Monday, December 17, 2012

My Favorite Non-Holiday Holiday Movies

I can't believe Christmas is only 1 week away. One of my favorite unofficial traditions of the holiday season is watching lots of movies on my couch, huddled under blankets while it snows outside. Well, it's supposed to snow, but apparently global warming has come early and Chicago will probably never see snow in December again :(

I love watching crappy Christmas movies and decent Christmas movies and animated specials, even the creepy stop-motion ones. But there are a few movies that I have to watch around this time, even though they have nothing to do with the holidays. Does that happen with you? Are these some movies that you can only watch a certain time of year? Some are obvious, like watching Independence Day around July 4th. But there are others that aren't so obvious. For me, this usually corresponds to when they were first released. I can only watch American Beauty in the fall, preferably September. I prefer watching Can't Hardly Wait and My Best Friend's Wedding in June. These aren't ironclad rules, just weird preferences.

So as the holidays wind down, allow me to share some of my favorite non-holiday movies to watch. (Note: When compiling this list, I realized that all of these movies were released in December. But still, they're perfect ones to watch on a gloomy Sunday afternoon on TBS whilst vegging on your couch.)

As Good As It Gets
(But skip everything James L Brooks made after that -- Spanglish and How Do You Know. And ignore the creepy age difference between Jack Nicholson and Helen Hunt.)

Jerry Maguire
(Tom Cruise has never been better, and Cameron Crowe is such a great writer. The dialogue is just beautiful in this film. I'm so happy he won an Oscar, albeit 4 years later)

The Royal Tenenbaums
(I love the look of this movie - so warm and fuzzy. There's so much detail. It's like a moving painting. But I'll admit this film isn't for everyone. Either you love it or hate it.)

Something's Gotta Give
(Every Nancy Meyers film is a non-holiday holiday movie: What Women Want, The Holiday, It's Complicated. And her films are total interior design porn. Just try and NOT salivate over Diane Keaton's beach house. Go on...I'm waiting...)

You've Got Mail
(How is this not a holiday movie? It just FEELS like one. Who wouldn't want to frolic in the Upper West Side? And sadly, Fox Books would probably be out of business today. F-O-X)

Ok, your turn. What are some of your favorite non-holiday films you love watching around this time?


  1. You've Got Mail totally feels like a New Years movie to me.

    The only movie I have like this is Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, which is sort of a Christmas movie (it has Christmas music, and Santa hats ...) but mostly not.

    1. I saw KKBB years ago, but remember liking it a lot. The other Meg Ryan movie, When Harry Met Sally, is more of a NYE movie for me. Oh Meg Ryan, whatever happened to her...