Wednesday, December 9, 2009

In honor of the upcoming holidays - some of my faves!

I am slowly working on a "Highlights of the Decade" list, but in the meantime, I'm posting some of my favorite holiday movies of all time - probably not a "top 10" (I'm sure I'll forget some) and not in any order (its too hard to put them in order).... But here goes. I look forward to your feedback and comments on YOUR faves!

The Family Man
* This is an old Riggers family favorite - and by that I mean my dad cries every time we watch it. Starring Nicolas Cage and Tea Leoni, it is the story of a man who has everything... but feels completely empty. After running into Don Cheadle, however, he is suddenly in a different life... a life he could have had, "if only."
It's a sweet and funny reminder of why family matters. And the little girl in it is precious and really entertaining. I hope you'll consider checking it out!

All I Want for Christmas
* My senior year in high school, my volleyball team was awesome. But a series of events led to a loss in the district championship game and that meant the season was over one week earlier than we expected. So my boyfriend at the time planned this great date that included a trip to the Point Defiance Zoo (in Tacoma, Wa), followed by lunch out and a movie. Since it was late in the year, he took me to see "All I want for Christmas." It was just what I needed.
All little Haley wants for Christmas is for her parents to get married again, and since she still believes in Santa Claus, she of course travels to Macy's to ask Santa for this one small thing...; and her brother, Ethan, comes up with an elaborate scheme to make it happen. Its an entertaining and touching story that also has plenty of laughs thanks to the kids and Kevin Nealon as mom's new boyfriend.

White Christmas
* This is probably my favorite Christmas movie. I love the script, the music, and the dancing. I don't even know that I can say more than this: When "White Christmas" is on, I am smiling. If you like musicals even a teeny little bit, you will love this movie.

While You Were Sleeping
* I watch this movie year round, even though its set at Christmas and New Years - its just a terrific movie. Starring Sandra Bullock (so you can really not go wrong) and Bill Pullman (who is a totally believable love interest somehow), its the story of a woman who falls in love with a man she sees at work - and before she knows it is falling in love with his whole family.
I find it hard to believe that you haven't seen this one, readers, but just in case, that's all I'm gonna say. Its a classic.

* I love this movie. Its completely ridiculous, but hilarious and fun. Buddy the Elf finds out he's actually NOT an elf after all. Thus, he heads to New York City from the North Pole to find his father. Hilarity ensues, of course! Enjoy!

The Holiday
* When I first saw this movie, I both loved and hated it. I loved that the women ended up happy, I hated that they started lonely because they were single or their boyfriends were louses (either way or both) - and that the message of the movie is that you can meet and find your soul mate basically, between Christmas and New Year's Eve, and that you are not whole unless you are mated up. But despite my discomfort with those two themes (which are pretty much the hallmark of any rom-com), I fell in love with it. I love Kate Winslet and Jack Black and their funny encounters, I love Eli Wallach and how perfectly he was cast for that role. I love Jude Law and how he turns out to be a sweet and mushy, not debonair at all. And I think Cameron Diaz is delightful. So there. I like it. You will probably like it too.

Love Actually
* Maybe my second favorite Christmas-themed movie, it is both entertaining and funny, crass, and touching. Yes, there is some nudity (and let me tell you, it was awkward to watch it when I saw it in the theater with my parents and my two youngest aunts....) - but that is one of my favorite stories, since those characters, who are stand-ins for an NC-17 type movie, eventually - well just pay attention to their final lines in the airport - its sweet. The other stories are equally infuriating, sad, hopefull, and happy.... and what you take away is a reminder that no family is perfect but that love "is actually all around." Oh, and the soundtrack is tremendous.

Other good ones you might want to check out:
* Its a Wonderful Life
* Miracle on 34th St. (the original)
* Sleepless in Seattle
* You've Got Mail
* National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation
* Muppet Christmas Carol
* Home Alone