Advent Calendar – Christmas film edition

Photo by: Oleg Zaicev| Pexels

With November finally coming to a close, and Christmas fast approaching, many of you will begin watching Christmas films to get you in the holiday spirit.

To help you, here is an advent calendar with my top 24 Christmas films to watch with the family during this season.

December 1st – How the Grinch Stole Christmas (2000)

Christmas isn’t the same if you don’t watch this show. This is the live action of Dr. Seuss’ book of the same name. The show follows the story of the lonesome Grinch (Jim Carrey) whose goal is to ruin Christmas in the merry town of Whoville, with his dog, Max. However, his plans are thwarted by the naïve Cindy-Lou Who (Taylor Momsen).



December 2nd – Klaus (2019)

This animated film tells the story of the worst postman at the academy who is stationed to work in the Northern region. While there he comes across Santa Klaus and starts to help out.



December 3rd – Elf (2003)

If you wanna see Will Ferrell in yellow tights for 1hour and 37minutes, then Elf is the film for you. It follows the story of Buddy (Will Ferrell), who as a baby was mistakenly taken to the North Pole with Santa’s elves. Buddy is then raised as an elf but feels like he doesn’t fit in. As a result, he embarks on a solo expedition to New York, wearing his Elf costume, to find his real father.



December 4th –  Christmas with The Kranks (2004)

With their daughter not coming home for the holidays, Luther (Tim Allen) and Nora Krank (Jamie  Lee Curtis) decide to skip the Christmas tradition and escape to the Caribbean on a cruise. Luther and Nora become social rejects in their Christmas obsessed neighbourhood and are soon forced to change their plans, as their neighbours are dead-set on winning the “best decorated street” competition.



December 5th- The Santa Clause (1994)

Tim Allen again plays divorced dad Scott, who has custody of his son on Christmas eve. Accidentally, he kills a man in a Santa suit. Scott is then magically taken to the North Pole where an elf explains to him that he now has to become the next Santa Claus.



December 6th – Disney’s A Christmas Carol (2009)

Does Jim Carrey like Christmas? In this film he plays greedy Ebenezer Scrooge who thinks Christmas is a deception brought about to make people spend money unnecessarily. As a result, he scolds his nephew and clerk for enjoying the season. On Christmas eve, Scrooge is forced on a journey, by ghosts, to view his past, present and future, in hopes of making him merrier.



December 7th – The Polar Express (2004)

This exciting film stars Tom Hanks, who plays a conductor on the Polar Express. A young unbelieving boy is taken on an adventure of a lifetime to the North Pole. On this journey, he discovers himself and makes him believe in the wonders of life.



December 8th – Love Actually (2003)

If you want a little sprinkle of love, along with your Christmas spirit, then this rom-com is exactly what you need. This film explores nine different stories, with the main theme of love, during the Christmas season. The show has a cast that includes the likes of Hugh Grant, Emma Thompson, Keira Knightley and Colin Firth.



December 9th – Office Christmas Party (2016)

Jennifer Anniston, Jason Bateman and T.J. Miller come together in this Chrstmas comedy. Anniston plays a CEO who wants to close down her brother’s, played by Miller, branch of the company because he parties too much and seldom focuses on the company. In a last minute effort to save their jobs, his Chief Technical Officer (Bateman) gathers the other co-workers to hold an office Christmas party to impress a client to close a sale.



December 10th – Jingle All the Way (1996)

To make it up to his wife and son for constantly working, Howard Langston (Arnold Schwarzenegger) promises to the most popular toy of the season, Turbo Man. Howard waits until Christmas Eve to purchase the toy and finds that it’s sold out. With time running out, Howard tries everything to get his hands on one of the toys and through this journey, he re-learns the true meaning of Christmas.



December 11th – Bad Santa (2003)

You should probably put the kids to sleep before watching this one. This dark comedy follows the unlawful escapades of Willie T. Stokes (Billy Bob Thornton) and his partner (Tony Cox) in their yearly holiday con. However, plans go astray as Willie spirals and befriends a young boy who brings out a nicer side to him, making him realise he’s not a completely lost cause.



December 12th – Arthur Christmas (2011)

Even Santa makes mistakes. In this film, Santa’s youngest son Arthur (James McAvoy)  has the task of delivering a present before everyone wakes up, after Santa fails to deliver to one child out of millions.



December 13th – The Christmas Chronicles (2018)

Two siblings, Kate and Teddy Pierce, plan to catch Santa Claus (Kurt Russell) on Christmas eve while he delivers presents to their house. However, the plans go wrong and they are forced to team up with Santa Claus and his elves to save Christmas before time runs out.



December 13th – The Christmas Chronicles 2 (2020)

With the success of the first film, Netflix has created a follow up to the initial story. Now teenager Kate Pierce reunites with Santa Claus to prevent the eternal ending of Christmas.



December 14th – The Santa Clause 2 (2002)

This continuation shows Scott (Tim Allen), who has been Santa Claus for 8 years. However troubles face him when his son ends up on the naughty list and he is forced with the ultimatum of being married by Christmas eve, or cease being Santa Clause.



December 15th – The Night Before (2015)

Seth Rogen, Anthony Mackie and Joseph Gordan-Levitt play as three lifelong buddies who have gathered on Christmas eve to celebrate the holiday with a bang. This R-rated Christmas comedy shows the three friends on the hunt for the “Holy Grail of Christmas parties” for a night of debauchery, as one of them is soon to be a father. Watch the three friends enjoy their last big Christmas eve.



December 16th – A Christmas Prince (2017)

If every single romantic cliche was placed into a Christmas film then this is definitely it. A young aspiring journalist is sent abroad to a press conference to report on a prince, who is next in line to be King.



December 19th – The Santa Clause 3: The Escape Clause (2006)

In the third installment of this series, Scott (Tim Allen) has to invite his in-laws over to the North Pole to spend Christmas. The catch is, they don’t know he’s Santa Claus. While trying to hide his identity, Scott has to stop Jack Frost’s (Martin Short) villainous plan to take over the North Pole.



December 20th – The Princess Switch (2018)

Vanessa Hudgens takes two roles in this film as both a Duchess and a baker who are doppelgängers. One week before Christmas, their roles are switched and the doppelgängers fall in love with men in the other’s lives.



December 20th – The Princess Switch: Switched Again (2020)

Netflix’s second installment to The Princess switch continues in another role, as a third doppelganger is revealed. Baker Stacy, now princess, is forced to switch again to get the Duchess back together with her boyfriend, who is Satcy’s friend.



December 21st – Home Alone (1990)

The Christmas season can’t go by without watching this classic. Macaulay Culkin stars as 8 year old Kevin McCallister who is accidentally left home when his family goes abroad on a trip to Paris. Awakening to no family, Kevin realises that it’s up to him to protect his home from two con-men who plan to rob the residence.



December 22nd – Home Alone 2: Lost in New York (1992)

Kevin’s adventure continues when he loses sight of his father at the airport and instead gets on a flight to New York, while the rest of his family is headed to Florida. Alone, Kevin cons his way into the Plaza Hotel and discovers that the two con-men who tried to rob his house are not out and plan to rob an elderly man’s toy shop before Christmas. It’s up to Kevin to once more, prevent them from stealing.



December 23rd – Home Alone 3 (1997)

Young Alex Pruitt (Alex D. Linz) is home sick from school, when he is targeted by a group of criminals, who are trying to recover a top-secret computer chip that was placed in a toy car that Alex received from his elderly neighbour. However, Alex becomes aware of their schemes and readily plots his defense to protect both himself and his elderly neighbour.



December 24th – I’ll be Home for Christmas (1998)

College student Jake (Johnathan Taylor Thomas) is tempted to return home for Christmas, after his father promises that if he comes, he will receive a brand new Porsche. Jake’s college bullies ditches him in the middle of the desert in a Santa suit with no money or identification. Jake is now forced to embark on a cross-country ride to New York, in hopes of making it on time for Christmas.



These 24 recommended films will lead you right up to Christmas and will surely get you into the Christmas spirit. Embark on this journey through our Christmas film advent calendar.

Bonus films to watch on Christmas day include Mickey’s Once upon a Christmas (1999), Rise of the Guardians (2012), Holidate (2020) and Last Christmas (2019).


Words: Kenya Best | Subbing: Monika Laimaite

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