The re-gift that keeps on giving: Top 20 holiday movies of the '80s
The holiday TV season is in full swing, so that means nightly reruns of the real classics. A little Rudolph, another helping of Frosty, a full portion of the Heat Miser and Snow Miser. ("Heeee's too much...")
It's also a great time to rerun my favorite list from last year: The 20 greatest holiday movies of the 80s. [Click here to see a list of our favorite holiday flicks from other decades.]
It wasn't easy to come up with a list of great holiday movies from our favorite decade. Once you get past the top 10, you're basically dealing with horror movies and remakes of the usual classics.
And some of the 20 aren't as holiday oriented as others. Few people would consider "Lethal Weapon" a Christmas movie, but yet the holiday plays a major role in the flick. Same goes for several other films in the top 10.
But we here at "Stuck in the 80s" had to flexible and bend a little to fan feedback. So based on reader feedback, critic lists and a heck of a lot of poking around the Internet, we give you...
Top 20 holiday movies of the 80s:
20. A Christmas Carol (1984): George C. Scott, David Warner. "Another sound from you... and you'll keep your Christmas by losing your situation."
18. One Magic Christmas (1985): Mary Steenburgen, Harry Dean Stanton. "Gideon can make it so Dad's not dead any more!"
17. You Better Watch Out (1980): Brandon Maggart, Jeffrey DeMunn. "But if you're bad, then your name goes in the Bad Boys and Girls Book, and then I'll bring you something... horrible. "
16. Don't Open 'Til Christmas (1984): Edmund Purdom, Alan Lake. Tagline: "T'was the night before Christmas, and all through the house, not a creature was stirring...they were all dead!"
15. The Night They Saved Christmas (1984): Jaclyn Smith, Art Carney. "I'm going to tell you one more time. Sing anything you want. White Christmas, Frosty the Snowman, Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer. But no more Jingle Bells! "
14. Santa Claus - The Movie (1985): Dudley Moore, John Lithgow. Tagline: "From the team who brought the three Superman blockbusters to the screen comes a story to stir the imagination - and warm the heart."
13. Babes in Toyland (1986): Drew Barrymore, Richard Mulligan. "He's got trolls! Hundreds of trolls, who ate all the cookies!"
12. A Claymation Christmas Celebration (1987): Tim Conner, Johnny Counterfit. "Let's wassail."
11. A Very Brady Christmas (1988): Florence Henderson, Robert Reed. "Did you think there was a blanket fairy?"
9. Lethal Weapon (1987): Mel Gibson, Danny Glover. "Maybe we'll stay alive long enough for me to buy you a present."
8. Blackadder's Christmas Carol (1988): Rowan Atkinson, Stephen Fry. "I trust Christmas brings to you its traditional mix of good food and violent stomach cramp."
7. Die Hard (1988): Bruce Willis, Alan Rickman. "Now I have a machine gun. Ho, ho, ho."
6. Better Off Dead (1985): John Cusack, Diane Franklin. "Ah, come on! It's Christmas Eve! I could be home right now, drinking this *monster* eggnog my brother makes with lighter fluid." (Listen to podcast)
5. Gremlins (1984): Hoyt Axton, Phoebe Cates. "Bright light. Bright light."
4. Trading Places (1983): Dan Aykroyd, Eddie Murphy. "You know, it occurs to me that the best way you hurt rich people is by turning them into poor people."
3. A Christmas Vacation (1989): Chevy Chase, Beverly D'Angelo. "When Santa squeezes his fat white ass down that chimney tonight, he's gonna find the jolliest bunch of a--holes this side of the nuthouse."
2. A Christmas Story (1983): Darren McGavin, Peter Billingsley. "Next to me in the blackness lay my oiled blue steel beauty. The greatest Christmas gift I had ever received, or would ever receive. Gradually, I drifted off to sleep, pringing ducks on the wing and getting off spectacular hip shots."
1. Scrooged (1988): Bill Murray, Karen Allen. "I don't mind you shooting at me, Frank, but take it easy on the Bacardi."
Why Scrooged deserves to be at the top: It's probably the only underrated Bill Murray movie of the 80s (most overrated? Ghostbusters). His dark humor keeps the cheeriness from getting too sugary ... It's full of 80s stars (Karen Allen, Bob Goldthwait, Carol Kane for starters) ... Like all true masterpieces of the 80s, it got awful reviews by critics. Roger Ebert hated it, calling it "disquieting and unsettling." ... And it has a signature original song by an 80s icon -- "Put a Little Love in Your Heart" by Annie Lennox.
Leave a comment: What'd we screw up on? What films did we leave out? Leave us a lump of coal in our stockings (or just a comment below) and express your opinion.