From a talking green frog to an angel who earns his wings, classic movies can be remembered for generations for their quoteable lines as well as the movie’s ability to endure and entertain audiences of all ages. Here are classic Christmas films for families to consider.
Amazon Video: “The Muppet Christmas Carol”
The Muppets take on Charles Dickens’ holiday classic tale in “The Muppet Christmas Carol.” The result is in a “wonderfully corny comedy (that) solicits laughs with hardly any profanity” and is full of “sight gags,” according to Parent Previews. The website highlights the presence of a few “touching” scenes and praises the film’s music with “catchy lyrics” that “help to move the story along.” Michael Caine, who plays Ebenezer Scrooge, is joined by Jim Henson’s muppets, Kermit the Frog, Miss Piggy, Fozzie Bear, Gonzo and Rizzo the Rat. Ok.com recommends the film for viewers ages 3 and older.
Netflix: “White Christmas”
Two war buddies return home and become a successful song-and-dance team. Bing Crosby, singing the title song, is joined by Danny Kaye, Rosemary Clooney and Vera Ellen as they try to help their former commanding general. The Dove Foundation awarded the film its “Family-Approved” seal for all ages calling Irving Berlin’s musical a “holiday classic” with themes of love and loyalty. Ok.com recommends the film for viewers ages 5 and older.
Amazon Video: “A Christmas Story”
All Ralphie wants for Christmas is a Red Ryder B.B. gun, but convincing his parents, teacher and Santa will take some imagination. Common Sense Media says the film, set in 1940s, offers an appealing sense of nostalgia and a “delightful and funny adventure.” The website notes the film is a “nice antidote to all those Christmas television specials with perfectly harmonized carols and perfectly wrapped gifts,” but does contain some profanity and bullying. Ok.com recommends the film for viewers ages 9 and older.
iTunes: “It’s A Wonderful Life”
An angel gives a man a glimpse of what life would be like without him. Common Sense Media calls the film a “Christmas classic” that “takes on the human condition in all its complexity.” While the film contains “some dated behavior — particularly in the way an African-American maid is treated,” Common Sense Media also highlights its “beautiful message about how much each person means to the world.” Ok.com recommends the film for viewers ages 4 and older.
iTunes: “Miracle on 34th Street”
A man is hired at Macy’s department store and claims to be the real Santa. When the department store’s manager, who teaches her daughter not to believe in Santa, hears about his claims, her views of Christmas are put to the test. The Dove Foundation awarded the film its Dove “Family-Approved” seal for all ages, stating that the film is “an irresistible fable that has for many become synonymous with celebrating Christmas.” Ok.com recommends the film for viewers ages 3 and older.