A few weeks back a new movie came out called, The Night Before. It was an R rated comedy starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Seth Rogen taking place on Christmas Eve. It got decent reviews and I’m sure it was funny but the problem is it came out before Thanksgiving. If you planned on seeing it you probably already have. There’s still almost two more weeks until Christmas though.
Luckily, last week Netflix released a Christmas special, A Very Murray Christmas. If you listened to us you probably have already watched it. It’s only an hour too. Now what holiday entertainment is there to watch? Don’t worry, we got you covered. Here’s some hilarious Christmas comedies worth watching as well as some you should avoid.
I’ll Be Home for Christmas (1998)
This family friendly comedy stars Jonathan Taylor Thomas and a young Jessica Biel. It wasn’t the career launcher for JTT that he’d hoped for. The movie came out the same year Home Improvement ended and we haven’t seen much from him since. Biel on the other hand has gone on to do better things (and better people). She traded up from JTT (and this shit movie) to JT.
Surviving Christmas (2004)
Remember when Ben Affleck was a joke and not an accomplished director, or Batman? This movie came out during that period.
Fred Claus (2007) and Four Christmases (2008)
Vince Vaughn is great in movies like Swingers and Old School. Not so much in these movies. Maybe he should skip Christmas movies.
The Santa Clause 2 (2002) and 3 (2006)
If you’ve seen the first Tim Allen movie why would you need to see a sequel? Just forget these exist.
Jingle all the Way (1996)
This Arnold Schwarzenegger comedy is terrible. It’s kind of funny though. Phil Hartman is in it and he’s great. Arnold is always worth a few laughs. It’s hard to get past how bad the movie is though. If you’ve never seen it I recommend it. If you have though there’s no reason to watch it again.
Home Alone 2: Lost in New York (1992)
The first Home Alone is a classic (and is later on this list). The sequel was unnecessary and not based in reality at all though. The bad guys get hit with multiple traps that would surely kill them. One guy gets hit with multiple, then electrocuted, then a 100 pound object falls on him, then he falls on his back from about fifteen feet. Somehow he still gets up. Unreal. The whole sequence is worth watching, as is Tim Curry as a hotel concierge, but the rest of the movie isn’t good.
This alternative take on Dickens’ A Christmas Carol stars Bill Murray. I think that alone makes it worth watching.
Bad Santa (2003)
Christmas movies are usually great to watch with your family. Not this one though. This movie earns it hard rating. Billy Bob Thornton is excellent as an alcoholic criminal working as a Mall Santa in order to rob it on Christmas Eve. His partner is a dwarf who plays his elf and is responsible for disarming the security system. Yes, this is the premise and it’s hilarious.
The Muppet Christmas Carol (1992)
This is a much more faithful adaptation of the Dickens classic. Michael Caine absolutely kills it as Ebenzer Scrooge. The rest of the cast is filled out by Muppets. It’s not the funniest movie but it might be the best adaption of A Christmas Carol out there. And the Muppets are always entertaining.
A Christmas Story (1983)
If you haven’t seen this classic, it’s on TBS every Christmas, all day long. The movie is a series of stories taking place in the 1940’s Midwest told from the point of view of a nine year old boy during the Christmas season. It’s hilarious and really captures what it’s like to be a kid in the weeks leading up to Christmas.
Gremlins isn’t really a Christmas comedy but it takes place at Christmas time. It’s also not a straight comedy but the Gremlins themselves are hilarious. The movie also features one of the funniest scenes ever when Phoebe Cates’ character explains why she hates Christmas.
Elf was Will Ferrell’s first starring role. He’s gone onto make better and funnier movies (and worse ones) but Elf is perfect as a holiday comedy. Ferrell plays a human that was raised as an elf. Santa is in the movie. It has a perfect balance of laughs and Christmas cheesiness.
Home Alone (1990)
Home Alone shows every kid’s fantasy. Being left home alone means total freedom. You can watch what you want, eat you want, and stay up as long as you want. The real fantasy is that an eight year old boy would outsmart a couple of veteran criminals with numerous ridiculous traps. Macaulay Culkin sells it perfectly though.
National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (1989)
Chevy Chase is known as an asshole but he’s always great as Clark Griswold. In Christmas vacation, Clark slowly loses his mind over the holidays when his entire extended family comes to stay with him. Everything goes wrong for the Griswolds and it’s a lot of fun to watch the disaster that is their Christmas.