The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Health & Family

December 13, 2012

Some holiday movies perfect for whole family, others better after bedtime

JOPLIN, Mo. — Movies are just as much a part of the holidays as presents, meals and family. When we asked readers on Facebook which movies got them charged up for Christmas, they responded with a variety of films that are part of their holiday traditions.

We sifted through them, added a couple and came up with the following list for a variety of different families:

Undisputed champion

If there is any movie, in any genre, that deserves to be played over and over again (like cable station TBS usually does), it's Bob Clark's "A Christmas Story." From the fuzzy, pink bunny suit to the "major award" leg lamp, the movie is filled with scenes that have embedded themselves in our collective Christmas psyche.

The movie is based off the stories of Jean Shepherd, and is about Ralphie Parker's desperate Christmas wish of getting a Red Ryder BB gun as a present. Loosely bound by his scheming, the movie is remarkable for happening around Christmas, not because of it.

Even though the movie is set in pre-World War II America, the story is timeless and recognizable to kids of all ages.

Modern-day Scrooge

We could list a number of classic adaptations of "A Christmas Carol," but "Scrooged" is one of the best -- mainly because of Bill Murray.

Frank Cross is a cutthroat TV producer who is visited by three Christmas ghosts and, like Dickens' Scrooge, shown the error of his ways. A great ensemble of actors, from Bobcat Goldthwait to Carol Kane, help him along the way.

Because this is almost the definition of an '80s Christmas movie, some might not get the jokes behind cameos of Mary Lou Retton, Robert Goulet and Buddy Hackett. But for those who like a little edge to their Christmas movies, yet still want to watch with their kids, it doesn't get much better.

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