While these movies aren’t traditionally Christmas movies, the argument can be made that they should be watched during the holiday season when you’re tired of Charlie Brown, Rudolph, and Scrooge. They’re Christmas movies not just because they are set during the holiday season, but because they have a message for the holidays. 

Die Hard

Why it’s a Christmas movie:

An office Christmas party is crashed by thieves masquerading as terrorists. “Now I have a machine gun. Ho – Ho – Ho.” The theme: overcoming obstacles to spend time with family.

Batman Returns

Why it’s a Christmas movie:

Gotham’s Christmas tree is lit when the Ice Princess is murdered by the Penguin. “Mistletoe can be deadly if you eat it. A kiss can be even deadlier if you mean it.” The theme: capitalist greed ruins the holidays. 

Edward Scissorhands

Why it’s a Christmas movie:

Ice sculptures, toxic Christianity, trimming trees. Theme: the holidays are difficult for family members who are treated as outcasts.

The Long Kiss Goodnight

Why it’s a Christmas movie:

Gina Davis remembers she’s an assassin because of holiday traffic. The villain plans to set off a chemical bomb during a Christmas parade in order to frame terrorists. A man is hung from Christmas lights while on fire. Theme: nothing is more important than family.

Gremlins

Why it’s a Christmas movie:

A unique gift turns out to be a big hassle. No one likes uninvited carolers. Not everyone loves Christmas – for some of us it’s a yearly reminder of how our dad died in the chimney dressed as Santa. Dad gets home just in time not to have to do anything to help. The theme: a pet is a risky gift idea.

L.A. Confidential

Why it’s a Christmas movie:

Cops beat up a bunch of prisoners during a drunken Christmas party. “Bloody Christmas” actually happened in 1951 at the L.A. police station. The theme: if you’re naughty, you’ll get coal in your stocking and a bullet in your back

Babe

Why it’s a Christmas movie:

“Dinner means death. Death means carnage. Christmas means carnage.” The duck understands the dark side of the holidays and that Babe could become the Christmas ham. The theme: not everyone loves the holidays.

Kiss Kiss Bang Bang

Why it’s a Christmas movie:

Robert Downey Jr. robs a toy store and Michelle Monaghan wears a velvet Santa dress. The theme: during the holidays sometimes you have to pretend to be someone you’re not. 

The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe

Why it’s a Christmas movie: 

Because of an allegorical Satan, “It’s always winter but never Christmas.” Father Christmas is a way better name than Santa Claus and he brings children the gifts of warfare. The theme: Turkish delight isn’t worth dying for. 

Trading Places

Why it’s a Christmas movie: 

Another movie with a drunken Christmas party. Two old rich guys see human beings as play things to gamble on. The theme: Scrooges who commit stock fraud will become homeless thanks to a prostitute and a gorilla. God bless us, everyone. 

Rocky IV

Why it’s a Christmas movie: 

America versus Russia in a slugfest on Christmas day. Rocky decks Ivan and pretty much ends the Cold War and even the Russian government officials love Rocky’s scrappy self-made, hardworking heroics. The theme: America wins, especially on Christmas.

Lethal Weapon

Why it’s a Christmas movie: 

A shootout at a Christmas tree farm. Gary Busey and Mel Gibson slug it out in a yard decked out with Christmas lights. The theme: make a place at the holiday table for people with mental issues, it might save their lives. Just hide the Menorah. 

By Jason

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