It’s that time of year again… the dark nights are rolling in and it’s time to snuggle down in pj’s under a blanket with a hot chocolate. The struggle is… what to watch?!
Here are my top 10 favourite films to watch at this time of year.
1. Polar Express
Yes, of course it is on the list! Unless you’ve been living under s rock, you will know the story of the young, unbelieving boy who takes a ride on the train to the North Pole. A journey of self discovery, adventure, friendship and above all else… MAGIC!! This film has become a fast favourite in my house as my little boy turned 3 this year and is staring to really understand what Christmas is this year.
While this film is not a ‘Christmas’ film as such, it involves a lot of snow. This film will always have a special place in my heart as it was the first film my mum took me to see at the cinema as a child.
Based on a true story, this animated film follows the journey of a homeless half husky half wolf dog as he struggles to prove himself safe to be around humans.
The film is set in 1925, Nome, Alaska 18 people have already gotten sick from diphtheria. One little girl is girl close to Balto’s heart. The town’s doctor sends for more diphtheria antitoxin, which Nome is out of. Road, rail and air routes are all blocked due to extreme weather so a race is held to find the fastest sled dogs to pick in the antitoxin from a neighbouring town. Balto joins in on the race and wins, but is cast out once again when his rival Steele, sets him up to growl. The humans deeming him as a dangerous wild animal once more. The sled team is sent to Nenana to pick up the antitoxin, but on the way back, there is an accident, and the musher is knocked out. When Balto realised the team hasn’t arrived he sets out to find them.
Again, another tale of self discovery filled with laughter, suspense and heart warming moments. I have watched this film every Christmas Eve since I was very young and will pass the tradition on to my boy.
3. All dogs go to heaven: a Christmas carol
Yet again, I have watched this film every Christmas Eve since I was a little girl. This films follows three dogs names Charlie, Itchy and Sasha as they race against time to stop their rival Carface and Belladonna from setting off a device which will force all dogs against their will to steal their owners presents and ruin Christmas! This film puts its own spin on the classics film ‘A Christmas Carol’.
4. The Snowman and the Snowdog
This story follows a young boy whose dog has just died. His family have movers into the house in whose backyard the snowman was originally built. While out playing he finds a photograph of the snowman. The boy decides to rebuild him and give him a new little companion by building a cute little snow dog.
This film is filled with Christmas magic with a tearful ending. My little boy adores this film and we watch it throughout the year.
5. Paper Angels
This film is maybe for families with older children around the age of 10+ .It follows the story of a mother who leaves her alcoholic and abusive husband and moved with her kids to a new town. Here they face some serious financial hardships. In that same town we meet Kevin whose marketing and design company is on the brink of shutting down due to the economy. Plus, Kevin’s wife Jenny is in a difficult pregnancy with twins.
Thomas who’s mother is struggling to make ends meet as a waitress starts a new school and becomes the target of a bully who feels incredibly threatened by how well Thomas plays basketball resulting in Thomas being unable to join the high school team. Thomas decides goes to the community centre where he meets Kevin and the two of them become unlikely friends through pickup basketball games. The both of them are unaware of incredible impact they will have on one another’s families this Christmas through The Salvation Army’s Angel Tree Program.
This film really does bring home the true meaning of Christmas. I myself am guilty of being so wrapped up in the sheer panic and frustration of what to buy people and worrying if I have spent enough on certain people that I forget that Christmas is meant to be shared with family and friends. It’s not about what you’ve bought, it’s about being there and doing your best for others.
So there you have my top 5 Christmas Family films.
I really hope this has given you some inspiration of what to watch over the festive season.