Top 3 movies to watch during the holidays

Hailey Griffin, Arts Editor

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The beginning of December marks the official countdown to Christmas. The holiday season brings several things: glad tidings, good times, and of course, great movies. Here we’ll list several holiday classics; if perhaps you haven’t seen them, you’re in for a treat. Get ready to sit back with a cup of hot cocoa, prop your feet up next to the Christmas tree, and relax. To start the list of Top 3 Holiday Movies, we have…

3) “National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation”

“National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation” showcases one of the Griswolds’ many absurd adventures. This Warner Bros. comedy reintroduces the Griswold family with Chevy Chase as Clark Griswold, Beverly D’Angelo as Ellen Griswold, Juliette Lewis as Audrey Griswold, Johnny Galecki as Rusty Griswold, and Randy Quaid as the one and only Cousin Eddie. The family decides to take a year off from travel and spend the holidays in the comfort of their own home. The ever-positive Clark plans for the Griswolds to have a fun, relaxing Christmas; per usual, things don’t quite go as planned. From scenes of the surprise Cousin Eddie visit to scenes of the burnt Christmas tree (and a burnt cat), “National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation” will never cease to amuse you. This year marks the 30th anniversary of the Christmas Vacation installment. In commemoration of the film’s 30 years, AMC theaters around the country will re-release the movie for the duration of December. See it at your nearest AMC theater before the holidays are over!

2) “A Christmas Story”

Directed by Bob Clark and narrated by Jean Shepherd, “A Christmas Story” is many things: (1) an example of the ‘hardships’ of childhood, such as bullies, annoying siblings, and protective mothers (2) an example of the family dynamic that we all wish we had, (3) a loosely-based memoir of the narrator’s own childhood, and (4) a glimpse into the 1940s, a time before cell-phones, game consoles, and various other electronic distractions. “A Christmas Story” offers a slightly different version of the holiday season that we’re familiar with. In the 1940s, you could spend Christmas Eve in front of a radio instead of a television screen. Back then, there was no Amazon expedited delivery; you actually had to leave your house and go to the mall to buy Christmas presents. Back then, a kid could acquire a BB gun without subjection to age restraints that kids these days face.

“A Christmas Story” is a heart-warming, family favorite that will remain a Christmas staple for years to come.

1) “The Nightmare Before Christmas”

One of Tim Burton’s most well-known animations, “The Nightmare Before Christmas,” is a live-action, musical collaboration of the spooky, eccentric spirit of Halloween and the inviting, merry spirit of Christmas. The fantasy setting of Halloweentown offers audiences unique animative qualities. Chris Sarandon voices the main character, Jack Skellington. Sally O’Hara voices Jack’s rag-doll love interest, Sandy. Several other voice actors, such as William Hickey (the mayor of Halloweentown) and Ken Page (the Oogie Boogie man) contribute their musical and theatrical talents to “The Nightmare Before Christmas” soundtrack. The plot introduces Jack Skellington, a skeleton who begins to grow tired of the perpetual Halloween spirit that encompasses Halloweentown.

Skellington, a.k.a the “Pumpkin King” and his trusty dog Zero wander outside of Halloweentown one day. The two find themselves lost in a Christmas-themed town, surrounded by things that are foreign to their way of life, such as presents, candy-canes, and the one and only “Sandy-Claws”. Director Henry Selick and producer Tim Burton use their unique film-style to develop the movie’s whimsical storyline. Don’t hesitate to immerse yourself in Burton’s animated realm this Christmas.