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Thursday, December 6, 2012

Five Great Christmas Movies

Written by Kirk Baird

The Christmas season is all about traditions, especially when it comes to holiday films. In addition to those annual viewings of classics including It’s a Wonderful Life, Miracle on 34th Street, and A Christmas Story, here are five other holiday treats worth the time.

Christmas in Connecticut (1945): In this warm holiday tale, Barbara Stanwyck is a food writer sorely lacking culinary and housekeeping skills whose deception may be exposed when her boss and a returning World War II soldier invite themselves to her home for a Christmas Day feast.

Nutcracker with Rudolf Nureyev (1968): This filmed performance features perhaps the greatest male ballet dancer in peak form in a celebrated interpretation of Tchaikovsky’s ballet masterpiece and holiday mainstay.

The Ref (1994): Denis Leary plays a cat burglar who breaks into a home on Christmas Eve and then must play mediator to a warring couple (Kevin Spacey and Judy Davis) and their family in this painfully funny R-rated dark comedy.

Un Conte de Noel (A Christmas Tale) (2008): Catherine Deneuve stars in this acerbic French comedy-drama about a highly dysfunctional and feuding family that gathers at the parents’ house for Christmas and learns the strong-willed matriarch has leukemia.

Arthur Christmas (2011): Santa’s clumsy son Arthur alternately ruins and then saves Christmas in this wondrous holiday classic. While audiences missed the film in theaters, Arthur Christmas deserves to be a staple of the season for years to come.

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