Christmas Movies: Love & Family

Christmas is a time for family, friends, and, if you're a character in a movie, probably falling in love. We're not all so lucky to have hilarious families or epic love stories this time of year. But, that's what movies are for: to live vicariously through.

My favorite part of this movie is the very beginning. Their relationship is my idea of my perfect relationship. They're just really happy with their lives, they like trying new things together, they don't want to get married and they don't want kids. Although, I don't think I'll ever want to avoid my family so badly that I would rather go to Fiji on Christmas than see them. Their flight gets cancelled on Christmas and they have to go to each of their parent's houses and deal with their insane families.

First of all- Steve Martin without white hair really freaked me out. Prepare yourself. This movie contains just about every comedic actor popular at that time. And some that weren't that popular then, but we know now. It's the one-calamity-after-another story of three people working at a non-profit suicide help line and some crazy friends and neighbors on Christmas eve. Everyone's upset about being alone and/or miserable for the Holidays and then some ridiculous things start happening.

The Family Stone
I watch this movie even when it isn't Christmas. It's just one of those ensemble cast, light-hearted dramedies that's sweet and cheerful but still has some guts. Each character is funny in their own way. The story is about a close-knit family welcoming a son's new girlfriend into their home for Christmas. She is an extremely uptight workaholic just trying to get everyone to like her, but they don't accept her.

Love Actually
Everyone's seen this, right? Before ensemble cast, separate-but-connected-plot-lines type movies like He's Just Not That Into You, Valentine's Day and New Year's Eve, there was Love Actually. What's better than a movie chock-full of American movie stars? A movie chock-full of British movie stars! Everybody learns a lesson and gets an ending they deserve.

This is another interconnected plots movie, but with many less characters and much more serious things going on. A cop with jealousy issues, his beautiful fiance, a woman with no one to spend Christmas with but her catatonic mother and a crazy guilt-ridden old man's lives all come together in different ways on Christmas Eve. Everyone learns their lesson and we're left pondering the miracles of Christmas.

The Holiday
"Where do I want to go on holiday at Christmas, alone?" Well, Cameron Diaz wants to go to Surrey, which means Kate Winslet gets to go to LA. Lonely women finding love and self-respect at Christmas. What a heart-warming Christmas tale. Or mildly depressing if, like these women, you are alone for Christmas. But, unlike them, you don't get to go on a nice holiday, fall in love and end it with a New Year's party. So, depending on your situation, you may or may not love this romantic comedy.