Conger’s Guide to the Best Christmas Movies

It’s less than three weeks before Christmas. Which gives Deb and me just enough time to squeeze in all our favorite holiday movies before Santa’s here and we start moving into 2011.

Our list is traditional – but spiced with the eccentric.

Here you go…

White Christmas — C’mon, who can resist Bing and Danny? And how delicious were Vera-Ellen’s legs?

How the Grinch Stole Christmas — The 1966 cartoon. Accept no substitutes.

Elf — Am I the only one who gets weepy during those final scenes with James Caan?

Die Hard — The worst company Xmas party EVER.

A Christmas Story — Impossible to avoid.

Love Actually — Besides its obvious charms, it features Bill Nighy’s not-to-be-missed Christmas variation on the Troggs’ “Love Is All Around.”

And of course we’ve gotta include at least one adaptation of A Christmas Carol.

I say “Humbug!” to Bill Murray, Jim Carrey, and most of the modern portrayers of Ebenezer Scrooge.

I really like Alastair Sims’ 1951 performance.

But for my money, the best Scrooge of all time is Quincy Magoo, star of Mister Magoo’s Christmas Carol. It was the very first animated TV holiday special, first broadcast in 1962.

Maybe I love it because Magoo is the first Scrooge I remember from childhood.

More likely, it’s because I’ve watched Mister Magoo’s Christmas Carol every Christmas season since I was in the third grade.

None of that really matters, though. I just love Mr. Magoo, voiced by the late Jim Backus. Plus, the songs from that little TV show are still fantastic after 48 years. (Didja know that the same songwriters wrote Funny Girl years later?)

And who the hell can resist the great Gerald McBoing-Boing’s performance as Tiny Tim? (A very rare speaking role for him, incidentally.)

No business or marketing message today.

Just start watching holiday movies these weeks before Christmas. If you’re feeling down, they’ll give you a lift. If you’re already in the spirit, they’ll lift you even higher. Trust me.

If you have movies you wanna recommend or add to this list (or even if you want to argue), why not leave a comment right here? I’m sure other readers will appreciate it.

Jingle, jingle.

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Conger’s Guide to the Best Christmas Movies — 4 Comments

  1. Carrie, haven’t they remade “34th Street” more than once? I’m partial to the original, because Natalie Wood is so darn cute in it.

  2. Oh my, yes I do, but haven’t seen it since then. I remember being confused because it was so different, but in hindsight Disney was probably closer to the original – no doubt the 1934 version was Laurel&Hardy-ized.

    “Love Actually” may be the sleeper classic on your list. Alaistir Sim, yes yes yes. And ringle, ringle coins as they jingle make such a lovely sound …