Moviefone's Top 25 Christmas Movies

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Moviefone's Top 25 Christmas Movies#1
Posted: 11/30/07 at 9:57pm
Just like they did for Halloween (where they counted down 31 films) they are now counting down their top 25 Christmas movies of all time, starting today and ending on Christmas Eve.

Also, just like their Halloween list, they are only revealing one movie a day, and for the rest they have given clues.

I will post the list of clues for all of you to muse over, and in a separate post will list the answers that I have so far. That way if you want to see how many you can figure out before seeing my answers you can. Of course, I still have several more to go to have a complete list!

Here are the clues in order from #1 - #25 (which has already been revealed)

1. Three of the stories upon which this Christmas classic was based were originally published in Playboy Magazine.

2. This feel-good flick abandoned the then-standard method for fake falling snow (crushed cornflakes painted white) and developed a new one (fire-fighting chemical foamite) because falling cornflakes were so loud that dialogue had to be dubbed in after the fact.

3. This Christmas movie was released in May because the studio head insisted more people went to see movies in the summer.

4. One of the female actors accidentally injured the male lead's lip so badly that filming had to be halted for several days.

5. All of the lead actress's costumes were designed to cover her neck, which looked prematurely aged due to her battle with anorexia.

6. Jim Carrey was originally attached to star in this modern classic -- a full 10 years before it actually got made.

7. The set used in this film was the same one used for a famous Katharine Hepburn-Cary Grant movie.

8. A role in this comedy was written for -- but ultimately not played by -- Kelsey Grammer.

9. This early classic was remade in the late '60s using many of the same characters -- but an entirely different plot.

10. The neighbor's house in this slapstick comedy is also used as the Murtaughs' house in all the 'Lethal Weapon' movies.

11. Twenty years after this film's original release, the star reprised his role by lending his voice to an animated remake.

12. To film a drunken dance sequence, one of this musical's lead actors did eight shots of bourbon.

13. The main character of this musical is voiced by two different actors: one for speaking and one for singing.

14. After this romantic comedy's original director left the production, the two principal actors switched roles and the entire film was reshot.

15. A Robert Palmer music video inspired part of this romantic comedy.

16. This untraditional holiday flick spawned one of the most quoted lines in movie history.

17. The director of this romantic comedy delayed the film's start -- and made another famous and Oscar-nominated film in the interim -- in order to secure the two lead actors he desired.

18. This Oscar-nominated period drama -- with a decidedly un-Christmasy title -- was released after its director had died.

19. This bawdy Christmas romp marked the final live-action appearance of a TV legend.

20. A peek at one page of Santa's "nice" list in this flick reveals that both Andre Agassi and Armand Assante made the cut.

21. The furry main character of this Christmas-set flick was voiced by a popular TV game-show host.

22. This Oscar-nominated drama was originally supposed to be rated R, but the MPAA switched it to PG-13 after Roger Ebert criticized the rating.

23. George Carlin was one of the actors considered for the lead role in this adaptation of a holiday classic.

24. Even a poisonous viper gets elevated to angelhood in this feel-good '50s Christmas flick.

25. The Polar Express (already announced so no clue)

http://movies.aol.com/holiday-movies/best-christmas-movies
"You pile up enough tomorrows, and you'll find you are left with nothing but a lot of empty yesterdays. I don't know about you, but I'd like to make today worth remembering." --Harold Hill from The Music Man
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re: Moviefone's Top 25 Christmas Movies#2
Posted: 11/30/07 at 10:01pm
Here is what I have so far:

1. A CHRISTMAS STORY

2. IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE

3. MIRACLE ON 34TH STREET

4. SCROOGED

5. WHITE CHRISTMAS

6. ELF

7.

8. HOME ALONE

9.

10. CHRISTMAS VACATION

11. SCROOGE (1951 Alastair Sim version)

12. HOLIDAY INN

13. THE NIGHTMARE BEFORE CHRISTMAS

14.

15.

16. DIE HARD

17. THE SHOP AROUND THE CORNER

18.

19.

20. THE SANTA CLAUSE

21. GREMLINS

22. JOYEUX NOEL

23. THE MUPPET CHRISTMAS CAROL

24. WE'RE NO ANGELS

"You pile up enough tomorrows, and you'll find you are left with nothing but a lot of empty yesterdays. I don't know about you, but I'd like to make today worth remembering." --Harold Hill from The Music Man
Updated On: 11/30/07 at 10:01 PM
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re: Moviefone's Top 25 Christmas Movies#2
Posted: 11/30/07 at 10:34pm
14. The Bishop's Wife
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re: Moviefone's Top 25 Christmas Movies#3
Posted: 12/1/07 at 2:42am
19. Bad Santa
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re: Moviefone's Top 25 Christmas Movies#4
Posted: 12/1/07 at 2:49am
I think 15 is LOVE ACTUALLY.

And could 7 be THE REF?
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re: Moviefone's Top 25 Christmas Movies#5
Posted: 12/1/07 at 3:32am

"All I Want For Christmas" with Ethan Randall(Embry), Thora Birch and Lauren Bacall is one of my fav holiday tales.
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re: Moviefone's Top 25 Christmas Movies#6
Posted: 12/1/07 at 12:03pm
This is really friggin' HARD!

I keep wracking my brain over #7...

Major sleuth work going on here...

Grant and Hepburn made three movies together: Holiday, Bringing Up Baby and The Philadelphia Story.

Holiday was made in 1938 for Columbia.
Bringing Up Baby was also 1938 but for RKO.
And The Philadelphia Story was 1940 at MGM.

So, I'm trying to picture what holiday movies might have used those sets, in or around those years, at those studios!

Movies that came to mind right away, but don't quite fit the years or studios, are: Meet John Doe (Capra/Warner Bros. 1941) and Christmas In Connecticut (Warner Bros. 1945).

Dang!


EDIT: And my first thought on #9 was The Lemon Drop Kid. The original in the 1930s had a different plot than the remake with Bob Hope that introduced the song "Silver Bells." But the remake was made in 1951, not "the late '60s."

THAT SAID... Meet John Doe, Christmas in Connecticut and The Lemon Drop Kid aren't YET fitting on this mystery list, but are all definitely "holiday film favorites."


EDIT again!! --- And EXCELLENT work, Enjorlas77! Very impressive.
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Updated On: 12/1/07 at 12:03 PM
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re: Moviefone's Top 25 Christmas Movies#7
Posted: 12/3/07 at 2:01pm
EDIT -- I updated the list to include #7 "Christmas in Connecticut" as pointed out by NCGuy. So its down to #9 and #18.

1. A CHRISTMAS STORY

2. IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE

3. MIRACLE ON 34TH STREET

4. SCROOGED

5. WHITE CHRISTMAS

6. ELF

7. CHRISTMAS IN CONNECTICUT

8. HOME ALONE

9.

10. CHRISTMAS VACATION

11. SCROOGE (1951 Alastair Sim version)

12. HOLIDAY INN

13. THE NIGHTMARE BEFORE CHRISTMAS

14. THE BISHOP'S WIFE

15. LOVE ACTUALLY

16. DIE HARD

17. THE SHOP AROUND THE CORNER

18.

19. BAD SANTA

20. THE SANTA CLAUSE

21. GREMLINS

22. JOYEUX NOEL

23. THE MUPPET CHRISTMAS CAROL

24. WE'RE NO ANGELS



"You pile up enough tomorrows, and you'll find you are left with nothing but a lot of empty yesterdays. I don't know about you, but I'd like to make today worth remembering." --Harold Hill from The Music Man
Updated On: 12/4/07 at 02:01 PM
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re: Moviefone's Top 25 Christmas Movies#8
Posted: 12/3/07 at 2:06pm
Best12bars --

I agree that this is hard!

I am considering MEET ME IN ST. LOUIS at #7, BABES IN TOYLAND at #9, and possibly EYES WIDE SHUT at #18.

There was a Laurel and Hardy "Babes in Toyland" from 1934, and the 1961 version did include many of the same characters in a new plot -- but the problem is that it was made in 1961, and the clue says "late 60's".

Kubrick died prior to the release of EYES WIDE SHUT, and it does take place at a Christmas party...

I don't have any reasoning for MEET ME IN ST. LOUIS other than I just think it should make the list -- and it does fall into that time period of the Grant / Hepburn movies.

Any thoughts?

"You pile up enough tomorrows, and you'll find you are left with nothing but a lot of empty yesterdays. I don't know about you, but I'd like to make today worth remembering." --Harold Hill from The Music Man
Updated On: 12/3/07 at 02:06 PM
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re: Moviefone's Top 25 Christmas Movies#9
Posted: 12/3/07 at 5:55pm
I think you're absolutely right about #9! I didn't think of Babes In Toyland as a Christmas movie, but they always play the title tune and the March of the Wooden Soldiers this time of year. And the clue fits closer than Lemon Drop Kid (off by more than a decade).

I'm not so sure about Meet Me In St. Louis for #8. I know the outdoor sets were built specifically for this film in 1944, then reused many times by MGM over the years for movies like "Gigi" (for the opening sequence with Chevalier) and later on TV shows like The Twilight Zone... but it was nicknamed the "St. Louis Street" right away, because it was built fresh for this movie. But that's the outdoor sets.

As far as interior sets, the only MGM movie those two made together was The Philadelphia Story... and I don't see any of those interiors translating over to Meet Me in St. Louis.

...and perhaps you're right about Eyes Wide Shut... although I'm having trouble thinking of it as a Christmas film either. Still, your reasoning holds up!

If that's the case... what happened to:

Meet Mt In St. Louis
The Lemon Drop Kid
Meet John Doe
Christmas in Connecticut

Come to think of it, outside of the (great) tough questions, I'm not very fond of this list, particularly its order! Alistair Sim's Scrooge is way too low (when you look at what's above it).

And I think the Finney "Scrooge" should be on here SOMEWHERE as well. It's a holiday tradition now on TV and a solid DVD seller every year. (plus my personal favorite of the season!)
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Updated On: 12/3/07 at 05:55 PM
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re: Moviefone's Top 25 Christmas Movies#10
Posted: 12/3/07 at 6:18pm
9. This early classic was remade in the late '60s using many of the same characters -- but an entirely different plot.

I'm not sure of what characters were created in the cartoon short back in 1944, but Rudolph, the Red Nose Reindeer was created into the famous 1964 t.v. movie. But that's not late sixties.

I'm just a little angry that that movie isn't on there, so I want Rudolph to be on the list in some way. Heh
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re: Moviefone's Top 25 Christmas Movies#11
Posted: 12/3/07 at 6:19pm
Don't sweat it Rogue... Made-For-TV movies aren't included on this list. Only theatrical films.


EDIT: What holiday movies were released in the late '60s? I'm stumped.
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Updated On: 12/3/07 at 06:19 PM
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re: Moviefone's Top 25 Christmas Movies#12
Posted: 12/3/07 at 7:42pm
Ah, okay. That's good. :)

I tried looking at a list of movies in the 60s on wikipedia, but it was driving me crazy.
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re: Moviefone's Top 25 Christmas Movies#13
Posted: 12/3/07 at 8:19pm
A person could go blind.

All I can think of in the late '60s are the Rankin Bass TV films, Rudolph, Drummer Boy, Santa Claus Is Coming To Town and Frosty... and they don't count!

Were there any theatrical films about Christmas in the late '60s?

Scrooge (with Albert Finney) came out in 1970.

Agh!

It's going to end up being Midnight Cowboy or something that I wouldn't possibly see as a "Christmas movie," even with a bottle of vodka and a straw.
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Updated On: 12/3/07 at 08:19 PM
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re: Moviefone's Top 25 Christmas Movies#14
Posted: 12/3/07 at 8:55pm
I think #9 is Meet Me In St Louis. Wasn't there a really lame remake in the sixties that starred Shelly Fabares and Celeste Holm?
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re: Moviefone's Top 25 Christmas Movies#15
Posted: 12/3/07 at 8:59pm
That was a TV series pilot for Meet Me In St. Louis in 1966.

I guess you COULD be right, though. It doesn't say the remake was a film OR that it was successful.

But I wouldn't call a TV series that's based on a film a "remake," either.
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re: Moviefone's Top 25 Christmas Movies#16
Posted: 12/3/07 at 9:08pm
It's included as an extra on the recent Meet Me in St Louis DVD release. I remember watching it and asking what on earth it had to do with the original movie. Same characters, completely different plot. That's what made me think of it. But, yeah, remade is a questionable word choice.
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re: Moviefone's Top 25 Christmas Movies#17
Posted: 12/3/07 at 11:00pm
I broke down and used Google because I couldnít stop thinking about #7, and apparently Christmas in Connecticut was filmed on the same set as Bringing Up Baby.
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re: Moviefone's Top 25 Christmas Movies#18
Posted: 12/4/07 at 9:24am
Yay, NCGuy! Nice work.

I'm a little surprised because those movies are from two different studios (MGM and Warner Bros.) AND seven years (1938 and 1945) apart from each other. But if you found the info Googling around, I'll bet they did too when they were working on the questions.

And artscallion---I'm starting to think you're probably right about Meet Me In St. Louis, even if "remake" is a weird choice of words for any TV pilot based on a film. The King & I and Seven Brides were also turned into TV shows, and with different plots, but those were both produced in the '70s.
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re: Moviefone's Top 25 Christmas Movies#19
Posted: 12/4/07 at 10:16am
I agree that the order of the list is highly debatable, as well as some of the choices of what to include or exclude.

I also can't believe the Albert Finney "Scrooge" is omitted. It's one of my all time favorites!
"You pile up enough tomorrows, and you'll find you are left with nothing but a lot of empty yesterdays. I don't know about you, but I'd like to make today worth remembering." --Harold Hill from The Music Man
Updated On: 12/4/07 at 10:16 AM
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re: Moviefone's Top 25 Christmas Movies#20
Posted: 12/4/07 at 10:52am
I'd put Scrooge at the top of the list, meeself.
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re: Moviefone's Top 25 Christmas Movies#21
Posted: 12/4/07 at 10:57am
Could #18 be John Hustonís adaptation of The Dead?
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re: Moviefone's Top 25 Christmas Movies#22
Posted: 12/4/07 at 2:25pm
6. Jim Carrey was originally attached to star in this modern classic -- a full 10 years before it actually got made.

Wouldn't #6 more likely be "The Grinch" - which still did star Jim Carrey, rather than "Elf." I mean, is "Elf" really a modern classic?

ETA. nevermind. I was going with what I thought but a quick wiki-search proved me wrong.
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Updated On: 12/4/07 at 02:25 PM
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re: Moviefone's Top 25 Christmas Movies#23
Posted: 12/4/07 at 2:32pm
...'cuz The Dead is exactly what I think about when I hear "holiday favorites"...

re: Moviefone's Top 25 Christmas Movies

Maybe it's The Shining. That had snow in it.


EDIT: DD--It also says Carrey was "originally attached," which implies (at least to me) that he ultimately didn't star in this movie.
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Updated On: 12/4/07 at 02:32 PM
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re: Moviefone's Top 25 Christmas Movies#24
Posted: 12/4/07 at 2:43pm
"19. This bawdy Christmas romp marked the final live-action appearance of a TV legend."


Oh, I'm just SURE it's "Mame."



"18. This Oscar-nominated period drama -- with a decidedly un-Christmasy title -- was released after its director had died."

Why is this one so hard? How many Oscar-nominated period dramas have been released after the director died?!?

I'm stumped.
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