These are a few popular Hollywood films interspersed with two brilliant French films that will evoke the celebratory mood that is synonymous with Christmas.
Christmas is a holiday and if you aren’t carrying work home or you don’t have elaborate celebratory plans, you can always watch a film.
Bad Santa: As the name suggests, the Santa in this movie is Billy Bob Thornton who is a Department Store Santa who is one Santa that no kid should be introduced to. While he looks benign in his Santa costume, he actually is a thief who always manages a robbery every year on Christmas. Once the store owners head homer after the day’s business, Thornton aka Willie T. Stokes along with his partner Marcus, raid the store safe. Do watch it to see how the tables turn.
A Christmas Tale: Here is some French, art-house cinema for those who want it. In this film, Arnaud Desplechin captures a tale that highlights the strained relationship shared by members of the Vuillard family. When all the children gather at their parents house for Christmas they realize that Junon Vuillard is suffering from leukemia; only one person can help and that is Henri, the black sheep of the family. Go ahead and watch the film, but be warned; you will never have wanted it to end.
It’s a Wonderful Life: Here is an old black and white classic that remains at the top of everyone’s list; this post world war II film was made by the great Frank Capra and features James Stewart, one of the best actors of Hollywood back then. Besides, the story itself is adapted from a short-story written by Philip Van Doren Stern, which would be a lovely read too. Dona Reed, who plays the female lead, is another temptation that is worth fulfilling.
The Umbrellas of Cherbourg: During times of celebration, a musical is one of the best ways to bring home the excitement. Jacques Demy released one of his best in 1964, called The Umbrellas of Cherbourg. The music was written by Michel Legrand and the film dialogue is all sung, even the most casual conversations are recitative.
Jingle All the Way: No one could have missed this film; so, a second viewing is all that I can recommend. Starring Arnold Schwarzenegger, this film takes us on the adventure made by him in trying to get his son a Turbo-man action figure for Christmas.