Best Christmas movies: Merry Christmas Eve! For those that celebrate Christmas, this holiday season is filled with family, friends, and of course, presents. Many celebrate the season by eating lots of food, exchanging gifts, and for many it’s traditional to watch their favorite Christmas movies. Some of the best Christmas movies are currently available on various popular streaming services.
Let’s take a look at the 8 best Christmas movies you can stream on those major services, in no particular order.
Best Christmas movies on streaming services:
Editor’s note: We’ll be updating this list of the best Christmas movies on a regular basis. Looking for something a little less conventional? Check out our list of the best non-cheesy Christmas movies!
Writer John Hughes and director Chris Columbus released Home Alone in 1990. It was a massive hit and turned its lead actor, Macaulay Culkin, into a huge star overnight. It’s easy to see why. Culkin’s portrayal of 8-year old Kevin McCallister is comedy gold. He’s left at home while his family mistakenly leaves him behind when they go to Paris for Christmas. Kevin quickly enjoys the new freedom of being home alone, but soon has to defend his house against the threat of the “Wet Bandits.” Joe Pesci and Daniel Stern match Culkin in comedy acting and timing, as they fall victim to his traps at home. After all this time, the movie still holds up. You can stream the movie now on Disney Plus.
Miracle on 34th Street
The classic 1947 version of this holiday tale deserves to be in our list of the best Disney Plus Christmas movies. Macy’s department store in New York City, like many stores, has its own Santa Claus for Christmas. However, the man who has Macy’s Santa gig, Kris Kringle (played by Edmund Gwenn), insists that he’s the real deal. It all comes together in a now-famous court scene, where we find out whether or not Santa Claus is real. Be prepared with some tissues. It’s now available on Disney Plus.
The Christmas Chronicles
One of Netflix’s biggest original movies of 2018 was this Christmas film, which stars Kurt Russel as Santa Claus himself. However, due to the antics of a couple of kids, Santa finds himself stranded in Chicago on Christmas Eve, and there’s a race against time to get him back together with his sleigh and reindeer. If he doesn’t complete his yearly gift giving before Christmas Eve ends, the world will lose that great holiday spirit. Russel’s depiction of Santa as a hip grandpa is perfect for him, and the movie itself is fun to watch with your family and friends.
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What can you say about White Christmas that others haven’t said already? Bing Crosby and Danny Kaye play two former WWII soldiers who become successful music producers. They tag along with two singers played by Rosemary Clooney and Vera-Ellen to a holiday inn in Vermont, only to discover it’s owned by Crosby and Kaye’s former military commander. The inn is in danger of shutting down due to a lack of snow and guests. The foursome try their best to stage a musical at the inn to save it. The storyline doesn’t matter much; what matters are the Irving Berlin songs that are featured in White Christmas and sung by the cast, including the title tune (which actually debuted in an earlier movie, Holiday Inn).
You can watch this movie now on Netflix
This 2003 movie became an instant Christmas movie hit. Will Ferrell plays Buddy, a human who was orphaned and raised by an elf family at the North Pole. However, Buddy is now grown up and wants to find his human family. He heads to the real world and encounters his father, played by James Cann. Can Buddy get used to living the human life, or will he never be able to fit into normal society? Find out as you can stream the movie now on Starz.
A Christmas Carol (1938)
There have been tons of movie adaptions of Charles Dickins’s classic holiday tale over the decades. However, we think the 1938 version might still be the best. Reginald Owen plays the evil miser Ebenezer Scrooge in a very faithful adaptation of the tale. Scrooge is mean to pretty much everyone, and all he cares about his keeping is money. However, the night of Christmas Eve, he’s visited by three ghosts who show him how his actions have affected his past and his present and could affect his future. It’s an old-fashioned movie, with an old tale to tell, but that may be why we like it. It’s now available to stream on HBO Max.
It’s a Wonderful Life
There’s not much that needs to be said about this movie. Released in 1946 and directed by Frank Capra, it’s hard to believe It’s A Wonderful Life wasn’t a huge box office hit. It only began to become popular once local TV stations began rerunning the film constantly in the 1970s. Beyond the Christmas themes and setting, this movie is also all about how one person can affect the lives of so many other people. Jimmy Stewart’s portrayal of George Bailey is truthful to its core. George is a humble man who always looks out for others in the town of Bedford Falls. However, a fateful Christmas Eve puts George over the edge, and it’s up to a helpful angel named Clarence to show him that his life is truly wonderful.
Oh, and let’s not forget one of the best movie villains of all time. Lionel Barrymore is perfect as George Bailey’s opposite, the super-rich Henry Potter who tries his best to take down George.
You can watch the classic black and white version of this film but Amazon Prime also has a colorized version to stream as well.
That’s a look at the best Christmas movies you can stream on various services. Looking for more movies? Here’s some other lists worth checking out: