15 Great Holiday Family Movies to Watch

Pop some popcorn and watch some holiday magic together.


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Watching holiday movies is a great way to get into the spirit of the season. It’s one of those traditions along with decorating your home, baking Christmas cookies or frying Hanukkah latkes. Whether you are in the mood for a classic movie like It’s a Wonderful Life, an animated movie like The Nightmare Before Christmas, or a children’s favorite like Frosty the Snowman, Goodnet’s got you covered. So, snuggle together, pop some popcorn, and get ready to watch some holiday magic together.

The Grinch

This 2018 remake of the Dr. Suess classic tale about the Grinch is a computer animated movie that is sure to please. Benedict Cumberbatch is the voice of this famous grump who hates Christmas. The Grinch can be streamed on Netflix or rented from Amazon Prime.

It's a Wonderful Life

No Christmas is complete without watching Frank Capra’s original 1946 fantasy film. Starring Jimmy Stewart as George Bailey, the man who gave up his dream to help others, It's a Wonderful Life is considered one of the greatest films ever. You can stream it from Amazon Prime or catch it on TV.

Frosty the Snowman

This jolly sing-along snowman with a corncob pipe, a button nose, and two eyes made out of coal comes alive in this 1969 children’s Christmas favorite. You can stream Frosty the Snowman on Apple TV or purchase it from Amazon.

The Last Holiday

This 2006 remake of the classic film with the same name stars Queen Latifa. The Last Holiday is a bittersweet story about a woman who quits her job after she is diagnosed with a terminal illness to live her dreams. You can stream on Netflix or rent from Amazon Prime.

Home Alone

It’s been 30 years since this most-watched Christmas movie was a box office smash hit. Starring Macaulay Culklin as a boy who defends his home against bandits after he is accidently left home alone. The film was called a “Christmas black comedy for children,” by the New York Times. Rent or buy Home Alone from Amazon.


This 2019 English – Spanish Netflix original is the 2D animated alternative origin story of Santa Claus. The plot of Klaus involves a postman stationed in the Far North who befriends Klaus, a reclusive toymaker. Watch this family friendly video on Netflix.

A Christmas Carol

This 1951 adaptation of Charles Dickens’ classic Christmas story is a must see. Starring Alastair Sim as Ebenezer Scrooge who hates Christmas, the ghosts of Christmas past, present, and future get him to change his ways. Stream A Christmas Carol from Hulu or Amazon.


This 2001 romantic comedy is set in a snowy New York during the holiday season. Starring John Cusack and Kate Beckinsale, who meet at Bloomingdale’s shopping for gloves, Serendipity shows that some things are meant to be. Rent or purchase on Amazon Prime.

Polar Express

The 2004 Polar Express is based on the children’s book of the same name by Chris Van Allsburg. The digital adaptation featuring Tom Hanks is about a little boy who takes a magical train ride to the North Pole. You can rent or buy this family friendly film on Amazon.

Miracle on 34th Street

This 1947 Christmas favorite puts Kris Kringle on trial in New York City. Miracle on 34th Street will make nonbelievers think Santa Claus is real. Watch this original black and white movie or check out the 1994  version on Disney Plus. Rent or purchase from Amazon.

The Hebrew Hammer

This 2003 cult-favorite flick, starring Adam Goldberg, is about a Jewish blaxploitation crime fighter known as the Hebrew Hammer who has to save Hanukkah and Kwanzaa from the evil son of Santa Claus. Some of The Hebrew Hammer takes place in Israel and the final battle is fought at the North Pole. Watch it on Amazon Prime in the US.

The Christmas Chronicles

Kurt Russel plays Santa Claus in this 2018 action film where it is up to two kids to save Santa. They hide in Santa’s sleigh but it malfunctions and crashes leaving the kids to deliver the gifts. The Christmas Chronicles and newly released Christmas Chronicles 2 can be streamed on Netflix.

A Charlie Brown Christmas

For Peanuts fans young and old, it wouldn’t be Christmas without A Charlie Brown Christmas. This animated TV special that first aired in 1965 features all the characters you know and love so well. You can watch this on the Apple TV app through December 15, 2020.

The Nightmare Before Christmas

This 1993 Tim Burton animated musical fantasy film has a dark side so it is not for younger children. In The Nightmare Before Christmas, Jack Skellington from Halloween Town goes through a portal  to Christmas Town and becomes obsessed with Christmas. You can rent or buy from Amazon Prime.

The National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation

This 1989 holiday comedy about the Griswold family stars Chevy Chase. The third installment of National Lampoon's vacation series has become a “modern classic” Christmas movie and it is enjoyable enough to watch every year. You can stream The National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation on Direct TV, Amazon, Apple and YouTube.