So if you real-ly love CHRIST-mas…

December 3, 2010 at 8:00 am | Posted in celebrity obsession, the media | 3 Comments
Tags: , , , ,

When I was a child we were allowed to start listening to Christmas carols the Friday after Thanksgiving. Everything else, however — lights, decorations, candy canes — had to wait until December 1 to be strung up and twinkle. Even though now that I have children and I am again as giddy as they (or as they will be, once they kind of “get” the idea of the Christmas season) about the next four weeks — I love advent (with a small “a”); I love that even though it is dark by 4:15 the lines of car tail lights blink festively red as they stretch down the freeway in front of me — I don’t feel right starting my own traditions until the calendar flips from November to December.

So, now it’s December, and I can break out my small but growing collection of decorations, smell the paperwhites in my kitchen windows, and light the tree at 4:30 p.m. I can also watch Christmas movies. No, not It’s a Wonderful Life or Miracle on 34th Street (though, call me a heretic, I do like the 1994 version with Elizabeth Perkins), or even Rudolph. I have my own Christmas movie aesthetic, decidedly untraditional and, yes, decidedly skewed towards the only kind of movie I really like anyway: chick-flicks. But they get me in the spirit — and I know several of my readers will not argue with my choices! In the spirit of the blogosphere and its ubiquitous lists and countdowns then, here are my top five annual Christmas classics:

5. Elf — just as my mother commenced the Bing Crosby rotation immediately after Thanksgiving, you can watch this Thanksgiving weekend. Likely you’ll watch it a few more times during the month of December. Also, very likely for several of these viewings, you will not be completely sober (making it, like most Will Farrell movies, even funnier). P.S. Smiling’s my favorite!

4. The Holiday — I dragged Tim to this one December right after I finished my law school exams for the semester. He indulged because of my fragile, exhausted state (oh yeah, I was pregnant, too). I’m quite sure he regrets it to this day. But what a lovely fantasy with lovely home decor.

3. Bridget Jones’ Diary — technically not a Christmas movie, but it begins on Christmas with Colin Firth in a reindeer sweater. And is one of my top five favorite movies ever. (I never said I was a film student; plus, I wrote 30-page paper in law school discussing Bridget Jones in the context of Aristotle and ethics and Jane Eyre. If you don’t believe me, I’ll email you a copy.)

2 ¬†Love Actually — Colin Firth again! And Hugh Grant (again!) My sister Erin and friend Meg and I have made this a Christmas tradition. Meg pointed out last night that Natalie, the Prime Minister’s secretary, has the winsomness¬†of Kate Middleton. (I suppose you have to find meaning and relevance where you can during each annual viewing, no?)

1. Sound of Music — is this a Christmas classic simply because it is on television at Christmastime every year? I grew up wishing I were Marta, or at least that I could play Marta in some local musical production. This movie has it all: nuns, scenery, Nazis, teen romance, a glamorous countess, and, of course, true love. Little Buggy and I sing “Doe a Deer” a lot in the car (she can pitch match, by the way — I was a bit worried that the maternal genes might not be dominant here…), and I hope that this year I can at least show her the highlights: in addition to “Doe a Deer,” the Lonely Goatherd song and maybe So long, Farewell…

What is your Christmas favorite?

Blog at
Entries and comments feeds.