It seems everyone has a favorite Christmas movie. And, if you don’t, your friends have probably tagged you as the Grinch or, worse yet, a Scrooge.
Holiday classics are woven into American culture this time of year. And it makes plenty of sense. When else do we have so much time away from school or work to kick back and use the cooler weather as an excuse to stay inside on a big, cozy sofa?
Christmas is king for movies. It’s often when Oscar contenders are released, and it’s a time when many of us find ourselves cuddled up at home with loved ones and decompressing from all the gift buying and holiday preparation.
And, for the kiddos, it’s a time when new classics are born and old ones are shared — often reaching back generations to the 1940s for “Miracle on 34th Street” (1947) and “It’s a Wonderful Life” (1946).
So why not take it a step further and forge even more family memories?
Once you’ve picked a movie or two, tidy up the TV room, add a movie-specific decoration or two and prepare a special movie snack.
Here are a few ideas to get started.
The Ghost of Christmas Past and the Elf of the Future
With so many classics to choose from, why not share a night with the family where each generation gets to pick their favorite?
Maybe dad has fond memories of the Red Ryder BB gun in “A Christmas Story,” and wants to share that cinematic magic with his children. Or maybe the kids want to show mom and dad why “The Polar Express” is their holiday favorite.
Let the kids pick a snack for their movie. And mom and dad get to choose something for their generation’s pick.
Take time to share a story or two about why your movie choice has a special place in your memory. Talk about favorite characters and scenes.
Then, enjoy the show.
Beyond Fruitcake: A Movie-Themed Meal
Pick a favorite holiday movie, and then challenge your culinary skills by cooking a meal or snacks that are featured in the film or inspired by it.
Looking for an insanely easy one? “Home Alone” features delivery pizza. Go wild by creating an ice cream sundae bar for the kids to build their own version of Macaulay Culkin’s crazy homemade dish.
Step it up a notch? Whip up some gourmet hot chocolate to keep you warm while watching “The Polar Express.”
Culinary master? Just try to top the hilariously bad meal the Griswold’s eat in “Christmas Vacation.”
Let the kids rule the roost and show you some of their favorite animated holiday films. Then, throw them for a curve by showing them the claymation classics of the 1960s and beyond.
The animation Christmas specials can also become learning tools if you take some time to watch videos together about how the art is created. For claymation, consider this short clip. For digital animation, try this short piece.
Happy Holiday viewing!