Does Nightmare Before Christmas Count as a Christmas Movie?

Current Theme Song (aka what's playing on my ipod right now): Always Something There To Remind Me by Naked Eyes.

photo by carlibux

So I've been giving a lot of thought to this Ultimate Non-Christmas Christmas Movie List, and thanks to the magic of the internet**, I've come up with several more titles to please just about *ahem* die hard fan. Pun intended as you will. :)

But here is one that gave me a lot of pause. Is The Nightmare Before Christmas a Christmas movie? I mean, it has "Christmas" in the title for heaven's sake, but it deals strongly in Halloweentown and has the walking undead as a protagonist. I played ping-pong with this idea for a solid hour (this is serious stuff, you guys). And as sad as it is, and as much as it breaks my heart, The Nightmare Before Christmas IS a Christmas movie. He dresses up as Santa, delivers presents, and a good portion of the film is leading up to Christmas Eve.

So it is a Halloween and Christmas movie in equal shares and by all logical reasoning should be watched in November so as to not interfere with this love child's custody or visitation rights.

But seriously, I still love you, Jack. You're the happiest, most innocent hardcore skeleton in existence.

And without further adieu, I give you the extended list which is also being added to the original post. There is going to be one on here you are going to be very surprised I am not calling a "Christmas" movie. For the impatient ones, scroll down to the bottom. :) If you think of any more, add a comment. I would love to add them.

Steel Magnolias
Cast Away
Better off Dead
Sleepless in Seattle
Gone with the Wind
Staglag 17
The Thin Man (1934)
The Rocking Horse Winner (1949)
You've Got Mail (and the 1940 The Shop Around the Corner)
Emma (Gwyneth Paltrow version)
Lethal Weapon
L.A Confidential
Baby Face (1933)
An Affair to Remember
Le Grande Illusion
Kiss Kiss Bang Bang
All That Heaven Allows
Citizen Kane
The Family Man
American Psycho
Meet John Doe (1940)
The City of Lost Children
The Dead (1987)
Eyes Wide Shut
The Shining
Rocky IV
Trading Places
The Long Kiss Goodnight
Die Hard 2
It's a Wonderful Life

Oh yes, you read that right. It's a Wonderful Life. The classic hallmark of countless hours of reruns and 24-hour marathons. But it is not a "Christmas" movie any more than Cast Away is just because it happens to start at a Christmas party. It is about George's Bailey's life and how important he is to a community that happens to take place during Christmas one year. Think of how long it takes to get that fateful Christmas Eve. We see all of George Bailey's childhood, watch him fall in love, and get at least halfway through the movie before that night. Even the director, Frank Cappa, didn't consider it a Christmas movie when he made it. So there you go. You have a crazy amount of pickins if you've seen Frosty the Snowman one too many times. :)

**But I am so stinking proud to say that I have yet to find Jumanji, Miss Potter, or The Big Year on any other Christmas Movie list than here. Or Lady and the Tramp for that matter. Stinking proud, people.


Kimberly said...
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Kimberly said...

How about The Holiday? It takes place over Christmas, but it's hardly a Christmas movie.

Heather Zundel said...

Sadly, I don't think The Holiday can count as a Christmas movie. It is about them escaping so they won't be alone at Christmas and finding love there. That and the name, plus that is came out during the holiday season makes me think that is was intended as a Christmas movie. :(

Kimberly said...

I don't know. It seems to fall under that "It's a Wonderful Life Category." It's a love story that happens to take place over Christmas. There's very little actually Christmas related in it. Though there is a Hanuka party. I would never categorize it as a Christmas movie. :D