life, love, and maybe babies

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Let's go to the movies - holiday style

The holiday's are officially in full swing, and if you're like me, you desperately want to get into the spirit and stay there for the foreseeable future.

For me, Christmas spirit usually comes without me having to coax it. I naturally love this time of year and am one of those people who love Black Friday and pumpkin pie and Christmas music stations. But this year is a little different. I'm in Denver for my first fresh IVF Cycle, doing a great impression of a human pin cushion every night and morning with my 3-4 daily injections. I'm away from home and missing my friends and family and Hubs (who will get here later this week). To make matters less jolly, Hubs and I aren't putting up Christmas decorations this year. There's really no point, considering neither of us will be home to appreciate them, thus leaving the tree to be terrorized by our two cats.

No thanks.

The IVF cycle has my mind moving a million miles a minute with "what if's", and it's sort of cramping my holiday style. So, because I'm feeling more Grinch than Elf right now, I've decided to lift my spirits by making a wonderful list of the Christmas movies that will put the jingle in my Kringle. These movies are guaranteed to make you laugh, cry and shout "Merry Christmas to all! And to all a good night!"

So get some egg nog and spike it (if you aren't pregs yet), snuggle up with your BFF or Hubs or life partner or dog or cat, and let's get some Christmas Spirit up in this bee-otch!

Kim's Holiday Movie Must-Watches

Die Hard: Why not start Christmas off with a bang and lots of curse words? And a super hot Alan Rickman being all English and nasty? If you're into explosions, plot holes, bad 80's hair and Bruce Willis being a bad ass, this is the movie for you. Yippee-Ki Yay, mother f*cker.

Funny Farm: Okay, it isn't exactly a Christmas movie, per se. But damn if I don't love it. This won't be the last time Chevy Chase appears on this list, either. Two yuppies from New York move out to the country to experience the quiet life and get anything but. Can the holiday spirit of a small town keep them together? There are so many one liners in this movie, I can't even get started, because I just won't stop. All I'll say is, "Cue the deer."

Elf: I mean, duh. Will Ferrell was born to be a cheesy, sugar-addicted human raised by elves. Only Will can accuse a department store Santa of smelling like beef and cheese and get away with it. If nothing else, watch this movie for the fantastic chemistry between Will and Zoey Deschanel. Adorable.

9. Polar Express: I hesitate to put this on the list, mostly because the book is so much better. But Tom Hanks is my spirit animal and he pulls off several roles in this sugary-sweet cartoon like the Christmas pro he is. Watch this film when you feel like all of your Christmas spirit has left're guaranteed to get it back and "Believe."

8. The Holiday: For years people told me about this movie and I finally gave in last year and watched it. So glad I did. Cameron Diaz is spot on as a rich, Type-A Hollywood bitch, looking for an escape where no one knows her name. Kate Winslet is perfection as an unassuming, humble English gal, looking for a little adventure in the holiday season. The two strangers switch homes for Christmas and hilarity/romance/tears ensue. This movie makes me want to drink hot chocolate and marry Jude Law. What's more Christmas-y than that?

7. Serendipity: Calling all sappy, chick flick lovers! This one's a doozy. John Cusack and Kate Beckinsale play two perfectly gorgeous New Yorkers who meet by accident, fall in love in approximately 8 minutes, and then get ripped apart by circumstance. Can fate bring them back together? This movie will always be at the top of my faves list, mostly because Hubs and I have a similar fate-esque story, and I love to believe in holiday love miracles.

Also, Jeremy Piven as the comic relief is genius. 

Home Alone: Who doesn't love watching two bad guys get the pulp beat out of them by a kindergartner?  20+ years since this film came out and I will literally still watch it in the dead of summer when it's 102 degrees outside. I can't get enough of Katherine O'Hara as Kevin's neurotic mother, mowing down anyone who attempts to block her from getting home to the son she left behind on vacation.

On a sappy note, I love the theme of "I'm not afraid anymore." As adults, we're sometimes afraid to admit that things scare us. This movie always reminds me that most of the fear is in our heads and we've got to let those around us help when we're paralyzed by that fear. (Hello, infertile friends, I'm talking to you!)

A Christmas Story: Full disclosure: I used to watch this movie several times a year, until TNT ruined everything by playing it 24/7 on Christmas. I went on a 2-3 year strike and just recently decided to let it back into my holiday foray. I'm glad to have it back. After all, Ralphie is the kid in all of us - slightly nerdy but sensitive and sweet. And dammit, he just wants a BB gun. (For girls, that translates to an EZ Bake Oven. "You'll burn your hand off, kid.")

What I love most about this movie is, it's a glimpse into a different time. Seeing Christmas through the eyes of a generation that didn't have color TV's and iPads, or hell, even microwaves. It makes me long for a simpler time, where watching a dramatic event unfold happened on the playground rather than on The Real Housewives of Whatever. I love watching Ralphie gather his courage and beat the snot out of Skut Farcus and his yellow eyes. I love seeing Ralphie's mom cover for him when he almost shoots his eye out. This is the stuff of genius and I live for it.

The Family Stone: Boy meets girl. Boy brings girl home to meet his parents for the holiday. Easy, right? Wrong.

The Family Stone is amazing for a zillion reasons, but chief among them can be summed up in three words: Diane Freakin' Keaton. Diane stars as Sybil Stone, the bohemian-esque matriarch of her liberal, somewhat snobbish family, who are hell bent on making her son's new girlfriend (Sarah Jessica Parker) as uncomfortable as possible for the holidays. They succeed with gusto. 

This movie is truly a glimpse into the dysfunction that every family has, but will never admit. The over-arching theme is, "we all love each other anyway", and that always rings true for me around the holidays. My family drives me up the wall most of the time, but there is always love there, no matter our differences. This movie hammers that sentiment home with a mix of drama, tragedy and most importantly - laughter. 

Seriously, go watch it.

Christmas Vacation: Clark Griswold is the man. He wants to host the ultimate old-fashioned family Christmas, and he'll be damned if anyone gets in his way. 

I don't know many people who haven't seen this movie, but if you're one of them, rectify that mistake immediately. Watch as Clark endures a grumpy boss, asshole neighbors and one completely white-trash cousin in an effort to bring Christmas cheer to his less-than appreciative family. You'll laugh, you'll cry, you'll snort egg nog up your nose. And that's what Christmas is all about.

Scrooged: Bill Murray as a miserable grump executive who hates Christmas? Can that even work? You bet your sweet holiday nuts it can. Speaking of nuts, Murray gets punched in them a few times by the Ghost of Christmas Present in this holiday hoot with a heart.

Sleepless in Seattle/You've Got Mail: I mentioned earlier that Tom Hanks is my spirit animal. This couldn't be more true than in either of these movies. Tom is the perfect blend of sweetness, chivalry and sarcasm in both films. Meg Ryan is in her element as quirky, self-conscious and annoying. They belong together. Watch them as they figure it out.

Love Actually: I actually love the British. They pull every heart string I have out of its socket and then lovingly put it all back together again. This is the only holiday movie (except for maybe Christmas Vacation) that Hubs will voluntarily watch. He even asks to watch it every year! So, if you're going to make your macho macho man watch a holiday movie, break this one out.

Follow along as 8 love stories collide with hilarity, satire, loneliness, and passion. There's plenty of Christmas eye-candy in it too, including Hugh Grant (sex on a sugar-coated stick), Alan Rickman, Colin Firth and Liam Neeson. Oh, and that guy from "Walking Dead."

What else could you ask for Santa to bring you? (Well, one of those men naked in my living room would work fine.)


There you have it, my friends. My fave holiday movies to get jingled with. And yes, I know I left off some major holiday cartoons (aka The Grinch, Frosty the Snowman, Rudolph, Charlie Brown, etc.) But those are a given.

I would tell you to get to your local video rental store, but those are obsolete. So get to your Netflix or Amazon Prime or Apple TV or whatever piece of technology you use to watch movies, and snuggle in for a long day of amazing holiday masterpieces.

And seriously, don't forget the spiked egg nog. 

Happy Holidays!


Aislinn said...

The Christmas movies from my childhood are: It's A Wonderful Life, White Christmas (both my mother's favorites,) and A Christmas Carol, the black and white version (my father's favorite.) Funny enough, I don't think I've seen any of the movies on your list, but I have wanted to see Polar Express for a long time. Maybe I'll convince Hubby to curl up with me one night and watch it.

Kim said...

Not even "Love Actually?" Guuurl, you are missing out!

andthewindscreamsmary said...

Christmas Vacation FTW!

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