Last Updated: December 8th
Christmas movies are a staple of the holidays. Whether it’s enjoying the same films you watched when you were little or just finding something to bring your relatives together for 83 minutes, everyone has a different reason to love those movies. Netflix might be lacking when it comes to the classics, but they’re giving Hallmark a run for its money with new rom-coms and a roster of blockbusters you didn’t realize were actually holiday flicks.
Here are some of the best Christmas movies you can find on the streamer right now.
Lady Bird (2017)
Run Time: 94 min | IMDb: 7.5/10
Greta Gerwig’s love letter to her hometown of Sacramento, California follows Saoirse Ronan and Laurie Metcalf as they navigate the often-frustrating relationship between mother and daughter. Ronan plays “Ladybird,” a young woman attending Catholic school who longs for the culture and change of scenery that New York City promises. Her mother, Metcalf, is overbearing and overprotective, and the family’s lack of money and social standing contributes to a rift between the two. Technically, Christmas is just a small blip in the bigger storyline, but it marks one of the few times mother and daughter can bond over terrible gifts — which feels very on brand in terms of feel-good holiday bingewatching.
Just Another Christmas (2020)
Run Time: 101 min | IMDb: 6.7/10
After taking a very nasty fall on Christmas Eve, grinchy Jorge blacks out and wakes up one year later, with no memory of the year that has passed. He soon realizes that he’s doomed to keep waking up on Christmas Eve after Christmas Eve, having to deal with the aftermath of what his other self has done the other 364 days of the year. On a first pass, you might write this movie off as a Christmas-themed Groundhog’s Day comedy but look again. This dude lives a whole year, loses his memory of it, and must piece together what happened on Christmas Eve as everyone else is rushing around doing their holiday business. It’s the holiday version of Chris Nolan’s Memento, y’all.
Run Time: 96 min | IMDb: 8.4/10
Normally, Christmas movies trademarked by Netflix come with sappy romances, mistaken princesses, and Vanessa Hudgens but this original animated feature is the exception, and the best holiday flick the streaming platform has given us yet. It imagines a different origin story for Saint Nicholas, one that involves an eager-to-please postman voiced by Jason Schwartzman and an isolated, gruff Santa voiced by J.K. Simmons. The two go on a toy-making adventure together that ends up mending old wounds and bringing entire villages together. Oh, and the animation is a visual feast. Prepare yourself.
White Christmas (1954)
Run Time: 120 min | IMDb: 7.6/10
White Christmas is one of those holiday movies that many casual Netflix watchers have probably never gotten around to watching. It was 1954’s most successful film, however, and it’s packed with some of the biggest stars of the era. It’s that one with Bing Crosby tap-dancing with Danny Kaye you may have heard about. When their army buddy characters join a sister act of performers, they’re forced to sing and dance their way to saving an unsuccessful inn run by their old military general. It’s a lovely, light vehicle for Crosby and Kaye along with Rosemary Clooney and Vera-Ellen to just do what they were known for, and the undeniable charisma of each lead carries White Christmas during the brief times between tunes.
I’m Thinking Of Ending Things (2020)
Run Time: 134 min | IMDb: 6.8/10
Charlie Kaufman’s latest film is based on a book of the same name and stars Chernobyl’s Jessie Buckley as a young woman meeting her boyfriend’s parents for the first time, which normally would be a happy event except she’s secretly been planning to break up the with the guy. That guy is Jesse Plemons, who seems to be in everything these days, and along with Toni Collette and David Thewlis who play his parents, they make for hellish dinner mates. There’s a sinister vibe permeating everything about this straightforward plot, so if you think you know how this ends, let us be the first to tell you: you don’t have a clue. And yes, at first glance it’s a weird choice for a Christmas movie, but the couple is heading home in the dead of winter and going through all the rituals associated with returning to your hometown during the holidays. Plus, some people just can’t get behind all the cheer this year, so this one’s for them.
Jingle Jangle: A Christmas Journey (2020)
Run Time: 122 min | IMDb: 6.5/10
Set in the gloriously vibrant town of Cobbleton, the film follows legendary toymaker Jeronicus Jangle, whose fanciful inventions burst with whimsy and wonder. But when his trusted apprentice steals his most prized creation, it’s up to his equally bright and inventive granddaughter (and a long-forgotten invention) to heal old wounds and reawaken the magic within. Any movie that has the gall to give a main character such a blatantly fictitious, wholly ridiculous name as Jeronicus Jangle is sipping the kind of Christmas-flavored Kool-Aid we want to be high on this year. Will it give us a steampunk-themed Willy-Wonka holiday adventure? Is Jeronicus Jangle the new Grand Moff Pascal Tarkin? So many questions will be answered.
Silver Linings Playbook (2012)
Run Time: 122 min | IMDb: 7.7/10
Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Lawrence star in this drama that’s equal parts rom-com and a harrowing look at mental illness. Cooper plays Pat Solitano, a former high school teacher who recently completed a stint at a mental institution. Things aren’t going well for Pat, he’s moved back in with his overbearing parents (a wickedly-funny Robert De Niro and Jacki Weaver), his now ex-wife cheated on him, he doesn’t get along with his therapist, and he’s operating under the delusion that if he gets fit and gets his sh*t together, he can get his wife back. Lawrence plays Tiffany, a young woman with problems of her own. She’s depressed after the death of her husband and prefers sex with strangers to drown the pain. The two strike up a friendship that pushes both to their mental and emotional limits. It’s a messy, surprisingly sweet love story with a finale set during the holidays that should make you feel all warm and jolly inside.
The Christmas Chronicles (2018)
Run Time: 104 min | IMDb: 7.5/10
Look, we know what you might be thinking. and yes, this does follow the Hallmark holiday template. It’s got corny dialogue, cheesy jokes, and plenty of plot holes. It’s also got Kurt Russell putting in a performance no one saw coming. Russell plays the Big Man himself, Santa Claus, and other than giving us a modernized version of Jolly Old that millennials will thirst over for years to come — finally, a DILF Santa everyone can get behind — the actor sells the sh*t out of this thing, rocking out in jailhouses, giving us manic car chases, and playing a Papa Noel that seems just a bit unhinged, and all the funnier for it.
A Very Murray Christmas (2015)
Run Time: 56 min | IMDb: 5.5/10
Okay, technically this is a Christmas special, but it’s got enough holiday cheer (and famous guest stars) to warrant a spot on this list. Bill Murray stars as his charming, self-deprecating self, trying to stage a Christmas TV special despite a rather worrisome snowstorm threatening his act. As the show descends into chaos, Murray helps marry an on-the-rocks couple, sings a duet with Chris Rock, and plays a few tunes with Miley Cyrus while George Clooney stirs him a cocktail. Who would resist?
Run Time: 84 min | IMDb: 5.3/10
You may have heard about the weirdest Christmas movie ever, but even if you have, it’s probably worth a refresher since the whole thing feels like someone picked words out of a hat and made a feature out of it. Pottersville centers on a man named Maynard Greiger (Michael freakin’ Shannon) becoming a town hero after being mistaken as Bigfoot during a drunken romp after discovering his wife (Christina Hendricks) is engaging in a furry affair with Ron Perlman (he has a character name but come on). Also Ian McShane is in it and Thomas Lennon plays a villainous Bigfoot hunter. Just watch it. You have nothing to lose other than 84 minutes and a little bit of your sanity.
Single All The Way (2021)
Run Time: 99 min | IMDb: 6.3/10
Michael Urie stars in this holiday treat playing a guy so fed up with his family’s input into his singlehood that he convinces her best friend and roommate (Philemon Chambers) to pose as his boyfriend for Christmas. All goes well until Urie’s Peter meets a potential love interest, forcing Chambers’ Nick to finally confront how he feels — and to enlist the help of Kathy Najimy and Jennifer Coolidge to do it.