Recommendations: Best Christmas Comedy Movies
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Recommendations: Best Christmas Comedy Movies

The holiday season is here, friends, which means it’s time for some good ole-style Christmas comedy. Now, there are many out there is it right well and more that is it right bad. I’ve put together a great list if you need help deciding which Christmas comedies are the best to tackle this December.

At Home Alone (1990)

Home Alone 2: Lost in New York could easily slide into this slot as it’s a funnier movie. Still, the 1990s My own house takes the cake in terms of overall quality. The story of a boy who is abandoned by his family for a vacation brings laughter and big hearts thanks to John Hughes’ sharp script. Slapstick abounds, but director Chris Columbus gleaned much from Kevin McCallister’s journey from naïve child to competent young adult and peppered the picture with enough holiday magic to ensure viewers leave with plenty of Christmas spirit.

How the Grinch Stole Christmas (2000)

Ron Howard’s adaptation of the classic children’s book Dr. Seuss wasn’t all that great, but Jim Carrey was so great as the Grinch that he lifted overproduction to incredible heights. Her performance is one for the ages, and she alone makes this one worth watching over the holiday season. The story revolves around why The Grinch stole Christmas from the Whos. Still, after spending an hour with our greedy pointy-nosed elf, it’s clear Whoville needs a good kick – plot points that all but derail the story entirely and leave you rooting for green-haired villains like Cindy Lou. Who saw that coming?

A Christmas Story (1983)

Nothing more to say A Christmas Story. By now, you’ve either given up on the TBS/TNT 24-hour Christmas Day marathon or loathed this 1983 comedy classic with a burning passion. Hint: if you’re a hater (and there are some), take another look at the photo. It’s quite brilliant. Then, see the not-so-great but still enjoyable follow-up, A Christmas Christmas Story.

Family Rock (2005)

This underappreciated picture boasts an extraordinary cast – Diane Keaton, Sarah Jessica Parker, Rachel McAdams, Craig T. Nelson, Dermot Mulroney, and the eye-catching Luke Wilson – a strong script and solid direction from Thomas Bezucha. Of course, the film is ripe with typical holiday mayhem and family drama. Still, the former is remarkably toned down, and the latter packs an emotional punch—great acting from all involved.

Gremlins (1984)

It’s dark, it’s scary, but it’s fun, Joe Dante gremlins it may not provide the joy of Yuletide but is funny enough to offer a unique counterpoint to the normally joyous celebration. This one is a classic through and through and holds up really well all these years later. Partner gremlins with Michael Dougherty Krampus for a double dose of violent chaos.

Fairy (2003)

Fairy rattled for at least 75% of his runtime and then fell off the rails in the third round having no hitting in the first 80 minutes. Still, when Jon Favreau steps back and lets Will Ferrell do his thing, it’s often the results brilliant enough to push through Fairy to the top of our list of vacations to look out for. Look for Zooey Deschanel as Ferrell’s cute love interest.

Friends Only (2005)

This maniacal go-for-broke comedy is too often kept together with lesser holiday fare but is more popular than it misses thanks to Ryan Reynolds’ hilarious performance. Lots of broad humor, but Just friends executed his slap with such precision that I could overlook his flaws and brusque demeanor. Anna Faris is perfect as the Brittney Spears type who has to adjust to a weekend in the suburbs. She uses her open sexuality to get out of every situation with hilarious results.

Scrooge (1988)

Bill Murray is terrific as cynical TV exec Frank Cross in Richard Donner’s dark remake Christmas carol – it’s a shame that the film didn’t follow suit. Yes, it’s a wildly entertaining comedy, but there’s a lot more to be gleaned from this premise; the picture feels underwhelming after every look. Murray and a brief cameo appearance by Carole King Scrooge worth your time, but there are certainly better deals to tempt your attention.

National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (1989)

For all the criticism Chevy Chase has been making lately, the whole world should bow down to the man who has given us National Lampoon’s Christmas Holiday. I watch this one every year and can confidently say that this John Hughes production is one of the most consistently funny comedies ever produced. Every scene is gold, and director Jeremiah Checkik squeezes every ounce of humor out of his formidable cast. This is the benchmark for all entries in the disastrous Christmas comedy genre.

The Muppet Christmas Song (1992)

Christmas carol has received hundreds of remakes over the years, and it’s fitting that the best of the bunch features a talking frog as Bob Cratchit. The songs are fun, the atmosphere is just plain creepy, and Michael Caine’s straightforward turn as Ebenezer Scrooge lent an emotional weight to the production. A classic through and through, and this is coming from someone who generally hates Muppets.

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