A Top Ten Christmas movie list I did three years ago surfaced again on Facebook the other day, and I would like to amend it.
On that list, I included the Chuck Jones animated version of How The Grinch Stole Christmas, voiced by the great Boris Karloff. That was incorrect. Technically, that version of Grinch was a 30-minute cartoon – not a feature film or even a short. So, I’m making a change – in favor of that movie that’s a Christmas movie because it’s set at Christmas. No, not that one. The one before 45 years before that one.
Here’s the new list…
10. National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation – Pick it up anywhere and you’ll watch all the way to the end.
9. A Christmas Story – I treasure the smiles this movie brings to mind more and more every year.
8. Miracle On 34th Street – The 1994 version is good – but Maureen O’Hara, Natalie Wood, John Payne and Edmund Gwenn are perfect.
7.White Christmas – My parents fought World War II. This was their movie, and it’s helped me understand them and their time better.
6. Stalag 17 - Before Die Hard, a German prisoner of war camp packed with Americans far from home was the Christmas movie that wasn’t.
5. It’s A Wonderful Life – Frank Capra initially thought the film was a failure. It’s probably touched as many lives as any film ever made.
4. A Christmas Carol – I know many people prefer the Reginald Owen or Alastair Sim versions, but George C. Scott nails it for me.
3. Joyeux Noel - The Christmas Truce of 1914 begs the question: who is really your king, and what are his orders?
2. The Nativity Story – Simply wonderful. Oscar Isaac of Star Wars is the perfect Joseph, Keisha Castle-Hughes is the perfect Mary. Watch it.
1. Mr. Kreuger’s Christmas – 30-minutes long and produced for the Church of Latter Day Saints, this is Jimmy Stewart’s best Christmas movie.
And there you have it!