It’s the most won-der-ful time of the yeeeeear!
It’s December 1st and that means it’s (finally) socially acceptable to deck the halls, crank up the carols and embrace all things festive!
I love this time of year and it’s fantastic to see London lit up with Christmas lights and holiday cheer.
My favourite way to get in the Christmas spirit though? Curling up on the couch with comfort food in hand and holiday classics on the TV. Year after year I come back to the same movies again and again because I know they’re going to warm my heart and give me the festive feeling I’m looking for.
Here’s what I’ll be watching under the mistletoe!
- The Holiday – I adore this movie. Cameron Diaz and Kate Winslet are perfection and the settings are holiday heaven – especially Kate’s cosy little cottage in the English countryside. I’ve been to Shere (where those scenes were shot) and it as charming as you’d hope…though don’t go expecting to find Kate’s house as they built it especially for the film! I fully acknowledge that certain elements of this holiday romance are a bit far-fetched (Kate and Jack Black? Cameron and Jude realising it won’t ever work but love triumphing and the question of logistics being entirely left at the wayside?…but I digress) The costumes, the setting and these two amazing female leads make this a movie I could watch on an endless loop at this time of year.
- Love Actually – I. Love. This. Movie! I laugh, I cry, I cringe (‘What are you going to do next? Dip it in yogurt?!’) and by the time the end credits roll I’m already eager to start all over again. With a fantastic soundtrack and scenes that have me yelling ‘I’ve been there!’ repeatedly at the TV (sorry, G!) it’s a love letter to my beloved Christmas and London all wrapped into one beautiful, captivating package.
- White Christmas – It’s a Christmas tradition in my family to roll away from the dinner table on Christmas Eve (full of my mom’s home-made lasagna and garlic bread) and settle in front of the roaring fire my dad has built to watch White Christmas as a family. It’s the very definition of a classic and I know exactly what to expect when watching it – the way my mom will tap her toes along to the music, the way my dad and my sister will scramble for the remote to fast forward through the ‘Choreography’ scene (if you’ve seen it you’ll understand – WHY is it there?!) and the feeling of complete contentment of being surrounded by family as the wind howls outside.
- The Santa Clause – This one is all about the nostalgia! From the fabulous 90s fashions to the memories it stirs of seeing it for the first time in a real movie theatre. It’s Tim Allen at his comedic best and a decadent, delightful Christmas treat.
- National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation – This one is pure shame as I’m fairly certain I can recite the movie from start to finish verbatim. There’s definitely content in here that isn’t exactly family friendly but for some reason it became a tradition to watch it every year and now it seems odd not to! Though I’m not a big fan of the National Lampoon series I do enjoy Chevy Chase in this one and I’ll never not laugh at the squirrel in the tree or the joy on Clarke’s face when the house finally lights up.
- Sleepless in Seattle – Though not entirely a Christmas movie there are enough festive elements and enough of a tradition of watching it at Christmas for me to add it to this list. Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan together are sublime and this story of finding love in unexpected places will have you fighting off tears. If you love this I’d highly recommend doing a double feature with You’ve Got Mail which sees Hanks and Ryan reunited (with a touch of Christmas!) and proves that some dynamics are really for the ages.
- Fred Clause – A newer addition to the Christmas list this story of the forgotten Clause (Santa’s brother Fred) is made entirely by Vince Vaughn who is totally in his element as the delinquent brother of the most famous man on earth. With Kevin Spacey as the evil villain set on bringing Santa’s whole operation down you know you’re in for a treat!
I’d love to hear your favourite holiday movies and to add to my list this year so please do share recommendations in the comments below!