You'll notice some in our Top 10 that couldn't make the window display due to obvious reasons, but we felt they had to make our list as they are too good not too!
Raymond Briggs’s book came to life once a year throughout many childhoods, as the animated film was shown on British TV with religious precision. Nominated for an Oscar, the short film tells of a boy whose snowman magically becomes real – but not forever. Add the haunting song ‘Walking In The Air’ and you have a true Christmas classic.
‘You wanna see some magic? Here, let’s watch you disappear.’ Billy Bob Thornton’s drunk, grouchy, thieving store Santa is the perfect antidote to saccharine Christmas movies, while sneaking in a bit of heart behind the humour and crime comedy thrills.
This is either unbearable schmaltz or a festive heart-warmer, depending on who you ask. Love is certainly all around in this ensemble comedy-drama set in the holiday season: even a school nativity play is an opportunity for romance. Comic standouts include Bill Nighy as an ageing rock legend who’s reduced to competing in the race to land a Christmas Number One.
It’s unlikely that Bill Murray could ever have got through his career without playing a version of Scrooge. His deadpan delivery was made for this comic take on Dickens’ festive moral tale, in which his TV exec oversees a broadcast of ‘A Christmas Carol’.
Fancy something festive but naughty, cute but deadly? This 1980s Christmas classic can oblige. Gizmo the mogwai looks like the kind of harmless pet you’d give your kid for Christmas – but you don’t want to get him breeding. Tremendous fun.
Leave it to Tim Burton to give Christmas a dark edge, although this stop-motion animation still has plenty of heart, too. Jack Skellington is the anti-hero who decides he’s had enough of Halloween and wants to stand in for Santa. Terrific fun.
Cop John McClane (Bruce Willis) was hoping for a quiet Christmas, but sinister kidnapper Hans Gruber (Alan Rickman) has other ideas. ‘Die Hard’ made an action star out of TV actor Bruce Willis, and made many subsequent holidays just as challenging for our hero.
‘Home Alone’ is such a perfect kids’ fantasy, it’s a wonder nobody thought of it before. Parents go on holiday, forget a kid, he can eat ice cream and watch movies as much as he likes, before getting the chance to invent some booby traps to catch burglars.
A gift to Christmas TV programmers, this festive comedy makes full use of Will Ferrell’s man-child charm by casting him as a naive human raised by elves and thrown into a cynical modern-day New York. Highlights include a duet of ‘Baby, It’s Cold Outside’ with an unwitting Zooey Deschanel as she sings in the shower.
A moving tribute to the power of the individual, Frank Capra’s snowy festive classic is a true delight, as entertaining as it is message-driven. James Stewart puts in the performance of a lifetime as a potential suicide who’s given a chance to look at life with fresh eyes. Merry Christmas George!