About a week ago I put together a Christmas movies poll, partially because I was curious, and partially because my husband and I are hosting Christmas movies at a café here. Wow, did I forget a TON of them! Slightly later, I put up a revised poll, and I still forgot a ton. Friends in real life and online suggested their favorites, which I’m listing here. Some I’ve seen…
National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation – I think you all know this one.
How The Grinch Stole Christmas – How could I forget this?
Going My Way – Bing Crosby’s Fr. Chuck O’Malley could give Spencer Tracy’s Fr. Flanagan a run for his money as the coolest priest ever.
The Bells of St. Mary’s – Fr. O’Malley is back, in the top-grossing film of 1945, clashing with Sr. Benedict (Ingrid Bergman). Will he convince her to lighten up? Is the Pope Catholic?
…and some I haven’t:
Young At Heart (1955) – “A cynical songwriter upsets the lives of three musical sisters.” With Frank Sinatra and Doris Day.
A Town Without Christmas – A “little boy…writes that he wishes to leave this world so he will no longer be a burden to his divorcing parents, a race begins to find him before he harms himself.” [IMDB]
The Holly and The Ivy – Ralph Richardson and Celia Johnson star in this “heartwarming tale of an English minister and his family reunited at Christmas time. Their story includes a remembrance of their WWII trials.”
We’re No Angels (1955) – “After escaping Devil’s Island, three offbeat prisoners [Bogie, Aldo Ray and Peter Ustinov] help a goodhearted family outwit a scheming relative.”
Holiday Inn (1942) – “The A[staire], B[erlin], C[rosby] of American musical comedy.”
I also have to mention Christmas Under Fire, a 10-minute film from 1940, which I’d never seen before, brought to my attention by @Filmatelist. I say with not one iota of irony: this is why the Allies won the war.
And I am sure there are others. I realize that this poll is deeply flawed. At the same time, I doubt any other Christmas film can top It’s A Wonderful Life, with a healthy 19 votes.
The Top 10 was as follows:
|It’s A Wonderful Life||19|
|The Thin Man||10|
|Christmas In Connecticut||9|
|Miracle On 34th Street||7|
|A Christmas Carol (any version)||7|
I was happy to see my two favorites, Scrooged and Christmas in Connecticut make the Top 10, I wasn’t really surprised to see Wonderful Life on the top of the heap. There’s many good reasons why. But that it’s a whole other post.
EDIT: I forgot to say, someone suggested that I should have specified which Miracle on 34th Street I was talking about in the original poll. I completely forgot there was a remake. I love the late John Hughes, but for me, the 1947 version is really the only one.