List of Television Holiday Movies


A list of television holiday movies is always in high demand as the season rolls around. Most years, the list of television holiday movies is made up of old classics and new favorites, so there is sure to be something to keep everyone happy.

List of Holiday Television Movies - The Classics

There are certain movies that you can almost always come across on your TV dial during the holidays. Here are just a few that may already be part of your family holiday traditions:

Rudolph The Red Nosed Reindeer

Although updated versions of the movie have been released, the classic version of Rudolph that appears on screens every holiday season was first seen in 1964. Generation after generation has fallen in love with this story of a reindeer who runs away from home after his parents and peers make him feel bad about his red, glowing nose. An encounter with Santa, in which his nose saves Christmas, teaches everyone a lesson about embracing differences.

Frosty The Snowman

Frosty The Snowman first aired in December, 1969, and like Rudolph, it has aired every holiday season since. The plot of the movie involves Frosty trying to save the girl who made him after she took him to the North Pole to try to stop him from melting. The weather is too cold for her, so Santa steps in, takes her home and offers Frosty a home in the North Pole.

A Christmas Story

Comparatively, A Christmas Story is a relatively new movie. Released in 1983, TNT has turned this movie into a holiday standby by showing it on repeat for 24 hours, starting on Christmas Eve. The story of a boy whose dream gift is one that his mother fears will shoot his eye out and trials and tribulations of family life in the 1950s has become a beloved part of many holiday gatherings.

National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation

Combining the humor audiences have come to expect from the Griswolds with some touching family moments, Christmas Vacation offers some comedic relief from the more saccharine Christmas fare. Although not always appropriate for the whole family, it's often a welcome distraction for the older crowd.

Miracle on 34th Street

This 1947 movie featuring a department store Santa that just might be the real thing has somehow managed to stand the test of time and remain an annual TV must-see every Christmas season. Though the movie has been colorized, the black and white version is the one that often makes it to the TV screens.

It's a Wonderful Life

Though this 1946 film is set against the backdrop of the Great Depression, it remains a feel good holiday classic and reminder of the importance of loved ones. This classic movie tends to pop up a few times during the season. It has also been colorized. However, the black and white version is the one most commonly shown.

How The Grinch Stole Christmas

This animated holiday favorite, based on the Dr. Seuss book of the same name, comes with a message about the meaning of the season. After the Grinch tries to steal Christmas from the Whos of Whoville, he is touched and changed by their generosity and forgiveness.

Christmas ornaments

Lists of Television Holiday Movies - New Favorites

Where can you turn if you have grown tired of the usual holiday TV movie rotation? TV networks are always adding new holiday movies from the theaters onto their schedule, plus some networks are in the business of making their own holiday films. Here are a few places you can indulge your holiday movie habit:

  • Major Networks - Use your local paper, the Internet or the guide station on your television to keep up with what the major network stations are offering during the holidays. Not only are they homes for some of the classics, but they often pick up new holiday movies as well.
  • Lifetime - This station that has made the TV movie an institution and runs all holiday themed movies from Thanksgiving through until Christmas. This network is a great place to find movies you can't see anywhere else, including a string of original productions.
  • Subscription Channels - HBO, Showtime and other premium channels are good places to find holiday movies, commercial-free and uncut. You can also find original productions on these stations as well.
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List of Television Holiday Movies