The holidays are a time for being with family, friends, partying, drinking too much, eating way too much, and…watching holiday movies.
Here are the five best holiday comedies:
5. The Ref (1994)–This one is the surprise of the list, as I’m sure the majority of you have never heard of it — let alone seen it. This classic stars Kevin Spacey as unhappy husband Lloyd, with the movie opening in a couples counseling session. And when Denis Leary (The Ref) takes Lloyd and his wife hostage on Christmas Eve, returning to their house as their family is about to arrive, hilarity ensues. Since most of you have never seen it, I’m not giving the ending away.
Lloyd argues with Gus:
4. Elf (2003)–Will Ferrell at the height of his powers, with James Caan as his tormented dad? Yes, please! Elf is one of the most re-watchable movies ever, holiday or otherwise, with absurd scenes and memorable one-liners throughout. And while Ferrell’s ridiculousness is what carries it, the movie also has heart. And for you Game of Thrones fans, this movie also features Peter Dinklage — better known as Tyrion Lannister.
You sit on a throne of lies:
3. National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (1989)–When you combine Chevy Chase as Clark Griswold with Christmas, you get this gem. The title is a bit confusing, as the Griswolds don’t actually go on a vacation this time, but the insanity that takes place in their house more than makes up for it. There’s Clark’s tirade after his Christmas lights don’t work, a Christmas tree that catches fire, a squirrel attack, cousin Eddie’s absurdity, and so much more.
Aunt Bethany arrives:
2. Home Alone (1990)–This one needs no introduction. Since I’m about to throw a curveball with the top movie on this list, Home Alone will stand as the top Christmas comedy here. Everything about this movie is perfect, from Kevin’s hijinks to the casting of Joe Pesci and Daniel Stern as the hapless burglars to the brief appearance of John Candy as a jolly polka singer.
Kevin’s pizza arrives:
1. Planes, Trains & Automobiles (1987)–This is the rare movie that is truly hysterical and tugs at the heartstrings. Instead of Christmas, though, this one revolves around neurotic marketing executive Neal Page (Steve Martin) and fun-loving shower curtain ring salesman Del Griffith (John Candy) trying to get home for Thanksgiving after their plane lands in the middle of Kansas during a snowstorm. If you haven’t seen it, make it a priority.
They’re going the wrong way: