I’m a card-carrying Christmas movie junkie. The day after Thanksgiving, you’ll find me veggin’ on the couch, remote control in hand, seeking out my seasonal faves on Lifetime, Hallmark, ABC Family and the boob tube at-large – the sappier, the cheesier, the better. When you’re in search of a little good old fashioned holiday cheer, check your listings for any one of these super Christmas movies on TV. They’re sure to put you in a ho-ho-ho’ing, jingle belling, eggnog-imbibing kind of mood just in time for December 25th.
Can’t-Miss TV Christmas Movie #1: Comfort and Joy (2003), Lifetime. The Facts of Life alum Nancy McKeon plays Jane Berry, a stuff-loving high-powered executive-type who thinks she has it all. That is, she does until a Christmas Eve car crash sends her to an alternate reality that comes complete with a devoted husband, two cute kids and several other jarring surprises. We watch as Jane adapts to her new life and comes to the realization that money and possessions aren’t everything, and that in fact, they aren’t worth much at all. It may not be a unique concept (hello, The Family Man, anyone?), but it’s funny, charming and will get under your skin, if you let it.
Can’t-Miss TV Christmas Movie #2: A Season for Miracles (1999), Hallmark. What do you get when you take a good-hearted Aunt and two kids on the run, a conveniently empty old house, an angel, a super-friendly small town and a hottie police captain? A Season for Miracles, of course! Carla Gugino (Watchmen, Spy Kids) stars as Emilie Thompson, the self-appointed caretaker of her drug-addicted sister’s two children, who flees child protective services and winds up in the appropriately-named town of Bethlehem just as her beater-car quits. When townies mistake her for the heir to a large, vacant home, Emilie lets the misconception stand, despite her sensibilities, and finds love with the long arm of the law as the Christmas season approaches. It’s a tale of error and redemption, and reminds us to remember to look for miracles.
Can’t-Miss TV Christmas Movie #3: A Holiday to Remember (1995). This one may be the cheesiest of the bunch, but I don’t care. Cheese rocks! Connie Sellecca (The Greatest American Hero) is Carolyn Giblin, who along with daughter Jordi, leaves her fast-paced life in the city to begin anew in her teeny (but gorgeous – check out the lush scenery!) hometown. But it isn’t an easy transition: When she arrives back home, Carolyn comes face-to-face with Clay Traynor, the still-heartbroken man she’d left at the altar years earlier (Randy Travis). It’s a tale of love and rediscovery that’ll make you feel all squishy inside just in time for Christmas Day. And as a bonus, Golden Girl Rue McClanahan appears as Clay’s Aunt Miz Leona!
Can’t-Miss TV Christmas Movie #4: Christmas Child (2003). Based on a tale by Christian author Max Lucado, this one follows Chicago journalist and adoptee Jack Davenport as he heads to Dallas and Clearwater, Texas on assignment just days before Christmas. As Jack (William R. Moses, Perry Mason movies) investigates the story of the Ottolman family and a mysterious life-sized Nativity scene that graces a church in town, he uncovers stunning secrets of his own past. His revelations enable him to begin the process of repairing his own damaged marriage, and give him a family that he never expected to have. There’s no humor in this one, but it’ll make you think, and just may make you believe that very good things can arise from very bad situations.
Can’t-Miss TV Christmas Movie #5: The Christmas List (1997), ABC Family. It’s fluffy, fun and could never really happen, but don’t get lost in the sillies and miss out on the message behind The Christmas List. Mimi Rogers (Paper Dolls) stars as department store fragrance expert Melody Parris, a thirty something whose personal life is marked by a difficult mother and a jerky boyfriend. She creates a Christmas list filled with selfish items and after a co-worker drops it into the store’s mailbox, she’s stunned when she begins receiving her wishes, one by one. But the wishes aren’t granted in easy or intuitive fashion, and Melody must work to mitigate the consequences associated with her requests. In the end, she gets what she always wanted, but it doesn’t come easily, just as life rarely plays out as we expect.
Grab a big blanket, pop some popcorn, sip some cocoa and enjoy any of these Christmas movies on TV. They’ll all make your holiday feel-good wishes come true.
A Holiday to Remember, IMDB
The Christmas List, IMDB
Christmas Child, IMDB
A Season For Miracles, IMDB
Comfort and Joy, IMDB