25 Best Christmas Movies of All Time + FREE Countdown Printable!

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It’s time to get cozy and watch the best Christmas movies ever!

elf and other christmas movies stacking in a row on store shelf

We’re sharing the best Christmas movies to watch this winter! 🎄

This season is all about family time and partaking in the best Christmas traditions. What better way to celebrate than grabbing some popcorn and watching classic Christmas movies all winter long?! 🍿To help you choose the title for your next movie night, here’s our roundup of 25 of the best Christmas movies!

From classics to kids’ movies and funny picks too, we’ve got something the whole family will enjoy. Plus, for those of you who are die-hard Christmas movie fans, we’ve even included a free Hip2Save 25 Days Christmas Movie Countdown so you have a holiday movie to watch every day of December!

Let’s start with some timeless holiday classic movies:

1. National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (1989)

two men talking at christmas party

Available at: Amazon | Target | Best Buy • Stream with Philo (try 7 days free!)

This Christmas, America’s most dedicated dad, Clark Griswold (played by Chevy Chase), is determined to stay at home to create “the most fun-filled old-fashioned family Christmas ever.” This Christmas comedy classic is a must-watch!

Released in 1989, rated PG-13

2. How the Grinch Stole Christmas (1966)

the grinch 1966

Available at: Amazon | Target | Best Buy | WalmartWatch for FREE on TNT

This classic Dr. Suess book-turned-movie is one everyone will love! Watch to see how the Grinch tried to steal Christmas from “Whoville”.

Released in 1966, rated G

3. A Christmas Story (1983)

two boys standing next to pole with tongue sticking on it

Available at: Amazon | Target | Best Buy | WalmartWatch on TNT (full viewing requires cable account)

In the 1940s, a young boy named Ralphie attempts to convince his parents, his teacher, and Santa that a Red Ryder BB gun really is the perfect Christmas gift. This charming Christmas classic is one you won’t want to miss!

Released in 1983, rated PG

4. White Christmas (1954)

white chrismas

Available at: Amazon | Target | Best Buy | WalmartStream with Netflix

Be sure to add this movie to your annual Christmas classics must-watch list! When a successful song-and-dance team becomes romantically involved with a sister act, they team up to save the failing Vermont inn of their former commanding general.

Released in 1954, rated G

5. Miracle on 34th Street (1947)

miracle-on-34th-street Christmas movie

Available at: Amazon | Target | Best Buy | Walmart

This is another movie from the classic Christmas capsule! When a nice old man who claims to be Santa Claus is institutionalized as insane, a young lawyer decides to defend him by arguing in court that he is the real thing.

Released in 1947, rated G

6. A Charlie Brown Christmas (1965)

a charlie brown christmas

Available at: Amazon | Target | Best Buy | Walmart

This is a true classic that everyone’s probably seen at least once. A Charlie Brown Christmas is a 1965 animated television special based on the comic strip Peanuts, by Charles M. Schulz. Charlie Brown tries to find the true meaning of Christmas.

Released in 1965, rated G

7. Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer (1964)

best christmas movies — rudolph the red nosed reindeer

Available at: Amazon | Target | Best Buy | Walmart

This charming classic Christmas movie featuring Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer is the most beloved special of all time! Packed with so many memorable songs and unforgettable characters, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer lights up all of our holiday hearts.

Released in 1964, rated G

8. It’s a Wonderful Life (1946)

its a wonderful life

Available at: Amazon | Target | Best Buy | WalmartStream with Amazon Prime (try 30 days free!)

The film stars James Stewart as George Bailey, a man who’s given up his dreams in order to help others, and whose imminent suicide on Christmas Eve brings about the intervention of his guardian angel, Clarence Odbody (Henry Travers). Clarence shows George all the lives he has touched and how different life in his community of Bedford Falls would be if he had never been born.

Released in 1946, rated PG

Pre-2000 Christmas film favorites:

9. Home Alone (1990)

boy standing in hallway with mouth open

Available at: Amazon | Target | Best Buy | WalmartStream with Disney+

Eight-year-old troublemaker Kevin McAllister must protect his house from a pair of burglars when he is accidentally left home alone by his family during Christmas vacation.

Released in 1990, rated PG

10. Home Alone 2 (1992)

home alone 2

Available at: Amazon | Target | Best Buy | WalmartStream with Disney+

One year after Kevin was left home alone and had to defeat a pair of bumbling burglars, he accidentally finds himself in New York City, and the same criminals are not far behind.

Released in 1992, rated PG

Hip Tip: Want to score both Home Alone movies for a better price? Check out this bundle deal at Best Buy.

11. Jack Frost (1998)

boy sitting outside with snowman

Available at: Amazon | Target | Best Buy | WalmartStream with HBO Max (try it for free!)

We recommend getting the tissue box for this Christmas movie! A year after the tragic death of Charlie’s dad, Jack, he plays a mournful tune on his father’s harmonica on Christmas Day. Much to his surprise, his dad is magically brought to life as a snowman in the front yard! Given a second chance, Charlie and Jack struggle to make up for the lost time.

Released in 1998, rated PG

12. The Santa Clause (1994)

the santa clause

Available at: Amazon | Target | Best Buy | WalmartStream with Disney+

Go on a journey with a divorced dad Scott (played by Tim Allen). After the real Santa falls off of his roof and disappears, Scott and his son are magically transported to the North Pole, where an elf explains that Scott must take Santa’s place before the next Christmas arrives. Watch this movie to find out if Scott really turns into Santa or if it was all a dream!

Released in 1994, rated PG

13. The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993)

best christmas movies — nightmare before christmas

Available at: Amazon | Target | Best Buy | WalmartStream with Disney+

Bored with the same old scare-and-scream routine, Pumpkin King Jack Skellington longs to spread the joy of Christmas. But his merry mission puts Santa in jeopardy and creates a nightmare for good little boys and girls everywhere!

Released in 1993, rated PG

Our favorite holiday movies from 2000 and beyond:

14. Elf (2003)

best christmas movies — elf

Available at: Amazon | Target | Best Buy | WalmartStream with Hulu (try 1 month free!)

This hilarious Christmas film tells the tale of a young orphan child, Buddy, who mistakenly crawls into Santa’s bag of gifts on Christmas Eve and is transported back to the North Pole and raised as an elf. Years later, Buddy learns he’s not really an elf and goes on a journey to New York City to find his true identity and family!

Released in 2003, rated PG

15. Christmas with the Kranks (2004)

christmas with the cranks

Available at: Amazon | TargetBest Buy | WalmartStream with Prime Video (try 30 days free!)

Alone for the Holidays? Invite some friends over and watch this hilarious Christmas comedy when the Kranks decide to skip Christmas altogether. That is until their daughter decides to unexpectedly come home, causing an uproar when they have to celebrate the holiday at the last minute.

Released in 2004, rated PG

16. The Polar Express (2004)

the polar express train outside with boy standing in snow

Available at: Amazon | Target | Best Buy | WalmartStream with Fubo

We love the classic Christmas book-turned-movie, The Polar Express. When a doubting young boy takes an extraordinary train ride to the North Pole, he embarks on a journey of self-discovery that shows him the wonder of life never fades for those who believe.

Released in 2004, rated G

17. Arthur Christmas (2011)

arthur christmas

Available at: Amazon | Target | Best Buy | Walmart

This is one your kids are sure to love! Santa’s clumsy son, Arthur, sets out on a mission with St. Nick’s father to give out a present they misplaced to a young girl. Watch this fun Christmas movie to see their very high-tech operation beneath the North Pole and to see if they get the mission accomplished in time!

Released in 2011, rated PG

18. How the Grinch Stole Christmas (2000)

best christmas movies — how the grinch stole christmas

Available at: Amazon | TargetBest Buy | Walmart

Jim Carrey stars in this more modern twist to the classic Dr. Seuss book. Watch this movie and how the Grinch tried to steal Christmas from “Whoville”.

Released in 2000, rated PG

And just for the adults, here are our favorite PG-13 & Rated R Christmas hits:

19. The Holiday (2006)

woman and man kissing outside

Available at: Amazon | Target | Best Buy • Stream with Prime (try 30 days free!)

This is the perfect comedy-drama-romance for Christmas! Two women troubled with their relationships at home swap houses in each other’s countries. Much to their surprise, they each meet a man with close ties to the respective homeowner and develop new romances amid their single-life vacations.

Released in 2006, rated PG-13

Hip Tip: Want more Christmas Rom-Coms? Check out Hallmark Channel’s Christmas movie schedule!

20. The Family Stone (2005)

the family stone

Available at: Amazon | Best Buy

An uptight, conservative businesswoman accompanies her boyfriend to his eccentric and outgoing family’s annual Christmas celebration and finds that she’s a fish out of water in their free-spirited way of life.

Released in 2005, rated PG-13

21. Love Actually (2003)

love actually christmas movie

Available at: Amazon | Target | Best BuyStream on Peacock (premium subscription)

This is the perfect movie to grab some wine and curl up with your significant other! Watch this movie about nine intertwined stories, and examine the complexities of the one emotion that connects us all: love.

Released in 2003, rated R

22. Die Hard (1988)

die hard film

Available at: Amazon | Target | Best Buy | Walmart

Who doesn’t love a low-key Christmas story? Haha! John McClane, an officer of the NYPD, tries to save his wife Holly Gennaro, and several others that were taken hostage by German terrorist Hans Gruber during a Christmas party at the Nakatomi Plaza in Los Angeles. This is one even your husband will be sure to love!

Released in 1988, rated R

23. Scrooged (1988)

best christmas movies — scrooged

Available at: Amazon | TargetWalmartStream with Prime (try 30 days free!)

In this take on Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol, Frank Cross (Bill Murry) a selfish, cynical television executive, is haunted by three spirits bearing lessons on Christmas Eve.

Released in 1988, rated PG-13

24. Four Christmases (2008)

four christmases film

Available at: Amazon | Target | Best Buy

When their plans for an exotic vacation fall apart, unmarried couple Brad and Kate must spend Christmas Day going to all the family get-togethers they were hoping to avoid. While Brad counts the hours until he can escape the onslaught of crazy relatives, Kate begins to wonder about her own choices and ponders whether her family members aren’t so crazy after all.

Released in 2008, rated PG-13

25. The Family Man (2000)

best christmas movies — the family man

Available at: Amazon | Target | Best Buy

Jack, a fast-lane investment broker offered the opportunity to see how the other half lives, wakes up to find that his sports car and girlfriend have become a mini-van and wife. We love this Christmas movie, and it proves that life really is about family and the little things! After watching this movie, I’m always left feeling extra thankful for so much!

Released in 2000, rated PG-13

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About the writer:

Sara is a self-taught blogger and photographer with 8+ years of experience having work featured in various building, travel, and fashion publications, most notably Bassett Furniture and Fossil.

Join The Discussion

Comments 87

  1. Gigi

    Noelle on Disney+ should totally be added to this list! It’s adorable and funny.

    • MrsG

      Yes! Such a good movie

    • Tricia

      Totally agree! It’s a must watch from now on – I love it!

  2. MrsG

    If you have not seen the family stone it is a MUST. My favorite Christmas movie.

    • Amber (Hip Sidekick)

      Thanks for the recommendation!

    • LLK

      Love, love, love The Family Stone!

  3. Evie

    One of the best movies “Scrooge” is not even mentioned. My favorite was with George C. Scott.
    I do not enjoy a lot of the modern so called classics.
    I suppose that is why Halmark is the best even as Netflix tries to make their own “Christmas Classics!”

  4. krystal

    I love all of these! Four Christmas is one of my husband and mine’s favorites!! Elf, nightmare before Christmas, home alone, and the grinch are favorites with the kiddos! Cant wait to start watching all of the Christmas movies! I’m really trying to wait till after thanksgiving! 🙃 I’m also looking forward to the second Christmas chronicles on Netflix! The first one was so good!

  5. Kimmyjo

    I love these movies also,but another one I love is Frosty The Snowman and it’s not on the list 🙁

    • Amber (Hip Sidekick)

      Oh yes! That’s a great one too!

    • Mandy

      I alwsys waited for this to air on tv! I can’t believe it missed the list!

  6. sara bonert

    Great list!!! My recent add to my favorite Christmas movies is Daddy’s Home 2!! I know it sounds weird, but it is hilarious!

  7. chester5

    If you want a classic 90’s romcom, While You Were Sleeping is the BEST!!!

    • GAmommyof4

      My FAVORITE movie!!! YES!!!

  8. Queenie81

    What about Jingle All the Way with Sinbad and Arnold S?

    • Lori


  9. Deb

    1951’s Scrooge with Alastair Sim

    • mmlovers90

      Best Christmas movie ever and this is the best version!! Love it!

  10. mmlovers90

    Bah humbug! Die Hard is not a Christmas movie! *And the song “My Favorite Things” is not a Christmas song either! :p

    • Cassie

      Agree 🙂

  11. Traci

    We always loved Santa Claus with John Lithgow growing up, I think it is from the 80s?

    • Jamie

      Yep, this is mine also, it’s a must watch yearly. Never on any lists and underrated!!!

    • Lauren

      I was going to add that too!! Our family’s yearly tradition 🙂

    • Melanie

      Yes!! It’s called “Santa Clause: the Movie”!! I bought of off Amazon 2 years ago and no one else ever knows what movie I’m talking about. I remember going to see it at the theater.

  12. CaseyB

    Those are all good! I’d like to add Fred Claus and Prancer to the list. Those are two of my favorites.

    • Melissa S

      Thumbs up on Fred Claus!

      • Lori


    • Lin

      Is Prancer the movie where a little girl finds a reindeer and hides it in the barn?

      • Katie

        Yes! I loved that movie when I was a kid!

      • Amy M.W.

        Prancer is such a great movie!

  13. Cassie

    While You Were Sleeping is a favorite of mine. The Ref is also a favorite but it has a LOT of language.

  14. ND13

    For adults – My favorite is the Ref- For those who love dark humor “bickering spouses annoy the cat burglar who takes them hostage in their Connecticut home”. .

  15. Melissa S

    More great Christmas movies to check out:
    Shop Around the Corner with Jimmy Stewart (You’ve Got Mail is a remake of this classic film.)
    A Christmas Carol: Jim Carrey animated version. (Beautifully done!) And the George C Scott version.
    Christmas in Connecticut with Barbara Stanwyck
    Bachelor Mother with Ginger Rogers & David Niven
    Funny Farm with Chevy Chase
    A Christmas Card

    • Diane

      I was just going to say where is Christmas in Connecticut!

      Holiday Affair with Robert Mitchum is good too.

  16. Lori

    We love Fred Claus and Krampus.

  17. TooManyKids

    Gremlins is missing from this list. And A Madea Christmas!

  18. Kat

    Where is Muppets Christmas Carol??? That’s my favorite Christmas movie

    • Amber (Hip Sidekick)

      Great suggestion, Kat! My family has loved that one too! 💕🙌

    • Beverly

      That’s our favorite too! We watch it every Christmas Eve.

    • Donica2013

      Same here. We watch it every year.

  19. JS

    Want some “A Christmas Story” trivia? Just say, “Alexa, enable ‘Don’t Shoot Your Eye Out!'” or click this link: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08KCTD3XZ Can you get an “A+” on Miss Shields’ quiz?

    • Amber (Hip Sidekick)

      Thanks for the fun suggestion, JS!

  20. Carrie Mae

    Planes, Trains & Automobile missed the list 😳

    • Ed

      Good movie but the time setting is around Thanksgiving.

  21. Katie

    SO many great movies on your list!! We still have little ones at home so Mickey’s Christmas Carol and Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer are also on our list!

  22. Snowflake1211

    Bad Santa??? I mean, if you’re afraid of cuss words probably not good to watch but my husband and I watch it every year and I still laugh! When my husband or I hurt ourselves the other always asks if they want some sandwiches lol We also watch Elf while we decorate the Christmas tree and we always squeeze in 1 of the Home Alones and a Christmas story. And then we change up the rest with 3 or 4 others throughout the season 🙂 Thanks for list, maybe this year we’ll try to watch them all since we’re stuck at home!

  23. Amy

    love actually?

  24. Brandi

    We just watched Klause on Netflix, it’s very cute! My top 5 are The Christmas Story, Christmas Vacation, Muppet Christmas Carol, Elf and Original Grinch. Also Emmet Otter’s Jugband Christmas for some childhood nostalgia!

    • Laura

      Emmet Otter’s Jugband Christmas is beautiful, so touching and sweet.

    • Shoppingfan

      💗💗💗 Emmett Otters Junk band Christmas! I grew up watching it year after year! Thanks for the reminder. I will surely watch it!

  25. Bonnie Davis

    Christmas Chronicles 1 & 2 which came out this year with Kurt Russell and Goldie Hawn.

  26. Natural _Niky

    Thank you guys. I watched the family stone for the first time.I was teary at the end.Currently watching The family man for the first time. Thanks for sharing.

    • Amber (Hip Sidekick)

      Aww, you’re welcome!

  27. Amy M.W.

    Bad Mom’s Christmas was great too!

  28. Marni

    “The Muppets Christmas Carol” available on Disney+ is our family’s favorite. Great music!! Thank you so much making this list and providing links to where the movies can be streamed!! What a gift!!

  29. heartmadecrafts@yahoo.com

    Did I miss it?? Wow!
    A Christmas Carol…
    Any of them…but we like the 3d version with Jim Carrey.

  30. heartmadecrafts@yahoo.com

    We like…
    Jingle All the WAY TOO!

    (For the adults…When Harry Met Sally…CHRISTMAS/NEW YEAR)

  31. Norm

    No love for Gremlins? 😀

  32. Audrey

    Let’s add This Christmas and Best Man Holiday for the adults; great movies with wonderful soundtracks. Also Deck the Halls.

    • Shoppingfan

      Absolutely Audrey! I’m with you 110%! These are my favorites & I watch them all year long!

  33. Leeleebusybee

    Love Christmas Movies, great list so far=)
    Does anyone remember the animated “Maxine’s Christmas Carol”? (The Grouchy maxine & her dog on Greeting cards) haven’t been able to find it but I enjoed it all those years ago & wish I could watch it again.
    Another good but older movie is Yes, Virginia.
    Merry Christmas to all!

  34. MeekoTreeko

    I agree with one of the earlier posters, Klaus on NETFLIX is sooooooo Good! One of my new favorites!

  35. paul

    Fun fact: “It’s A Wonderful Life” is a Christmas classic, now. But, it was a big ol’ flop, in it’s time (and for decades after). We can thank a failure to renew the copyright and every tv station loving free content, for it becoming a holiday classic.

  36. Nina Collins

    The Gift of Love:
    Marie Osmond plays a rich girl being raised by her uncle and aunt (June Lockhart). Her guardians encourage an arranged marriage to a nice but boring guy. Osmond does not want to spend the rest of her life as pampered wife who does nothing but attend society parties. She meets an immigrant, played by Timothy Bottoms, and they fall in love. However, her guardians disapprove of the match because Osmond’s late mother allegedly threw her life away by falling in love with a poor man. Bottoms has his own problems. He was only supposed to stay in America long enough to make a little money, then go back home and enter into an arranged marriage.

    This movie is based on an O. Henry story called, “The Gift of the Magi”. It’s a very sweet and romantic tale with a Christmas theme.

  37. Jervine87

    A Dog Named Christmas is my all time favorite movie (Christmas or not!) so heartwarming.

    • Lori

      Yes! Good one for the whole family.

  38. shpootsen45

    These are great! I’ve got to add White Christmas also!! I hadn’t watched it until a couple years ago and now I find myself wanting to watch it even in the middle of summer! It’s so good and incredibly family friendly. 🙂

  39. gatsby

    My favorite is a cartoon called “The Tangerine Bear.” It’s precious and the music is beautiful.

  40. Pamela

    “One Magical Christmas” with Mary Stembergen is one of my favorites. It is on Disney +.

  41. mrscollins77

    Great list! I would have to add The Preacher’s Wife with Whitney Houston and Denzel Washington! Our family loves it!

  42. Natalie

    We also watch “While You Were Sleeping” and Disney’s Christmas Carol and “It’s a Wonderful Life”

  43. DeeBeeTee

    Good list (my dad and I watch Die Hard each year to kick off the holiday season) 😀
    Found a new fave last year, “Last Christmas”; a different sort of romcom with Emilia Clarke. Can’t wait to watch it again this year.

  44. Crystal

    This is a great watch list some of my favorites are on this list like Elf, Home Alone 1&2, National Lampoon Christmas Vacation, The Santa Claus 1&2. I am here for it all🥰

  45. Anna

    Other black and white movie: Lemon Drop Kid w Bob Hope. It’s where the Silver Bells song comes from. Nice comedy.

  46. Campanita

    I’ll be home for Christmas is also funny. We like different Christmas movies, the only ones we can watch and enjoy together are Jingle All the Way and The Tangerine Bear.

  47. Hillary

    We watch The Christmas Story Musical Live every year since it first aired…stars Matthew Broderick and Maya Rudolph to name a few. It’s a musical take on the movie and we enjoy it so much! Since it was filmed live, there is one “flub” in it that we always look for – but the actors covered up great!

  48. Jen

    Great list! Good call including Die Hard. Definitely a Christmas movie!

  49. Icecream19

    Fatman for the adults!

  50. del

    Excellent list!

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