Each holiday season we seem to see less and less movies coming out in the fall in the holiday movie genre. Last year was a victim with very little being released on the big screen. Now in terms of the little screen, well that’s another story. Thankfully last year I augmented the list for the first time by adding TV shows. 2018 is just proof how the realm of holiday movies is slowly dying but the advent or rise of Netflix, there is a new chapter for movies being released via streaming services. With that said, lets delve into the movie first and then just bask in all of the TV/Streaming Movies.
The first movie I bought when it came out because I would have paid for a movie theater ticket to see it. The Man Who Invented Christmas. First and foremost any movie that has Miriam Margolyes is a 5 star movie at the get-go. This movie came out last holiday season and sadly to bleak fan-fare. The movie only made about $8m at the box-office worldwide. But let’s face it, the most epic holiday movies rarely do well at the box-office. This docu-drama about the birth of A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens is jam packed with powerful actors and actresses. From greats like Simon Callow & Christopher Plummer, to the young pups like Downton Abbey’s Dan Stevens. I’ve actually added this movie to my LIST TO WATCH this season.
A Bad Moms Christmas is the only the holiday hit from last season. Droves of my mom friends scheduled night outs to see this movie and I was even invited, sadly I think I was sick. I am always sick during the holidays, currently I am fighting a sinus problem. Fun! Bad Moms wisas hilarious and somewhat original. I have already added this Lobster Santa Hats movie to my list this year. The movie is really a sequel to the first Bad Moms. The story continues with three moms finding themselves through various stages of relationships. All of the regulars are back but of course the grandma’s come to town for the holidays. Of course with a cast that started with Kunis, Hahn and Bell, you gotta go BIG! Sarandon floats along but she’s outshined by Cheryl Hines, with her all kinds of crazy eyes. As well as the crowning glory of the is the amazingly talented Christina Baranski. Seriously, Baranski killed it in this movie. Can I just point to the fact that Christine Baranski redecorated her daughters house in the these of the 12 days of Christmas. Oh and let’s not forget Josh Hartley practically NAKED.
Then there is Daddy’s Home 2 which is the poor man’s version of Bad Moms Christmas. Bottom line the movie has its moments thanks to John Lithgow. The rest of the cast is just bad, bad, bad and did I mention, BAD acting. Should this movie have even been made? Some may argue NO! I agree 100%. Daddy’s Home is so weak in the women department.
Now this next movie is up for debate whether it’s a movie or tv movie….
Christmas Chronicles was a December release for Netflix, that movie is great for kids. Staring Kurt Russell as a very convincing Santa. I hate that I am saying that because I used to have such a crush on him, just reminds me we are all getting old. I digress! The kids were glued to the TV when they watched this last week. They even wanted to watch it one more time. The real treat was the ending of the movie with the appearence of Mrs. Claus, I won’t spoil the surprise but she is the real mommy of the main characters dad.
In the classics realm, I am adding Grumpy Old Men to the list. I love this movie and it’s sequel, which sadly does not feature a Christmas story line. While most watch this movie for the comedy duo of Lemon & Matheau, the crowning story line in both movies belongs to Burgess Meredith’s feisty role as Jack Lemon’s father.
Let’s move onto the more the addicting treats for your television viewing. First there is a crazy amount of new content being released by Netflix. Interesting that Amazon and Hulu haven’t caught onto this new trend of holiday tv movies/movies. Just wait for the 2019 season.
This season Netflix several new options for the Holiday Season, they also post dozens of old tv-movies as well. What is hard to determine, is if these Netflix productions are actually a TV movies or major motion picture. For my watch list I am treating them as TV movies because truly they fall in the realm of Lifetime Movie structure, a C level cast and always a happy ending. First there is last years holiday hit, A Christmas Prince which I will admit is your typical Cinderella tale but with one twist. I was very entertained by young actor Honor Kneafsey’s character as the poor health sister to the prince. The story is slow but it is fun to watch. For 2018, Netflix jumped on the popularity of The Christmas Prince and rushed to release the The Christmas Prince: A Royal Wedding. The store pickups with the recent engagement of the prince and his commoner bride to be. My oldest fell in love with this movie series and it is certainly on our rotation for next season.
The Princess Switch is right up your alley if your kids are fans of High School Musical. It’s The Parent Trap on too much egg nog. Now I will admit, not a fan of the HSM franchise namely for the bad acting and horrible pop wanna be broadway numbers. That said, I enjoyed Vanessa Hudgens fortay into the twin character storyline. The movie also has a pretty enjoyable story line. Netflix also took note of Bad Moms use of the male physique. Is this movie worth watching, YES! Is this movie something you need to watch every year, No!
Another hit this holiday season is Netflix’s The Holiday Calendar. A story of two friends who find each other again and find love. It’s a sweet story but the love on screen is powerful thank to the two leads. Kat Graham (from Vampire Diaries) and singer turned actor Quincy Brown fly high in this tv movie. Sadly after the release of the movie, Brown’s mother passed away after fighting.
Christmas Inheritance is a fun cheesy storyline to watch for the season. Basically it’s a story of a young heiress learning her real place in the real world while she find love in her fathers home town. The highlight of this movie is that Andie MacDowell make a small appearance as a family friend. The only negative I have to say about this movie is that the male lead, lover was so awkward with his costar. Overall I think Eliza Taylor (from CW’s The 100) truly carried this cast with the help of MacDowell. Gonna give it a big old EH! for Christmas Movies.
I noticed that classic TV specials are lacking on the holiday tv show list. This year I am listing a classic for all kids. In 1979, folk singer John Denver teamed up with Jim Henson to not only do album featuring Denver and the Muppets but used the music in a holiday tv special. Even at 4 years old, I remember watching the John Denver and the Muppets: A Christmas Together TV Special with my brother well before xmas. The music from this special has become a staple for holiday playlists.
Misses this holiday season go to the newly released Free Rein: The Twelve Neighs of Christmas which is TV movie from Netflix show by the same name. Let’s just say the TV movie, is just bad acting and direction combined a horrible writing on top of that. I lived in a very previeldge area and this writing is just ridiculous take on top 1%.
Movie List (kids movie in BOLD)
A Bad Moms Christmas
A Charlie Brown Christmas
A Christmas Story
Christmas with the Kranks
The Christmas Candle
The Family Man
Grumpy Old Men
Home Alone 1&2
How The Grinch Stole Christmas
It’s Christmas Again, Charlie Brown
The Man Who Invented Christmas
A Medea Christmas
Meet Me in St. Louis
Miracle on 34th Street (new version. I fall asleep during the original)
National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation
Office Christmas Party
The Philadelphia Story
Pocket Full of Miracles
The Polar Express
Rudolph’s Shiny New Year
The Santa Clause 1, 2, 3
We’re No Angels
While You Were Sleeping
It’s A Wonderful Life
You’ve Got Mail
A Christmas Prince
A Christmas Prince: Royal Wedding
The Holiday Calendar
John Denver and the Muppets: A Christmas Together
The Vicar of Dibley