The holidays will look a little different this year…. ok, they’re going to look a lot different this year. No pictures on Santa’s lap, no cramming into busy shopping malls to grab the new Baby Yoda toy (he plays hide and seek, you guys!), no gathering in your town square to watch the Christmas tree light up for the first time.
As the weather gets colder and indoor gatherings are canceled, one holiday tradition will remain unchanged: watching movies to get us feeling holly and jolly.
I am a little Christmas-obsessed, and this year being the dumpster fire that it is, I basically started celebrating on November 1st. I have already watched two new Netflix Christmas movies, an original Hulu feature, and three Lifetime holiday movies in addition to my annual viewings of “Elf,” “Home Alone,” “The Nightmare Before Christmas,” and “A Charlie Brown Christmas.” My other gold standards will be coming soon, but this is just the appetizer.
So hopefully, I have done some of the homework for you and can help you and your family sit back, relax, and enjoy!
“Jingle Jangle” (Netflix)
I may have watched this four times already. I may watch it 10 more times before Christmas. This is the holiday musical we all need this year, starring Forest Whitaker, Keegan-Michael Key, Queen Phylicia Rashad, Ricky Martin, Anika Noni Rose, and adorable newcomer Madalen Mills (whose “The Square Root of Impossible” is definitely my new favorite shower song). There’s singing, there’s dancing, there’s snowball fights, there’s puppets, there’s a flying robot. It’s magic. Watch it 15 times.
“Happiest Season” (Hulu)
This rom-com about Abby (Kristen Stewart) wanting to propose to her girlfriend at Christmas definitely toes the line between dramedy and rom-com but leaves you feeling full of Christmas cheer by the end (especially thanks to co-stars Dan Levy, Aubrey Plaza, and the amazing Mary Holland as neglected sister Jane). Once you finish the film, settle into the Google search spiral of the ending everyone wants for Aubrey Plaza’s character (no spoilers!)
“The Christmas Chronicles 2” (Netflix)
If you missed “The Christmas Chronicles” premiere in 2018, definitely go back and watch that one first because it is utterly charming. Kurt Russell plays Santa, and his actual wife, Goldie Hawn, plays Mrs. Claus. I don’t really think I need to say more than that? That should be enough, right?
“The Disney Holiday Singalong” (ABC)
This is the third installment of the 2020 Disney singalong series, hosted by Ryan Seacrest, and has been one of my family’s favorite things to come out of this year. Hear holiday classics sung by the Broadway cast of “Frozen,” Adam Lambert, Katy Perry, Michael Buble, and more! Disney magic in your own living room!
“Feliz NaviDAD” (Lifetime)
Mario Lopez stars as a single dad who has lost his Christmas mojo. Watch, enjoy, and bathe in the holiday cheer swimming around in those magic dimples of his. (AC Slater 4 life).
“Dear Santa” (Amazon)
Don’t watch this heartwarming documentary around the kiddos, as it takes you behind the scenes of the USPS and its Operation Santa project, which sends replies and even gifts to children who write to Santa. Have tissues ready.