Should You Ask Your Partner To Spend The Holidays With You? Experts Weigh In

If you only started dating someone this year, you may be wondering whether you should ask them to spend the holidays with you or not. While the holiday season can bring you and your partner much closer together, is can also give your relationship some added stress. Since it’s going to be your first holiday season as a couple, you never know which way it’s going to go. With the holidays being right around the corner, it’s about that time to discuss your plans especially if you’re thinking of asking your partner to spend the holidays with you. But is your relationship actually ready for it this year?

“The holidays are stressful for everyone,” Ashley Campana, a matchmaker with Lisa Clampitt Matchmaking, tells Bustle. “Multiply that by two people together for the holidays, a dash of family, and a sprinkle of expectations, and it’s a likely scenario that the stress level will be higher than it would be alone.”

There’s no set time frame for how long you should be dating someone before you spend the holidays with them. As dating coach Anna Morgenstern, tells Bustle, “It’s less about how long you’ve been with your partner and more about how far the relationship has progressed.”

Every relationship moves at its own pace. While inviting your partner to come home for the holidays can seem like a harmless idea, navigating the holiday season in a new relationship can be really challenging. Here are some things you may want to consider first, according to experts.

1. Is Your Partner Ready To Meet Your Family?

Inviting your partner to spend the holidays with you may involve meeting your family for the first time.

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“If you just started dating, the last thing you want is your 92-year-old grandmother asking the both of you when you are getting married and reminding you that by your age, she had already delivered a child,” Dr. Sanam Hafeez, a neuropsychologist who specializes in relationships, tells Bustle. “No new relationship needs that pressure, as much as we love grandma.”

According to her, meeting the family is without a doubt the largest challenge of spending the holidays with a partner. There’s always that stress to impress, which can cause anxiety in the most confident of people. If your holiday tradition includes having a large family gathering or there are major cultural differences, it can be a little overwhelming. You want to make sure that your partner is ready and willing to handle whatever gets thrown their way.

2. Is Traveling In Your Partner’s Budget?

A 2018 Experian survey found that Americans spend an average of $930 on holiday travel. “New relationships walk the line of being new but committed, so holiday traveling can be a challenging aspect because of the expenses,” Hafeez says. Your partner may want to spend the holidays with you, but it’s important to be realistic. According to Hafeez, someone may ask themselves if they can really justify spending hundreds of dollars to travel, especially if the relationship is still pretty new. If you know that your partner is struggling financially, or if they’re saving up to buy something big, you may want to wait until next year.

3. Is Your Relationship Mature Enough?

You don't need to date someone for a long time before asking them to spend the holidays with you.

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There’s no set amount of time you should be dating someone before you decide to take them home for the holidays. Some people know they’re meant to be together after a month, and some people take years to figure that out. According to Hafeez, you can’t measure the maturity of a relationship in days or months. But you can assess it by asking yourself this one question: Am I proud to be with this person? “You can be happy with a new relationship but may not be confident enough to bring your partner around the family,” Hafeez says. When you’re confident in the status of your relationship and you know that your partner is going to stick around when things get tough, you’re ready to spend the holidays together. If not, that’s OK. “It’s completely valid to give yourself more time before bringing your significant other to the family holiday, especially if you have a birthday coming up a few months later,” Hafeez says.

4. Do You See A Future With Your Partner?

It’s nice to have someone you can bring along to your big holiday gathering. But the holiday season can have a way of making new relationships feel like they have to move faster than they’re actually ready for. According to Morgenstern, you should only introduce someone to your family that you truly see a long-term future with. Spending the holidays with someone can be a pretty big deal. “If you’re not completely sure about them, asking them to come home with you will mislead them with your intentions,” Morgenstern says. “Make sure you’re on the same page about your relationship before deciding to spend the holidays together.”

5. What Does Spending The Holidays Together Mean To Your Partner?

Talking about your holiday plans can strengthen your communication skills.

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“Spending the holidays together is generally an intimate activity that communicates you care about someone and intend to deepen the relationship,” marriage counselor Brent Sweitzer, LPC, tells Bustle. “But don’t assume it means the same thing to your partner as it does to you.”

Some people may see this as the next big step in the relationship, and others might see it as just another thing you can do together. It’s important to talk to your partner about your feelings and expectations. It can even open up a discussion about your family’s traditions and unspoken family rules. “This will set in place good communication habits for both of you about expectations (particularly around the holidays), regardless of whether the relationship becomes a fully committed one,” Sweitzer says.

As nice as it would be to spend the holidays with your partner, it’s important to consider if your relationship is actually ready for it first. If you feel like it’s the right time, talk to your partner. Having an open discussion with your partner can help you decide what’s best for your relationship this year.

 

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The Brutal Reason Why You’re Addicted to Dating Emotionally Unavailable Men

The toxic effect of chasing men who won’t give you what you want

When you crave romantic love, you can’t live without it. But, when you’re addicted to chasing emotionally unavailable men, love becomes intoxicating.

These men can drip feed you with bits of affection, which keeps you hanging on for more, even though they do not want a relationship. You can’t get enough of them, whereby you end up addicted to wanting someone who’s not that into you — a toxic love addiction or unrequited love.

Like a drug addiction, it all feels good at the beginning. Relationships can seem distorted through an altered perspective when you’re hanging out for it.

It all feels good until the intoxicating effects of the relationship start wearing off. After the rush and excitement, it all comes crashing down, until you want more to feel the same high.

You’ve become hooked on the relationship. But, what happens when the other person doesn’t want more? You can’t get enough of them, chasing them, and waiting for the next feel-good moment.

You can look towards men to make yourself feel good when you don’t feel good enough. You can project them to be everything you ever wanted. So, you end up getting hooked into feeling good about yourself, through the lens that you see them.

You can end up on a high from chasing someone who doesn’t want a relationship, due to the intoxicating feeling. The anticipation of seeing them excites you and overrides your sense of reality.

You may feel the urge for more and they don’t want it. Somehow, you get drawn to a person who is emotionally unavailable to you. You’re addicted to the excitement of chasing them. When you pine over them, you want them more, so you can feel good again.

When you are craving for romantic love, you might ignore the signs that you are not loved back. Having a love addiction can distort your perspective when you hold onto the hope or the fantasy of obtaining unmet and one-sided love.

As a relationship therapist, I hear the agony of unrequited love from those who feel stuck chasing men who don’t love them.

You must be honest with yourself and face the brutal truth when you are in love with someone who is not that into you. Otherwise, you can become blind sighted and in denial about the actual relationship.

So, why do you have a love addiction for men who are unobtainable in some way?

It is easy to stay attached because it feels better than accepting the reality that the relationship could be over.

Love is an addiction and it can feel good, even if it’s not good for you.

You do not want to acknowledge the actual truth, because you do not want to be alone, so you’ve created this fantasy that you are loved. You can project your hopes and fantasies onto them, feeling intense passion, that is one-sided. You see them as whatever you want them to be, to fulfill your unmet needs.

You can look to others to feel good about yourself when you feel not good enough. So, you end up getting hooked into feeling good about yourself, through the lens that you see them

You ignore the signs that love is one-sided because you cannot stop yourself from holding on. You can end up chasing them and put effort into a dead end relationship. They may even tell you the relationship is over, but you do not believe them.

You may even be misguided to think that if you fight for the relationship, you will convince them to love you back. Like an addict, you’ll do whatever it takes to get that high.

Having an addiction to unavailable men means you hold onto those who do not love you because it feels better than getting over them.

It can feel worse to go without — temporally.

The toxic effects of the addiction to pursuing unavailable men diminishes your self-worth and self-esteem, so you feel worse about yourself. This can cause many to put more effort into a dead-end relationship that goes nowhere.

Sometimes, it’s hard being honest with the situation. Your hopes and dreams can cause you to believe whatever you want, rather than see the truth.

You’ve become addicted to something that is toxic for you and became dependent on a relationship that doesn’t really exist.

You end up attracting men who do not want a relationship while sacrificing your chances of finding real love.

The only way to recover is to withdraw from the relationship and learn how to move on from the toxic love.

The truth is, you’ve become addicted when you get hit with the intoxicating feelings so that you end up wanting more. It can be hard to give up something that feels good but is not good for you.

So you settle for someone to escape the empty void within yourself, of feeling not good enough from unmet love. When you stop looking externally to feel good about yourself, and look within yourself, you can heal the addiction of loving someone who doesn’t love you back.

Nancy Carbone is a relationship therapist. If you notice you’re addicted to chasing emotionally unavailable men, you can schedule an appointment by contacting Nancy on her website at Counselling Service Melbourne, or follow her on social media for more tips and advice.

 

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How to Tell if Your Boyfriend Loves You: 16 Sure Signs He’s Smitten

You’re madly in love, but sometimes you catch yourself wondering how to tell if your boyfriend loves you too. By looking at the signs, you’ll know.

He loves me… he loves me not… wait, he probably loves me… he has to love me, right? I know exactly how wondering how to tell if your boyfriend loves you feels. And it’s a nerve-wracking experience.

You’re there giving him everything while at the same time, you’re wondering if he even feels the same way. Deep down you know how he feels. When you start looking at the signs and paying attention to your intuition, you know what’s going on.

How to tell if your boyfriend loves you

When it comes to people, specifically men, you can never really know what they’re thinking. A guy can tell you he loves you and not mean it or not tell you anything and secretly love you for years on end.

Ideally, just ask him how he feels about you, but I know how scary that can be. So, instead, why not look at how to tell if your boyfriend loves you? [Read: 25 signs he loves you even if he doesn’t say it out loud]

There are only so many signs a person can give you to show that they love you. All you need is to look at the right signs for a hint about what’s going on in their mind.

It’s time to find out how to tell if your boyfriend loves you.

#1 He told you. Of course, some people just say ‘I love you,’ when they feel any positive emotion. And they may not necessarily mean it. But, if he says it and you truly feel that it’s genuine, then you’re not wrong. You have your intuition and trust me, you should listen to it. [Read: All the signs he wants something serious with you and is ready to commit]

#2 He checks up on you. Listen, when it comes to the human race, we’re pretty selfish. We put ourselves first and make sure we’re taken care of. But, when we’re in love, things change. Yes, we’re still a priority, but now, there’s someone else who’s equally as important. If he’s checking up on you throughout the day, it’s because he cares and worries about you.

#3 He lights up when he sees you. When he sees you, his face completely changes. It’s like you instantly bring sunshine into his life.

And you know what, that’s because you do. Love is pure joy and happiness. When he looks at you, he can’t help but smile. If you see his eyes light up when he looks at you, it’s because he loves you. [Read: What does it feel like to be in love?]

#4 He sends you good morning text messages. Not a morning goes by where he’s not sending you a good morning text message. If he’s doing this, he’s completely hooked on you. Love is intense; it’s an obsession and not necessarily a bad one. If you’re the first person he thinks of when he wakes up, he’s in love with you. [Read: 20 reasons why a good morning text is so important]

#5 He gets into your life. He’s in your life. He knows all your friends and family, he goes to every dinner, he even will attend your brother’s soccer games on the weekends. In other words, he’s making sure he has a strong presence in your life. If he’s making this much effort, it’s not just to get in your pants.

#6 He goes out of his way for you. Maybe he already had plans or has been busy at work, but he’ll rearrange things around just to get a chance to see you. Whether he sees you for a couple of hours or minutes, he will go out of his way to spend as much time with you as possible. What do we call that? It’s love, baby.

#7 He treats you as a priority. We usually put ourselves first before other people. And, let’s not be naive, he still puts himself first, but he also prioritizes you. When he’s making decisions, he includes you in them, making sure you are on the same page. This is because he loves you. 

#8 He genuinely listens to you. When he asks you about your day or any question regarding your feelings, he listens. He doesn’t just ask it to fill time, he’s asking you because he genuinely wants to know how you’re feeling. A man who loves a woman is a man who cares about her feelings and all the small details happening in her life. [Read: 17 gestures that are louder than words when it comes to love]

#9 He doesn’t give up. It’s normal for couples to argue and disagree on things, but that doesn’t mean the relationship is supposed to end. Whatever problems you’re having, he doesn’t throw the towel in and call it quits. He puts 100% into the relationship every single day and never doubts that you two are going to make it.

#10 He asks for your opinion. But not only on simple questions like “does this shirt look good on me?” or “should I get the new iPhone?” I’m talking about real questions, questions regarding his job, family, or friends. If he consults you before making a decision, he respects your opinion and values what you have to say.

#11 He’s there when you need him. If a guy didn’t love you or at least wasn’t interested in you, he wouldn’t be there when you need him. But if he loves you, no what you need, he’ll go out of his way to make it happen. Whether your car broke down or you’re sick and need soup, he’s there. Now that is what we call love.

#12 He introduces you to his family. Let’s not ignore this one. Okay, if you met his family once, then don’t assume he’s madly in love with you. But if you see other signs and notice he’s taking you more to see his family, then he’s clearly developing some strong feelings for you. He wouldn’t be bringing you into his close circle unless he felt you were the one. [Read: How to charm your boyfriend’s parents when you meet them]

#13 He makes sure you’re in the loop. He is always making sure you’re updated on everything going on in his life. Even if it’s something you didn’t need to know, he makes sure you’re informed. When a man loves you, he wants you to be a part of his entire life, not just a piece of it. 

#14 He sees you. When a guy doesn’t love you, he doesn’t really see you. Okay, he sees you in the literal sense, but he misses the small details like the way you laugh or the face you make when you’re sad. When a man is in love with a woman, he notices everything. And when I say everything, I mean everything.

#15 He misses you when you’re not around. Whether it’s for five minutes or a couple of days, when you don’t see each other, he’s sad. Typically, men fall in love with a woman when she’s not around. You know the saying, absence makes the heart grow fonder.

If he’s always texting or calling you when you are apart, he probably can’t get enough of you. [Read: The 14 signs a guy really does miss you]

#16 He focuses on making you happy. What could say love more than this? If his main goal is to make you happy, he clearly loves you. No man would waste their time making sure someone is happy unless he truly cared about the person. If you’re doing something that makes you unhappy and you tell him, he’ll change it right away.

 

Thank you for reading my blog. Please read, like, comment, and most of all follow Phicklephilly. I publish every day.

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The Best Christmas Movies Of All Time

From Home Alone and Elf to classics like Miracle on 34th Street, I’ve made my list of great holiday films and checked it at least twice. Now, to all you nice boys and girls out there, we present the Best Christmas Movies ever!

Christmas has come to represent different things to people over the years, and the movies here reflect that in kind. If you’re traditional and feeling nostalgic, you’ll be pleased to see where It’s A Wonderful Life and Holiday Inn made it on our list of top holiday films. If this time of the year reminds you of sitting around the TV, eagerly awaiting those annual specials, look out for A Charlie Brown Christmas and How the Grinch Stole Christmas. There’s horror (Black Christmas), comedy (Trading Places), horror and comedy (Gremlins), and even a superhero covered in tinsel somewhere (Batman Returns). For those with an independent streak to celebrate, check out Tangerine and Carol. Meanwhile, Netflix has made great strides in the Kris Kringle quadrant with The Christmas Chronicles and Klaus. And if Christmas means traveling somewhere you don’t want to be, stuck in a building with people you don’t like, have we got the ultimate movie for you: Die Hard! Ho ho ho, now we have a complete list of great Christmas movies.

Wondering how we put this Christmas movie list together? Every movie on the list is Fresh and plays around with the spirit of Christmas and the holidays as a central theme. Then we sorted them all by our ranked formula, which factors in the movie’s release year its number of reviews, to make the ultimate list of holiday films that melted even the most cynical critics’ hearts.

And now you’re ready to enter a wonderland of cinematic history, with the 58 Best Christmas Movies ever!

 

#58
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: The 1947 holiday classic Miracle on 34th Street is transplanted to the 1990s with few changes in this family-oriented remake…. [More]
Directed By: Les Mayfield

 

THE PREACHER’S WIFE (1996)
60%

#57
Critics Consensus: Solid performances and a steady directorial hand help The Preacher’s Wife offer some reliably heartwarming – albeit fairly predictable – holiday cheer.
Synopsis: An angel wonders if love can be Heaven on Earth in this family-themed romantic fantasy. Rev. Henry Biggs (Courtney B…. [More]
Directed By: Penny Marshall

 

#56
Critics Consensus: Viewers seeking a fresh holiday viewing option — or those simply in the mood for Santa Kurt Russell — should find The Christmas Chronicles well worth a yuletide stream.
Synopsis: THE CHRISTMAS CHRONICLES, a holiday adventure from producer Chris Columbus (“Home Alone”, “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone”) and director… [More]
Directed By: Clay Kaytis

 

LOVE ACTUALLY (2003)
64%

#55
Critics Consensus: A sugary tale overstuffed with too many stories. Still, the cast charms.
Synopsis: All of London is in love — or longing to be — in Four Weddings and a Funeral writer Richard… [More]
Directed By: Richard Curtis

 

KRAMPUS (2015)
66%

#54
Critics Consensus: Krampus is gory good fun for fans of non-traditional holiday horror with a fondness for Joe Dante’s B- movie classics, even if it doesn’t have quite the savage bite its concept calls for.
Synopsis: When his dysfunctional family clashes over the holidays, young Max is disillusioned and turns his back on Christmas. Little does… [More]
Directed By: Michael Dougherty

 

Critics Consensus: While Christmas Vacation may not be the most disciplined comedy, it’s got enough laughs and good cheer to make for a solid seasonal treat.
Synopsis: This is the third in the “National Lampoon” series about the Griswold family. In this sequel, the Griswolds must deal… [More]

 

Critics Consensus: Still raunchy, still irreverent, and still hit-and-miss, this Harold & Kumar outing also has a Christmas miracle: The audience gets to see the sweeter side of the duo.
Synopsis: Following years of growing apart, Harold Lee (Cho) and Kumar Patel (Penn) have replaced each other with new friends and… [More]
Directed By: Todd Strauss-Schulson

 

#51
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: A 1983 animated version of the Dickens classic, with Mickey Mouse as Bob Cratchit and Scrooge McDuck as the miserly… [More]
Directed By: Burny Mattinson

 

THE NIGHT BEFORE (2015)
68%

#50
Critics Consensus: The Night Before provokes enough belly laughs to qualify as a worthwhile addition to the list of Christmas comedies worth revisiting, even if it isn’t quite as consistent as the classics.
Synopsis: Ethan (Joseph Gordon-Levitt), Isaac (Seth Rogen) and Chris (Anthony Mackie) have been friends since childhood, and for a decade, their… [More]
Directed By: Jonathan Levine

 

HOME ALONE (1990)
65%

#49
Critics Consensus: Home Alone uneven but frequently funny premise stretched unreasonably thin is buoyed by Macaulay Culkin’s cute performance and strong supporting stars.
Synopsis: Home Alone is the highly successful and beloved family comedy about a young boy named Kevin (Macaulay Culkin) who is… [More]
Directed By: Chris Columbus

 

FROSTY THE SNOWMAN (1969)
73%

#48
Critics Consensus: Frosty the Snowman is a jolly, happy sing-along that will delight children with its crisp animation and affable title character, who makes an indelible impression with his corncob pipe, button nose, and eyes made out of coal.
Synopsis: This special release celebrates the 45th anniversary of an animated Christmas classic, Frosty the Snowman. First airing on CBS, the… [More]

 

THE BEST MAN HOLIDAY (2013)
71%

#47
Critics Consensus: The Best Man Holiday manages honest laughs out of broad humor, and affects convincing drama from a deeply conventional plot.
Synopsis: After nearly 15 years apart, Taye Diggs (television’s Private Practice), Nia Long (Soul Food), Morris Chestnut (Kick-Ass 2), Harold Perrineau… [More]
Directed By: Malcolm D. Lee

 

SCROOGED (1988)
71%

#46
Critics Consensus: Scrooged gets by with Bill Murray and a dash of holiday spirit, although it’s hampered by a markedly conflicted tone and an undercurrent of mean-spiritedness.
Synopsis: A darkly comic and surreal contemporization of Charles Dickens’s A Christmas Carol, this effects-heavy Bill Murray holiday vehicle from 1988… [More]
Directed By: Richard Donner

 

THE SANTA CLAUSE (1994)
71%

#45
Critics Consensus: The Santa Clause is utterly undemanding, but it’s firmly rooted in the sort of good old-fashioned holiday spirit missing from too many modern yuletide films.
Synopsis: Television sitcom star Tim Allen made his big screen debut with this light, family-friendly holiday comedy. Allen stars as Scott… [More]
Directed By: John Pasquin

 

BLACK CHRISTMAS (1974)
71%

#44
Critics Consensus: The rare slasher with enough intelligence to wind up the tension between bloody outbursts, Black Christmas offers fiendishly enjoyable holiday viewing for genre fans.
Synopsis: Black Christmas is an effective, frightening above average slasher movie with a good cast and a frightening, surprise ending. Barb… [More]
Directed By: Bob Clark

 

THE REF (1994)
72%

#43
Critics Consensus: Undeniably uneven and too dark for some, The Ref nonetheless boasts strong turns from Denis Leary, Judy Davis, and Kevin Spacey, as well as a sharply funny script.
Synopsis: Caroline and Lloyd (Judy Davis and Kevin Spacey) are a married couple constantly at each other’s throats, masters at crafting… [More]
Directed By: Ted Demme

 

Critics Consensus: The poignant humanity on display in Joyeux Noel makes its sentimentality forgivable.
Synopsis: Scottish, French and German troops declare a spontaneous Christmas Eve truce in the trenches of World War I in this… [More]
Directed By: Christian Carion

 

HAPPY CHRISTMAS (2014)
76%

#41
Critics Consensus: Intelligent, well-acted, and satisfyingly low-key, Happy Christmas marks another step in prolific filmmaker Joe Swanberg’s creative evolution.
Synopsis: When Jenny (Anna Kendrick), a hard partying 20-something moves in with Kelly (Melanie Lynskey), a budding novelist, her film director… [More]
Directed By: Joe Swanberg

 

#40
Critics Consensus: It may not be the finest version of Charles Dickens’ tale to grace the screen, but The Muppet Christmas Carol is funny and heartwarming, and serves as a good introduction to the story for young viewers.
Synopsis: Brian Henson, the son of Muppet founder Jim Henson, took over directing duties after the untimely death of his father… [More]
Directed By: Brian Henson

 

#39
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: It’s the season of joy, peace, and goodwill… unless you live in Bailey Downs. Last Christmas Eve, two teens came… [More]

 

LET IT SNOW (2019)
81%

#38
Critics Consensus: Comfortably cliché, Let It Snow wears its influences on its sleeve, but works anyway thanks an excellent ensemble and just the right amount of holiday cheer.
Synopsis: When a snowstorm hits a small midwestern town on Christmas Eve, a group of high school seniors find their friendships… [More]
Directed By: Luke Snellin

 

WHITE CHRISTMAS (1954)
77%

#37
Critics Consensus: It may be too sweet for some, but this unabashedly sentimental holiday favorite is too cheerful to resist.
Synopsis: This Christmas classic starring Bing Crosby is a romantic tale that takes place in a Vermont lodge- where it is… [More]
Directed By: Michael Curtiz

 

#36
Critics Consensus: Anna and the Apocalypse finds fresh brains and a lot of heart in the crowded zombie genre – not to mention a fun genre mashup populated by rootable characters.
Synopsis: A zombie apocalypse threatens the sleepy town of Little Haven — at Christmas — forcing Anna and her friends to… [More]
Directed By: John McPhail

 

#35
Critics Consensus: While You Were Sleeping is built wholly from familiar ingredients, but assembled with such skill — and with such a charming performance from Sandra Bullock — that it gives formula a good name.
Synopsis: This offbeat romantic comedy has some rather dark underpinnings that add, rather than detract from the fun. It is the… [More]
Directed By: Jon Turteltaub

 

BAD SANTA (2003)
79%

#34
Critics Consensus: A gloriously rude and gleefully offensive black comedy, Bad Santa isn’t for everyone, but grinches will find it uproariously funny.
Synopsis: The Christmas season just got a lot less joyous in this very dark comedy. Willie T. Stokes (Billy Bob Thornton)… [More]
Directed By: Terry Zwigoff

 

Critics Consensus: The Man Who Invented Christmas adds holiday magic to the writing of A Christmas Carol, putting a sweetly revisionist spin on the story behind a classic yuletide tale.
Synopsis: The Man Who Invented Christmas tells of the magical journey that led to the creation of Ebenezer Scrooge (Christopher Plummer),… [More]
Directed By: Bharat Nalluri

 

BATMAN RETURNS (1992)
80%

#32
Critics Consensus: Director Tim Burton’s dark, brooding atmosphere, Michael Keaton’s work as the tormented hero, and the flawless casting of Danny DeVito as The Penguin and Christopher Walken as, well, Christopher Walken make the sequel better than the first.
Synopsis: In the second of the blockbuster Batman films, the legendary hero does battle against the mysterious Cat Woman and the… [More]
Directed By: Tim Burton

 

THE BISHOP’S WIFE (1948)
84%

#31
Critics Consensus: The Bishop’s Wife succeeds thanks to the strength of winning performances from a stellar cast, which includes Cary Grant and Loretta Young.
Synopsis: A harassed bishop’s prayers are answered when an angel (Cary Grant) is sent from heaven to help him raise money… [More]
Directed By: Henry Koster

 

ELF (2003)
84%

#30
Critics Consensus: A movie full of Yuletide cheer, Elf is a spirited, good-natured family comedy, and it benefits greatly from Will Ferrell’s funny and charming performance as one of Santa’s biggest helpers.
Synopsis: For his sophomore stab at directing, actor/writer/director Jon Favreau (Swingers, Made), took on this holiday comedy starring Saturday Night Live-alum… [More]
Directed By: Jon Favreau

 

#29
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: War hero Dennis Morgan becomes the object of a publicity stunt staged by magazine publisher Sidney Greenstreet. The corpulent print… [More]
Directed By: Peter Godfrey

 

A CHRISTMAS CAROL (1951)
85%

#28
Critics Consensus: The 1951 adaptation of Charles Dickens’ timeless classic is perhaps the most faithful film version — and Alastair Sim’s performance as Scrooge is not to be missed.
Synopsis: Widely considered to be the definitive of the many film versions of Charles Dickens’ classic novel is this 1951 British… [More]
Directed By: Brian Desmond Hurst

 

Critics Consensus: A sharp black comedy about a chaotic family holiday gathering, A Christmas Tale is always involving, thanks to an impressive ensemble cast.
Synopsis: The devastating reverberations of a profound tragedy echo through generations of a long-suffering French family in this emotional family drama… [More]
Directed By: Arnaud Desplechin

 

GREMLINS (1984)
85%

#26
Critics Consensus: Whether you choose to see it as a statement on consumer culture or simply a special effects-heavy popcorn flick, Gremlins is a minor classic.
Synopsis: “Don’t expose him to bright light. Don’t ever get him wet. And don’t ever, ever feed him after midnight.” This… [More]
Directed By: Joe Dante

 

TRADING PLACES (1983)
87%

#25
Critics Consensus: Featuring deft interplay between Eddie Murphy and Dan Aykroyd, Trading Places is an immensely appealing social satire.
Synopsis: The “nature-nurture” theory that motivated so many Three Stooges comedies is the basis of John Landis’s hit comedy. The fabulously… [More]
Directed By: John Landis

 

BETTER WATCH OUT (2017)
89%

#24
Critics Consensus: Carried by its charismatic young cast, Better Watch Out is an adorably sinister holiday horror film.
Synopsis: This holiday season, you may be home, but you’re not alone… In this fresh and gleefully twisted spin on home-invasion… [More]
Directed By: Chris Peckover

 

TOKYO GODFATHERS (2003)
90%

#23
Critics Consensus: Beautiful and substantive, Tokyo Godfathers adds a moving — and somewhat unconventional — entry to the animated Christmas canon.
Synopsis: Tokyo Godfathers, the acclaimed holiday classic from master director Satoshi Kon (Paprika, Perfect Blue), returns to theaters in a brand-new… [More]
Directed By: Satoshi KonShôgo Furuya

 

KISS KISS, BANG BANG (2005)
86%

#22
Critics Consensus: Tongue-in-cheek satire blends well with entertaining action and spot-on performances in this dark, eclectic neo-noir homage.
Synopsis: A murder mystery brings together a private eye, a struggling actress, and a thief masquerading as an actor…. [More]
Directed By: Shane Black

 

Critics Consensus: Rare Exports is an unexpectedly delightful crossbreed of deadpan comedy and Christmas horror.
Synopsis: It’s the eve of Christmas in northern Finland, and an ‘archeological’ dig has just unearthed the real Santa Claus. But… [More]
Directed By: Jalmari Helander

 

A CHRISTMAS STORY (1983)
89%

#20
Critics Consensus: Both warmly nostalgic and darkly humorous, A Christmas Story deserves its status as a holiday perennial.
Synopsis: In the 1940’s, in the town of Hammond, 9-year-old Ralphie wants one thing for Christmas — an official Red Ryder… [More]
Directed By: Bob Clark

 

LITTLE WOMEN (1994)
92%

#19
Critics Consensus: Thanks to a powerhouse lineup of talented actresses, Gillian Armstrong’s take on Louisa May Alcott’s Little Women proves that a timeless story can succeed no matter how many times it’s told.
Synopsis: This newest version of Louisa May Alcott’s tender novel is considered to be among the best as it chronicles the… [More]
Directed By: Gillian Armstrong

 

EDWARD SCISSORHANDS (1990)
90%

#18
Critics Consensus: The first collaboration between Johnny Depp and Tim Burton, Edward Scissorhands is a magical modern fairy tale with gothic overtones and a sweet center.
Synopsis: Tim Burton’s Edward Scissorhands opens as an eccentric inventor (Vincent Price) lovingly assembles a synthetic youth named Edward (Johnny Depp)…. [More]
Directed By: Tim Burton

 

KLAUS (2019)
94%

#17
Critics Consensus: Beautiful hand-drawn animation and a humorous, heartwarming narrative make Klaus an instant candidate for holiday classic status.
Synopsis: When Jesper (Jason Schwartzman) distinguishes himself as the postal academy’s worst student, he is stationed on a frozen island above… [More]
Directed By: Sergio Pablos

 

Critics Consensus: Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer is a yule-tide gem that bursts with eye-popping iconography, a spirited soundtrack, and a heart-warming celebration of difference.
Synopsis: This stop-motion animagic version of the classic Christmas tale adds a bit of a twist when Rudolph encounters an abominable… [More]
Directed By: Maury LawsLarry Roemer

ARTHUR CHRISTMAS (2011)
92%

#15
Critics Consensus: Aardman Animations broadens their humor a bit for Arthur Christmas, a clever and earnest holiday film with surprising emotional strength.
Synopsis: The 3D, CG-animated family comedy Arthur Christmas, an Aardman production for Sony Pictures Animation, at last reveals the incredible, never-before… [More]
Directed By: Sarah SmithBarry Cook

 

DIE HARD (1988)
94%

#14
Critics Consensus: Its many imitators (and sequels) have never come close to matching the taut thrills of the definitive holiday action classic.
Synopsis: It’s Christmas time in L.A., and there’s an employee party in progress on the 30th floor of the Nakatomi Corporation… [More]
Directed By: John McTiernan

 

REMEMBER THE NIGHT (1940)
100%

#13
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: With a deft blending of humor, sentimentality and romance, this Preston Sturges-penned comedy centers on the romance between a caring… [More]
Directed By: Mitchell Leisen

 

BABES IN TOYLAND (1934)
100%

#12
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Two bumbling apprentices to the master toymaker of Toyland try to raise money to help Little Bo-Peep and her sweetheart… [More]

 

TANGERINE (2015)
96%

#11
Critics Consensus: Tangerine shatters casting conventions and its filmmaking techniques are up-to-the-minute, but it’s an old-fashioned comedy at heart — and a pretty wonderful one at that.
Synopsis: A working girl tears through Tinseltown on Christmas Eve searching for the pimp who broke her heart. (C) Magnolia… [More]
Directed By: Sean Baker (II)

 

CAROL (2015)
94%

#10
Critics Consensus: Shaped by Todd Haynes’ deft direction and powered by a strong cast led by Cate Blanchett and Rooney Mara, Carol lives up to its groundbreaking source material.
Synopsis: In this adaptation of the novel “The Price of Salt” by Patricia Highsmith, Therese (Rooney Mara), a young department-store clerk… [More]
Directed By: Todd Haynes

 

MEET ME IN ST. LOUIS (1944)
100%

#9
Critics Consensus: A disarmingly sweet musical led by outstanding performances from Judy Garland and Margaret O’Brien, Meet Me in St. Louis offers a holiday treat for all ages.
Synopsis: Sally Benson’s short stories about the turn-of-the-century Smith family of St. Louis were tackled by a battalion of MGM screenwriters,… [More]
Directed By: Vincente Minnelli

 

LITTLE WOMEN (2019)
95%

#8
Critics Consensus: With a stellar cast and a smart, sensitive retelling of its classic source material, Greta Gerwig’s Little Women proves some stories truly are timeless.
Synopsis: Writer-director Greta Gerwig (Lady Bird) has crafted a Little Women that draws on both the classic novel and the writings… [More]
Directed By: Greta Gerwig

 

Critics Consensus: The Nightmare Before Christmas is a stunningly original and visually delightful work of stop-motion animation.
Synopsis: Despite having recently presided over a very successful Halloween, Jack Skellington, aka the Pumpkin King, is bored with his job… [More]
Directed By: Henry SelickTim Burton

 

Critics Consensus: How the Grinch Stole Christmas brings an impressive array of talent to bear on an adaptation that honors a classic holiday story — and has rightfully become a yuletide tradition of its own.
Synopsis: Chuck Jones’ animated version of the classic Dr. Seuss book How the Grinch Stole Christmas originally aired on television in… [More]
Directed By: Chuck JonesBen Washam

 

#5
Critics Consensus: Deftly directed by Ernst Lubitsch from a smart, funny script by Samson Raphaelson, The Shop Around the Corner is a romantic comedy in the finest sense of the term.
Synopsis: The Shop Around the Corner is adapted from the Hungarian play by Nikolaus (Miklos) Laszlo. Budapest gift-shop clerk Alfred Kralik… [More]
Directed By: Ernst Lubitsch

 

HOLIDAY INN (1942)
100%

#4
Critics Consensus: With the combined might of Bing Crosby, Fred Astaire, and Irving Berlin working in its favor, Holiday Inn is a seasonal classic — not least because it introduced “White Christmas” to the world.
Synopsis: Music by Irving Berlin, songs by Bing Crosby and dancing by Fred Astaire all add up to a really delightful… [More]
Directed By: Mark Sandrich

 

#3
Critics Consensus: Irrefutable proof that gentle sentimentalism can be the chief ingredient in a wonderful film, Miracle on 34th Street delivers a warm holiday message without resorting to treacle.
Synopsis: Edmund Gwenn plays Kris Kringle, a bearded old gent who is the living image of Santa Claus. Serving as a… [More]
Directed By: George Seaton

 

#2
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Christmastime is here. Happiness and cheer. And for Peanuts fans everywhere, it just wouldn’t be Christmas without this classic holiday… [More]
Directed By: Bill MelendezPhil Roman

 

#1
Critics Consensus: The holiday classic to define all holiday classics, It’s a Wonderful Life is one of a handful of films worth an annual viewing.
Synopsis: This is director Frank Capra’s classic bittersweet comedy/drama about George Bailey (James Stewart), the eternally-in-debt guiding force of a bank… [More]
Directed By: Frank Capra

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