Great Holiday Movies

A Christmas Carol staring George C Scott - dvd cover.

Our priority at MoneySmartFamily is to help readers improve their finances and we partner with companies that could help you. Some links on this page are from our partners. Read how we earn money here.

This Holiday Movies Super Page contains a growing list of our favorite movies for Christmas, Easter, Halloween, & the 4th of July

We love celebrating holidays, and watching these movies just makes each holiday more special. 

Holiday Movies – Easter

King of Kings

If you only watch one Easter movie this spring, make itKing of Kings. It was produced in 1961 but is so good that we had to mention it. The story traces the life of Christ and intertwines the life and actions of Barabbas — the criminal who was released by Pontius Pilate instead of Jesus.

Jeffrey Hunter portrays a young and energetic Jesus. His kindness and sincerity in his delivery of Christ’s words make his depiction of Jesus very believable. His portrayal of the Sermon on the Mount is a high point in the film. The depiction of the Crucifixion and Resurrection have the kind of power that can bring a lump to your throat, even after repeated viewings!

The movie opens with an explanation of the Roman conquest of Judea. Then it traces the birth, life, ministry, crucifixion, and resurrection of Jesus. 

King of Kings is appropriate for all ages. 

Holiday Movies – Christmas

A Christmas Carol with George C Scott

Christmas just isn’t Christmas unless you watch at least one version of A Christmas Carol, and this our favorite A Christmas Carol with George C. Scott.

We all know the story of Scrooge and Bob Cratchit. This version just happens to be the one we turn to a couple of times each year to remind us of how fortunate we are and how important generosity, family and laughter are central to our total fulfillment in life.

The main actor

George C. Scott gives one of the greatest performances I have ever seen an actor give; he truly becomes Ebenezer Scrooge to the fullest degree possible. Scott can say more with just the slightest hint of a facial movement than many actors can say during the course of an entire movie.
All of the performers here are excellent, bringing to life adored characters such as Bob Cratchit, Tiny Tim, and Scrooge’s nephew Fred.

All four spirits are remarkable, none more so than Scrooge’s old partner Jacob Marley; having Marley’s jaw drop after untying the burial cloth holding his mouth closed is an important aspect of the story and certainly does make an impression on the viewer.
This is just one example of the moviemakers’ faithfulness to Charles Dickens’ original story; another would be the inclusion of the two miserable children, Ignorance and Want, beneath the robes of the Ghost of Christmas Present.

Never too late to change

This timeless tale works extremely well on its own, but the unsurpassed acting skills of Scott make it almost more than real. The change wrought in him during the course of the night, as he changes from a man of crass materialism and unkindness to a repentant soul pleading for a chance to change his ways, is powerfully presented and really touches the viewer emotionally.

The simple happiness revealed in the lives of Bob Cratchit and others are as heart-warming as the forgotten mistakes and pains of a younger Scrooge are agonizing. If there is any heart out there that is not touched by the goodness and courage of Tiny Tim, I don’t even want to know about it.

No matter how many times you watch this movie, it proves itself capable of bringing a tear to your eye, a lump in your throat, and ultimately the very spirit of true holiday cheer and Christian charity that Dickens intended it to convey. (credit to Amazon reviews for some of this content)

Miracle on 34th Street — Edmund Gwenn, Maureen O’Hara, John Payne and Natalie Wood. We watch this a couple of times each year.

How the Grinch Stole Christmas — original animated version. We love the way Boris Karloff narrated this classic story.

It’s a Wonderful Life — Jimmy Stewart and Donna Reed. We watch this movie two or three times each year and it always makes us cry.

The Santa Clause — Tim Allen. Great family fun to watch.
Have a movie marathon and watch The Santa Clause 2 and The Santa Clause 3. They’re all great movies.

The Best Christmas Pageant Ever!
with Loretta Swit

InThe Best Christmas Pageant Everan angel cries out, “Hey everybody, unto you a child is born!” It may be “unorthodox” but is it touching as you read or watch the transformation of bullying street urchins into sensitive, tearful little children.

The transformation starts as a small community church prepares to put on their annual children’s Christmas Pageant for their Christmas Eve service. Things begin to go haywire when the mother who coordinates the pageant is hospitalized and has to hand over control of the event to someone else.

The expected casting is thrown to the wind when a tough bunch of kids from a welfare family shows up, expecting free food if they participate in the pageant, and wanting to have the lead roles.

The movie stars Loretta Swit who starred in M*A*S*H and is really fun to watch. This really is a must see or read for every family, even if you have no children at home. 

Holiday Movies – Patriotic

Yankee Doodle Dandy

Yankee Doodle DandyStarring James Cagney, is a jubilant and patriotic musical that you won’t want to miss. It’s an oldie, but goodie. If you’ve never seen it you’ll really enjoy learning about the life of George M. Cohan – one of the most prolific composers of patriotic music of all time.

Academy Award Winner

Premiering in 1942 Yankee Doodle Dandy won 5 Academy Awards:

  • Best Actor – James Cagney
  • Best Sound Recording
  • Best Music, Scoring of a Musical Picture
  • Best Picture
  • Best Actor in a Supporting Role  – Walter Huston

Yankee Doodle Dandy Story Line

The movie starts in the office of President Roosevelt as he is talking with Cohan to award him the Congressional Medal of Honor for his contributions to World War I troop morale. The movie chronicles the life of George M. Cohan from his birth on the fourth of July to a family of Irish stage performers, through his tumultuous childhood and into his amazing adulthood.

In total Cohan spent 55 years on stage and wrote more than 35 plays and 500 songs.

Featured Songs

This movie highlights such great songs as:

  • You’re a Grand Old Flag
  • Over There
  • Yankee Doodle Dandy
  • Give My Regards to Broadway
  • Harrigan

James Cagney in the leading role as Cohan gave it his all in this amazing movie his dancing is amazing – watch the clip below.

Holiday Movies – Halloween

It’s the Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown

It’s the Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown” is one of our family favorites for fall. Charles Schultz’ characters are so lovable and cute, and this movie is unlike more contemporary scary and ghoulish Halloween movies.

It’s the Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown is appropriate for children of every age. It includes lots of fall and Halloween traditions like pumpkin carving, bobbing for apples, trick-or-treating and visiting a pumpkin patch. It also includes a vignette about Snoopy and the Red Baron.

The music is awesome and the story has a sweet simplicity to it. It is a classic holiday movie that every generation of children should get to enjoy.

If you have any favorite Holiday Movies that aren’t listed, please mention it in the comment section below.

Leave a Reply