond (see the music video Mystic Surrender here).
— Jessie Callahan
Dir. Jon Turteltaub, 1995
Complete and utter brain twinkie. Overly sentimental, occasionally cheesy, but funny. It does hit close to home for someone with a very small family (like me!).
— Andy Rozal
Don't forget: Suggest your own Christmas classics in the comments below!