Top 10 Christmas films
By: Nizar Ahmed
Mon, Dec. 25, 2017
CAIRO – 25 December 2017: It’s the holiday season, so Egypt Today lists 10 beloved Christmas films to help get you into the festive mood.
“Tokyo Godfathers” (2003)
From late Japanese master of animation Satoshi Kon, “Tokyo Godfathers” is a touching, hilarious and dramatic animated drama about the warm bond between those cast out by society. A transsexual, a runaway girl and an alcoholic bum come across a baby in the trash on Christmas Eve and find themselves caught up in a wild adventure across Tokyo as they try to get her back home, growing closer to each other along the way.
“A Muppets Christmas Carol” (1992)
The first Muppet film completed after the death of creator Jim Henson, director Brian Henson ensures their holiday comeback is as heartwarming and tragic as it is funny. A retelling of Charles Dickens’s classic story “A Christmas Carol”, Michael Caine stars as the cruel Ebenezer Scrooge, who learns the meaning of kindness through the Muppets after his encounter with the ghosts of Christmas past, present and future.
“Miracle on 34th Street” (1947)
A classic holiday film that exemplifies the spirit of the season from director George Seaton, “Miracle on 34th Street” stars Maureen O'Hara, Gene Lockhart, Edmund Gwen and John Payne. The story follows a kindly old man named Kris Kringle, who takes over for a the drunken actor playing Santa at Macy's Department Store’s Thanksgiving Day Parade and becomes wildly popular with both adults and children alike, thanks to his joyful holiday spirit.
However, when Kris states that he really is Santa Claus, he’s locked up in a mental institution, leaving it up to young lawyer Fred Gaily to step up and defend Kris in the court case, aiming to prove he is the real deal.
“It's a Wonderful Life” (1946)
A wonderful film for a wonderful holiday from director Frank Capra adapts Philip Van Doren Stern's short story “The Greatest Gift” into one of Hollywood’s finest holiday films. James Stewart stars as George Bailey, a businessman who fears that he has failed his town and family, feeling they are all better off if he died. His guardian angel, Clarence (Henry Travers), disagrees and shows George what life would be like if he had never been born, proving the valuable role we all play, no matter how much we feel we don’t matter.
“Home Alone” (1990)
An undeniable holiday classic, “Home Alone” manages to appeal to those without very festive hearts thanks to its hilarious antics and brutal slapstick comedy. When the McCallister family sets off for their Christmas vacation in Paris, they happen to forget one thing: their eight-year-old son Kevin (Macaulay Culkin), who is home alone for Christmas.
Yet Kevin cannot enjoy the house to himself in peace for long. A pair of burglars, Harry and Marv (Joe Pesci and Daniel Stern), decides to break in. However, as the night ends, they find themselves getting into much more than they bargained for, as Kevin defends his home in rather ingeniously cruel ways.
“The Nightmare Before Christmas” (1993)
Is it a Christmas film or a Halloween film? Despite the debate, “The Nightmare Before Christmas” brings across the Christmas mood with a ghoulish twist, courtesy of director Henry Selick and writer Tim Burton. When Jack Skellington, the king of Halloween Town, grows bored with all the darkness of his life and takes a trip to Christmas Town, he becomes so enamored with the holiday that he tries to spread some festive cheer of his own, with disastrous results.
“Die Hard” (1988)
One would think an action film starring Bruce Willis would not exactly be fit for Christmas, yet director John McTiernan manages to do just that. NYPD officer John McClane (Bruce Willis) races against time to save his wife and other hostages from a German terrorist (Alan Rickman), who has them locked up in a Los Angeles tower during a Christmas party, putting a rather action-packed twist on the holidays.
“The Bishop's Wife” (1947)
Henry Koster tells this heartwarming tale of Henry Brougham (David Niven), a young bishop who is struggling to raise the funds to build a new cathedral. His new duties also strain the relationship with his wife, Julia (Loretta Young), and so Henry prays that all his problems will be solved. The solution comes in the form of Dudley (Cary Grant), a guardian angel appointed not only to help build the cathedral, but also bring love back into their lives.
This short animated film from Dianne Jackson and Jimmy T. Murakami is just the sort of thing to warm your hearts during the cold winter months. Set on Christmas Eve, a young English boy is taken on a magical adventure to meet Santa Claus after the snowman he built comes to life.
“Holiday Inn” (1942)
Featuring the talents of Bing Crosby, considered “the voice of Christmas”, Mark Sandrich puts him against Fred Astaire to win the efforts of a lovely lady. Crosby portrays Jim Hardy, a crooner who falls in love with Linda Mason (Marjorie Reynolds), but finds that she also has an interest in Ted Hanover (Astaire), his old dancing partner who stole away his old girlfriend before. Jim currently runs an inn only open during the holidays, which serves as the backdrop for their efforts to win Linda over. This film is notable for having introduced “White Christmas”, one of Crosby’s most famous songs.