The Muppet's Christmas Carol. Every year. From Kermit the Frog's seminal performance as Bob Cratchit to Michael Caine hamming it up in a nightgown, it's truly got everything. Plus, doesn't everyone like to pretend they live in Victorian London at Christmas?
For crying into your gin it has to be It's a Wonderful Life, and for laughs Home Alone (obvs) and National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation. What could be funnier than Chevy Chase fucking everything up, and a hilarious toupee on fire scene?
For a long time the two most important annual Christmas films in the Mott household were Die Hard and Lethal Weapon. These days, my personal pick would have to be Love Actually, which features multiple moments that tear my heart out every time I see it (especially the one where Andrew Lincoln uses cue cards to silently tell Kiera Knightly how he’s always loved her - fuck, I’m tearing up thinking about it!).
I can’t resist watching the 1994 remake of Miracle on 34th Street if it’s on TV. I know it’s not an old classic, but I remember going to the cinema to see it with my best friend Stephi when it came out, so it has a special nostalgic significance for me.
Elf! It always makes me laugh and smile and is forever quoteable. Like...
"Francisco! That's fun to say! Francisco... Frannncisco... Franciscooo...
You stink. You smell like beef and cheese! You don't smell like Santa.
I just like to smile! Smiling's my favorite."
Me in St Louis with Judy Garland. The film is set in an American family home over the course of a year, and is in fact full of joy with one of the happiest endings you can wish for. But it’s the Christmas scene, where Garland sings Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas to calm her youngest sister down when the little girl realizes that the family are probably spending their last ever Christmas together, that has made it my favourite seasonal film since I saw it at my grandmother’s house as a child.
I also have a soft spot for the Bing Crosby and Rosemary Clooney film White Christmas, which actually has a group of crazy kids (all aged 30 plus) put on a show in a barn. It’s another musical and also a love story. Come the season I only want schmaltz.
A Christmas film that makes me cry is Love Actually, 136 minutes of my life I will never get back. It's not a film but the BBC version of The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe always makes me feel Christmassy (until Aslan comes and ruins everything so it isn't snowy any more).
LOVE ACTUALLY. EVERY TIME. Hugh Grant as Prime Minister? All star British cast? Liam Neeson as the best guy ever? I watch it all year round. I want to write forever on how much and why I love it. If you don't love it too, I hate you.
None unless sneaking off to watch the Eastenders omnibus counts.
Muppet Christmas Carol. The bit where Michael Caine's Scrooge goes back and sees his old self being a dick to a lovely lady and they sing "THE LOVE IS GONNNNE" to each other in the forest makes me well up. Christmas is usually just in time for my annual breakup, so it's especially raw you know. Oh and I cry at the sight of Tiny Tim because there's nothing worse than a little frog on crutches, coughing AND THEN DYING.
Love Actually, just because it can't not be - unless you have a Grinch heart or for some reason Hugh Grant's dancing offends you. And 'Santa Claus: The Movie' - I love how 80s it is and how the little homeless kid is dressed like Michael Jackson.
Just like Alisande, my choice has to be Meet Me In St. Louis, every single time. Judy Garland singing Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas (which would be my favourite festive tune if it wasn't for Take That's Babe) and it's all snowy outside and then Tootie runs out and bashes down the snowmen because they're moving away and she doesn't want anyone else to have them, and when Judy/Esther waltzes behind the Christmas tree with her grandpa and comes out the other side with her true love, John Truett... WAAH!