It’s finally the season of stuffing your faces with whatever you want. Also known as my favorite time of year. Great Christmas movies are just an added bonus.
Recently, I’ve realized that everyone loves classic Christmas movies like It’s a Wonderful Life and Elf. Therefore, there’s no reason for me to make a list filled with those when there are already countless others. So, I’ve compiled a list of Christmas movies that aren’t as well-known. But they’ll still give you that Christmas spirit we all need.
1. Operation Christmas
First is Operation Christmas, which stars one of my faves, Tricia Helfer. Hallmark movies are generally pretty basic story-wise, but this one tugged at my heartstrings. It’s a story about falling in love with an army man and the sacrifices that come with it. Because it’s a Hallmark movie, it obviously has a happy ending. However, it’s done in a more realistic way. Helfer’s character, Olivia, constantly wonders if she has what it takes. Being with a man in the army has its obstacles so it’s a fair sentiment. It’s easy to say true love persists, but realistically, this life can take its toll. This relationship consists of a lot of wondering and waiting for someone to come home. And you can’t even be mad about it because they’re out fighting for our country.
The other thing that struck me is the fact that they address how severely undervalued veterans are in the U.S. Which is ironic because the country spends most of its money on the military. Military families don’t nearly get enough credit, aid, or rehabilitation but they do address it in this movie. In fact, Olivia and Scott (her love interest) organize a big fundraiser to help veterans and their families. Christmas just happens to be the backdrop. The fact that the donation box is so empty is what jump-starts Olivia’s desire to help. And that’s when she gets Scott to help. So while this is a Hallmark movie, the story goes deeper than expected. Plus, Tricia Helfer and Marc Blucas have great onscreen chemistry.
2. Angry Angel
Now, I only watched this one recently, but it doesn’t take away how good it is. Angry Angel is about an angel trying to get into heaven by racking up points with miracles. This movie stars Brenda Song, AKA London Tiptop from my all-time favorite Disney Channel show, Suite Life of Zack and Cody, and Jason Biggs, who plays (an exaggerated version of) himself. It’s an interesting concept where angels get another chance to live among us. All while being forced to leave their old life behind. But, as Brenda’s character proves in this movie, it can be hard to leave behind. Especially when your life was cut short. It’s a sweet story about moving on and being content with the journey. All of which happens around Christmas time.
3. Mistletoe in Manhattan
Yes, this is another Hallmark movie and another Tricia Helfer movie. But favorites aside, Mistletoe in Manhattan is really about Mrs. Claus trying to get a couple back together. But it’s all done to help show her husband (AKA, Santa Claus) that the Christmas spirit still exists. It’s a cute story that’s targeted towards a younger audience, but still enjoyable for adults. Basically, Mrs. Claus becomes this family’s live-in nanny for a couple of days. Then, she figures out that the parents are still in love, despite their upcoming divorce. So she tries to get them back together with the kids’ help. Simplistic as it may sound, it’s a reliable Hallmark Christmas movie. And sometimes, that’s enough around the holidays.
4. Rise of the Guardians
I remember watching this movie for the first time in theaters. I went to watch it at an early movie screening with my sister and I loved the movie. Rise of the Guardians is about the guardians: Jack Frost, Santa Clause, the Easter Bunny, and the Tooth Fairy. They work together to protect children’s innocence to fight an evil spirit, who are using fear to fight back. It’s a great kid Christmas movie that still has plenty of action.
5. Finding Christmas
I might as well stop apologizing for loving Tricia Helfer right now. Because here’s another one of her Christmas movies. I’m pretty sure Finding Christmas is a rip-off of The Holiday, but truth be told, I’ve never seen it. But what I do know is that the plot is similar: two guys switch houses around the holidays. In this movie, they’re both trying to get out of their comfort zones after making some pretty big realizations. One of them is stuck in the past and the other is too focused on the future. Then, they meet and fall for local girls, one of which is the other’s older sister. Then, they all spend the holidays together. So it’s just another easygoing Hallmark movie to enjoy over the holidays.
Let me know what other underrated or lesser-known Christmas movies I should watch and/or add to this list! Hope everyone has a great holiday!