Do Christmas movies get you into the spirit of Christmas? Most years, I put on an old VHS tape my mom made for me when I was little. It has Frosty the Snowman, ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas, Charlie Brown Christmas, How the Grinch Stole Christmas, and Garfield’s Christmas Special. Watching the commercials is just as much fun as watching the cartoons. Something about watching a good Christmas movie or cartoon gets me pumped for the holidays. So, to marry two of my favorite topics, I’ll tell you what my favorite Christmas movies have taught me about relationships!
Perhaps one of the most beloved Christmas movies of all time is It’s a Wonderful Life. Whether you have an adventurous heart or not, you can’t help but feel sorry for poor George Bailey as he desperately attempts to leave his hometown of Bedford Falls and see the world. Based on one event after another, he is never able to go on all the quests he’d dreamed of as a child; but, he discovers that what he has gained through his faithfulness to his town, wife, family, and friends is of greater value than any wild exploit. At the end of the movie, George finds a copy of Tom Sawyer with the inscription from his guardian angel, Clarence, “Dear George: Remember no man is a failure who has friends. P.S. Thanks for the wings! Love, Clarence.” If you’ve never seen this movie, I’d encourage you to see it this year! If you haven’t seen it in a while, pull it out (or borrow or rent it) and watch it with family by the glow of your Christmas tree. This movie helps put my life into perspective and it reminds me of how important family and friends are to my life.
Who doesn’t love the movie, Elf? I don’t care who you are, you can’t stay in a bad mood after watching this movie! Not only is this movie clean and fun for the whole family, but it inspires me to let go and be a big kid once in a while. So watch Elf this Christmas and then reenact a scene from the movie with your sweetie. Just spend some time having fun and reliving the childlike wonder of Christmas together! There will be plenty of time to grow up and be serious in January!
A movie that is not as popular as the previous movies I’ve mentioned is a 1985 Disney movie, One Magic Christmas starring Mary Steenburgen. This was another movie Mom taped for me off television that I pop in most Christmases. Most of us have been through times in our lives when we’ve faced discouragement, so it wasn’t hard to feel what the main character was feeling in this film. It was hard for her to get up each morning and do the same dead end job when there seemed to be no hope for happier days. It wasn’t until she met a Christmas Angel who turned her world upside down where she was given the opportunity to see all the blessings she had in her life. Within twenty-four hours she thought she had lost her entire family, but through a series of miracles she was able to spend Christmas with her husband and kids, all completely healthy. Like most Christmas movies, this movie showed the importance of family and how you can get through almost anything in life as long as you have the love of your family and friends. Not only that, but this movie showed the power we have within ourselves to choose happiness and joy when life is throwing us curveballs. This movie and It’s a Wonderful Life have a lot of similarities.
While You Were Sleeping is one of my favorite movies – Christmas or otherwise! I adore Sandra Bullock’s acting abilities in this movie. First and foremost, this movie taught me that no matter how much you think you know who the perfect man is for you, it could turn out that his brother is a much better fit! ~smile~ Who among us (especially the ladies) has not had a list, whether mental or physical, of all the traits he or she wants in a spouse? How many times are we swept off our feet by someone who does not “make the list,” but who possesses what we really need in a mate? If you need a good laugh, go get this movie today! It’s been out long enough now that you can probably find it for $5 at your local big box store. There are a couple of mild off-color situations, but in my opinion they are extremely underplayed. If I were a parent, I’d probably let my children watch it.
Last but not least, I love How The Grinch Stole Christmas! I know I’ve struggled with grinchly attitudes, though generally not at Christmas. How sad it would be to hate Christmas! It always seemed to me that the Grinch hated Christmas because he was lonely. Christmas is a time of celebrating and being around others we love. I think if the Grinch had known the kind of love we all need, he would never have hated Christmas. However, after realizing that the Whos down in Whoville had a love of Christmas that went deeper than gifts and decorations, his heart melted, (and grew three sizes that day!) and he returned their gifts, decorations, and food. As the beloved Dr. Seuss movie ends, you see the Grinch sitting with the Whos enjoying a beautiful feast. Do you know someone who is grinchly, or without loved ones this season? Perhaps you could help cure his or her grinchliness by opening your home. Reach out to those who need some Christmas cheer. Share the good news of the gospel with them, and let them be a part of your family celebration. Love is meant to be given away!
We hope this week of Christmas is a special time of fun and memories for you and your sweetheart! One of Eric’s Christmas traditions is to go out and see a theater movie every Christmas night. Perhaps you can begin a tradition of watching a new (or beloved old) Christmas movie together each holiday season!
Which movies are your favorite Christmas movies and why?