A&E desk reveals favorite holiday films to watch

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Photo by Lily Werner

To many, Christmas is incomplete without the beloved films that draw us closer to the spirit of the holiday season. In some way, they become ingrained as Christmas traditions. Celebrate the holidays alongside the Marquette Wire’s A&E desk by watching the movies that best help us prepare for the Christmas season.

Patrick Curran, MUTV Executive Arts & Entertainment Producer

Patrick Curran’s favorite holiday movie is the 1990 classic, “Home Alone.” “It is not even my favorite holiday movie, but one of my favorite movies of all time. I watch it every year,” Curran said. 

Curran finds joy in the importance of family, a theme throughout the movie. 

“Home Alone can be counted on to put me in a good mood. The movie brings people together, which is always key around the holidays,” Curran said. 

Curran mentioned there are too many holiday films to keep track of nowadays.
“I also want to shout out ‘Spirited’ on Apple TV. It’s a new Christmas musical that is a spin on the classic Christmas Carol. It stars Will Ferrel and Tim Allen,” Curran said. 

Izzy Fonfara Drewel, Executive A&E Editor

Izzy’s favorite Christmas movie is, “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” (2000).

“It has to be the live-action one, though,” Fonfara Drewel said.

Fonfara Drewel has an ongoing debate with her mother about which version of the Grinch movie is better. 

“She strongly believes the old animated one is the best, but unfortunately, I disagree with her,” Fonfara Drewel said. 

The holidays make Fonfara Drewel nostalgic for simpler times. 

“Between finals, work and traveling I can get stressed and mean. I have young siblings and they can get on my nerves especially when I’m used to living without them, so watching these movies is a good way to let go of my stress,” Fonfara Drewel said. 

Aiyona Calvin, A&E Reporter  

Aiyona Calvin’s favorite holiday film is, “Polar Express” (2004) with “How the Grinch Stole Christmas,” the original picture dating back to 1966, a close runner-up. 

“As a kid, I always thought it would be so magical to go on a train and see Santa in the middle of the night. I never got the chance to go on the Polar Express that they do near Madison, WI, but I have been wanting to visit,” Calvin said. 

Calvin thinks the film encompasses what Christmas is about: spirit, smiles and celebrating with friends and family. 

“I think that holiday films can put a smile on anyone’s face. They make children’s holiday celebration start blooming and it’s amazing when you see little kids get so excited about the little traditions you do during the holidays. From decorating a tree or the house to even just playing in the snow,” Calvin said. 

Clare Lindstrom, A&E Audio Reporter

Clare Lindstrom’s favorite Christmas movie also is “Polar Express.” 

“My family watches it every year and we have for as long as I can remember. We love the music and the story!” Lindstrom said. 

Lindstrom believes the film reflects what Christmas means most to her, “a time to be reminded of all the good in the world — and to pause and focus on those we love and are grateful for,” Lindstrom said. 

Lindstrom draws on the importance of faith in life. 

“No matter what it is, it is worthwhile to have something you believe in and something that grounds you,” Lindstrom said. 

Although “Love Actually,” isn’t a Christmas film, Lindstrom said she wanted to give it an honorable mention. 

Isabella Flores, A&E Reporter

“Elf”(2003) is Isabella Flores’ favorite movie.

“Ever since I was a little kid, my family would watch it together. Obviously, it’s a funny one, and I love Will Ferrell,” Flores said. 

Flores thinks despite the comedy of the film, it has a central message that it is important to love everyone, regardless of what differences they may have.

“The movie creates a lovable and cheerful environment. This brings people together in a happy way,” Flores said. 

Phoebe Goebel, A&E Assistant Editor

Phoebe Goebel’s favorite Christmas film is “White Christmas.” The 1954 movie stars classic Hollywood actor, Danny Kaye.

“This is my all-time favorite Christmas music because I have always watched older movies with my grandparents. Almost every night, we’ll sit down to watch a movie that is from the 50s, 60s or 70s. When the Christmas season comes along, this is the movie we chose,” Goebel said. 

The film draws upon an important value in Goebel’s life: kindness. 

“No matter the circumstance you are in, you still have the ability to be kind to others,” Goebel said.

 Goebel draws inspiration from film and her grandparents during the holiday season. 

“Film is important to my daily life, so through holiday films, I feel like I can truly embrace the holiday spirit. I spent a long time living with my grandparents, and they are the most important people in my life. Being able to share holiday traditions with them means everything to me,” Goebel said. 

Lauren Puthoff, A&E Reporter

“The Santa Clause” (1994) is Lauren Puthoff’s favorite movie.

“It brings me back to the joy of being a kid and waiting for Santa. It brings me back to when I thought my dad was Santa Claus, and I was going to inherit the north pole,” Puthoff said. 

Puthoff still believes in the Christmas magic of being with close family and friends. 

“It’s not an old film, but it’s also not a brand new one. It’s a movie I grew up with throughout my childhood. It brings back the Christmas magic of being a kid and the time spent with family,” Puthoff said.

Caroline Bennett, Assistant MUTV Multimedia Entertainment Journalist

Caroline Bennett’s favorite holiday film is “National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation” (1989).

“It’s my favorite Christmas comedy. Aunt Bethany always makes me cackle. It’s the type of comedies I grew up watching with my dad, just the old slapstick humor, lots of physical comedy,” Bennett said. 

Bennett thinks the film is an accurate representation of the holidays. 

“No matter how hard you try Christmas will always be a mess but at least you have your crazy family!” Bennett said. 

Angelina Galullo, A&E Reporter

My favorite Christmas movie has to be “It’s A Wonderful Life,” (1946) because it was my Grandma’s favorite holiday film. “Every time a bell rings, an angel gets its wings,” is a famous quote from the film that was repeated in my household throughout my childhood. Every family Christmas Eve celebration would conclude with the movie on the television, buying time before we had to leave for midnight mass. Although I think the movie runs way too long at 2 and a half hours, which makes it hard to tolerate the black-and-white cinematography and 1940s language, it will always hold a fond place in my heart.

These movies and countless other Christmas films, stand the audience’s test of time, keeping viewers coming back each year to celebrate the holiday season. Although each plot varies, each film is tied together by the same themes — love, family and faith, that is prevalent and grow stronger with each coming season.

This story was written by Angelina Galullo. She can be reached at [email protected]