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Unconventional Entertainment Finds for Every Mood

The best movies to watch during the holiday season are the ones that hardly have to do with the holidays at all. Most of these do happen to be Christmas-related, but that’s only because there are so many Christmas movies. Regardless of what you celebrate, anyone can enjoy these cheerful, random movies during this festive season. I believe the best part of a Christmas movie is not how it celebrates the holiday itself, but rather how it honors everything associated with the winter season, like family, joy, and giving.

Let’s start by settling the Die Hard debate, it is absolutely a Christmas movie. There’s Christmas music, the plot takes place on Christmas Eve, and it is about a family coming together for the holidays. Besides the violent terrorist attack that the rest of the movie surrounds, at its core, Die Hard is about a guy trying to celebrate Christmas with his family, doing everything in his power to ensure his and his wife’s safety. It’s funny, exciting, and festive, a Holiday movie that will keep everyone happy.

One of my favorite Christmas movies is the 1974 Black Christmas, a classic horror movie about a sorority house that is visited by someone much more sinister than the Holly Jolly Santa Claus on one Christmas Eve. Despite its festive name, the movie doesn’t have much to do with Christmas at all and instead is a suspenseful horror movie that is genuinely super scary. There were a few remakes made over the years, but I wouldn’t bother with any of them, none compared to the horrifying original. The 1974 version is free on a handful of platforms, so I highly recommend it if you’re looking for a frightful holiday movie to start the season.

Another favorite of mine is Greta Gerwig’s 2019 Little Women, based on the 19th-century book written by Louisa May Alcott. This movie follows the lives of four sisters amidst the American Civil War, as they take on love, family, and their careers. There is only one short Christmas scene, but the movie is joyful and keeps the holiday spirit high throughout the story. Little Women may also be the most critically acclaimed movie on this list, winning over a dozen Academy Awards when it was released.

Edward Scissorhands is not necessarily a holiday movie, but it takes place partly during Christmas, so I always watch it around this time of year. If you haven’t seen it, Edward Scissorhands is a Tim Burton film about a man with scissors for hands learning to find love and family as he explores the world after being forsaken by his creator. It’s a wholesome movie about unconditional love that can be enjoyed all year round, but it’s especially appropriate during the holiday season.

Gremlins is probably the most campy movie on this list, as the horror-comedy is about a small town being overrun by strange, singing creatures, called the “mogwai.” Don’t be fooled by its horror genre, this movie is hilarious. The creatures that the movie surrounds are small, fuzzy, and tiny until they turn evil, green, and scaly, not exactly the most intimidating villains. It’s lighthearted and one of the most festive movies on this list, a great family movie to celebrate with this year.

Finally, if you’re in a more dramatic mood, Carol is a festive romance that takes place during the Christmas season but doesn’t have the cheesy Hallmark energy that most Christmas romances have. The movie is about two women who bond and slowly fall in love after meeting in a department store during a hectic winter day. Carol is a tender romance that is sweet if you are looking for a slow burn that is well-made and still festive enough to celebrate with.

I hope you find yourself enjoying some of these unusual holiday movies this winter, no matter what you may celebrate during this time of year. Sure, most if not all of these are Christmas movies, but that’s only because there are so many of them made. If you have any holiday movies that you love to watch that aren’t listed or aren’t necessarily Christmas-themed, feel free to share them below and keep the recommendations going.

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