Christmas on Becca's Books | My Top 5 Christmas Movies by Jackie Kabler

~ My Top 5 Christmas Movies ~

By Jackie Kabler

I'm generally not a big film watcher - I find it really hard to sit still for two or more hours at a time, so I NEVER go to the cinema, and generally only watch films to pass the hours when I'm on a plane. But at Christmas, I make an exception. I just love cuddling up on the sofa on a cold afternoon or evening and getting into the festive spirit with a classic movie. So here, in no particular order, are my top five Christmas movies.

Elf - you know it's nearly Christmas when Elf is on. Will Ferrell is just hilarious as Buddy, the baby accidentally taken to the North Pole who grows up thinking he's an elf, and then finds out he's actually human. I just love watching him trying to get to grips with life in New York. The scene where he uses an escalator for the first time never stops being funny.

Willie Wonka & The Chocolate Factory - the original, 1971 version starring Gene Wilder. I know it's not technically a Christmas film, but it always seems to be on around Christmas, so it's firmly associated with the festive season in my mind. Gene Wilder is wonderfully wacky, I adore Veruca Salt, the Oompa-Loompas are fabulous and there's loads of chocolate to drool over. What's not to love?

The Polar Express - there had to be an animated movie in my top five and this is one of the best. It cost 165 million dollars to make, a record breaking amount for the time, and it shows. It's visually stunning, with a really magical feel to it, and the soundtrack is just beautiful. I especially love the song 'Believe' which has really powerful lyrics: "Believe in what you feel inside, give your dreams the wings to fly".

Love Actually - one of my favourite films EVER, not just for Christmas! I love how all of the separate stories entwine, and there are so many brilliant moments: Colin Firth proposing in terrible Portuguese, Hugh Grant as Prime Minister and that hilarious dance sequence around Number 10, the little boy racing through the airport to catch the American classmate he's fallen for. I could never get bored of this film.

Home Alone - OK, deep breath, this is the toughie. It's a fantastic, classic Christmas film, but the reason it has to be on my list is for another reason. In 2010 my younger sister Deborah collapsed and died very suddenly from a brain haemorrhage. She was married with three children, the youngest of whom was just a few months old. It was, as you can imagine, the most terrible time for our family, and because her death was so sudden and unexpected, none of us had any idea what she would have wanted for her funeral. So we sat down with her two older daughters and asked them whether mummy had ever mentioned anything at all about what she would like if she passed away. The only thing they could think of was that every time they snuggled up together at Christmas to watch Home Alone, Deborah always commented on how much she loved the song "O Holy Night" from the soundtrack, and had once said she wanted it at her funeral. It's obviously a Christmas song, and she died in May, but we played it anyway, as her coffin was carried into the church. I'm sure lots of people thought that was odd, but I hope she would have been pleased. I'm not sure if I can ever watch the film again, but it will always remind me of my beautiful sister, and for that reason, I couldn't leave it out.

So that's it, my top five. Merry Christmas - I hope this festive season brings you all memories to cherish.
Love Jackie x

Jackie Kabler worked as a newspaper reporter and then in television news for twenty years, including nearly a decade on GMTV. She later appeared on BBC and ITV news, presented a property show for Sky, hosted sports shows on Setanta Sports News and worked as a media trainer for the Armed Forces. She is now a presenter on shopping channel QVC. Jackie lives in Gloucestershire with her husband, who is a GP.

Jackie Kabler's debut novel The Dead Dog Day (Accent Press) is out now:

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1 comment :

  1. Great list - and very different from my own list of festive favourites that will be appearing here very soon! I am very sorry to hear about your sister but it is lovely that she will be remembered this year and every year whenever you hear that beautiful song. Have a great Christmas. Jon Teckman