holidaysWhether you watch them with a big family or go solo, holiday movies leave many of us with warm, fuzzy feelings that stretch into the New Year. Here’s some heartfelt picks from Fela (D), if you’re looking for something to stir the warm cocoa in your heart this season!

D writes:

The Shop Around the Corner (1940) and It’s a Wonderful Life (1946), two of James Stewart’s Christmas fare, are among my favorites. I tend to prefer Jimmy’s romantic comedies, but every so often I will watch the tearful classic that seems to be on everyone’s top three holiday movies list.

Two Bing Crosby classics: Holiday Inn (1942) with Fred Estaire and Marjorie Reynolds; and White Christmas (1954) with Danny Kaye, Rosemary Clooney, and Vera-Ellen, both with Bing’s classic song White Christmas. These two musicals have so many delightful song and dance numbers you just can’t go wrong.

Christmas in Connecticut (1945) with Barbara Stanwyck and Dennis Morgan. I’m not a huge Stanwyck fan, but this romantic comedy is a gem when it comes to Christmas movies. You can’t help but feel good watching this one.

Miracle on 34th Street (1947) with Edmund Gwenn as Kris Kringle, Maureen O’Hara, John Payne and the adorable, Susan, played by Natalie Wood. This movie tops many lists, it’s an all-around classic Christmas film for everyone. Me included.

The Bishop’s Wife (1947) with Cary Grant as the Angel and David Niven as the Bishop, and Loretta Young as Grant’s wife.  Originally cast to play the Bishop, Cary Grant’s and David Niven’s parts were switched in this funny, romantic comedy. Anything with Cary Grant or David Niven is a favorite of mine, so this one is doubly so.

Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol, is a heartwarming classic whichever version you watch. I find the classic 1951 version with Alastair Sim as Ebenezer Scrooge one of the best. Who doesn’t tear up when Tiny Tim cries, “God bless us, every one!”

Donovan’s Reef (1963) with John Wayne, Lee Marvin and Elizabeth Allen isn’t necessarily a Christmas movie. But Christmas is celebrated in the movie and it was filmed on the beautiful Island of Kauai. One of the most wonderful scenes in the movie is when the small church puts on a Christmas play telling of the three wise men bringing their gifts to the baby Jesus. The story is a blend of the different cultures and makes for a delightful combination for celebrating the season. This makes it one of my favorite Christmas movies, and enjoying The Duke and Lee Marvin too makes it an all-time favorite of any genre.

The Long Kiss Goodnight (1996) with Geena Davis and Samuel Jackson is a mix of action-adventure and holiday cheer, sort-of. This action-packed adventure is a twist of plain ol’ fun, so why not include it in the mix to shake up the traditional Christmas marathon?

Whatever your taste in holiday flicks, take a moment to relax and enjoy some of Hollywood’s best this season. It’s my tradition, and I am looking forward to a movie marathon with my furry kids on Christmas Day.

Merry Christmas everyone.