Calista’s Cinema Conversations: The best movies for the holidays


Winter is a great season filled with snow, hot chocolate and warm sweaters, but winter also has a wide selection of movies to enjoy during the break. This week, as my last cinema conversation of the semester, we’ll be talking about great and entertaining holiday films.

Of course, we’ll start with “Elf.” No holiday movie list is complete without this Christmas comedy about an adopted elf named Buddy who travels to New York City in search of his father. This movie never gets old no matter how many times you watch it and became so popular that there is a musical based off the film.

Romantic films like “Love Actually” and “While You Were Sleeping” are not specific to the holidays, but they are set in December. These two films stand out against other December romance films because of the values and lessons learned. Both have to do with love, appreciation and happiness. Another bonus is that both can be found on Netflix.

Speaking of Netflix, this movie-watching platform has its own selection of holiday films. Popular Netflix originals from recent years include “A Christmas Inheritance” and both “A Christmas Kiss” films. Debatably the most popular Netflix original from last year is “A Christmas Prince” which sparked much conversation on social media. Because of this, Netflix created the sequel “A Christmas Prince: The Royal Wedding” released this past Friday. These movies received a lukewarm response in terms of story, but they are no doubt entertaining and fun.

Classic holiday films you would probably find on a television in the background on Christmas day are “It’s a Wonderful Life,” “Rudolf the Red-Nosed Reindeer,” “Frosty the Snowman,” “A Year Without a Santa Claus” and “A Christmas Story.” All have great stories that are enjoyable for children as well as adults. I have watched these films almost every year since I was little and I still get excited when they come on TV.

There are a few films, such as “The Nightmare Before Christmas,” “The Polar Express,” “The Grinch Who Stole Christmas” as well as the new animated film “The Grinch” which are all great options to mix in with the classic holiday films. Each has a musical aspect, such as the Whovians in “The Grinch Who Stole Christmas,” the train scene from “The Polar Express” and the songs sung by characters throughout “The Nightmare Before Christmas.”

Holiday movies are a unique, ever-growing genre of movies, so I could not possibly talk about all of them. There are still Hallmark films, more Netflix films and animated films that I could not fit into this week’s conversation, but that does not mean these films are bad. I am sure you have your own favorite films to enjoy during the holidays, so make some hot chocolate, wear a cozy sweater and watch some films to get you in the holiday spirit.

Calista Giroux is a campus correspondent for The Daily Campus. She can be reached via email at

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