Literary Holiday Movies

Posted by Danielle Mohlman

Christmas is just around the corner and while we’re daydreaming about decorating cookies and trimming the tree, we’re also making a list of all the movies we need to watch before December 25th.  In preparation for those pajama-clad nights in front of the television, here’s a list of our favorite Christmas movies and the books they’re based on. 


The Muppet Christmas Carol

The Muppet Christmas Carol is our hands down favorite adaptation of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol. Gonzo plays the author himself with Kermit the Frog as Bob Cratchit. Do you really need another reason to watch this film? Well here’s one: Jacob and Robert Marley have a show stopping number about spending an afterlife in chains. It’s the perfect comfort watch for a nostalgic night in.


The Polar Express

Based on the 1985 children’s book of the same name, The Polar Express tells the story of a young boy on a magical adventure to the North Pole by train. It’s a story of friendship, bravery, and the love we share at Christmas. The movie stars Tom Hanks as the conductor of The Polar Express and utilizes a then cutting edge live action performance capture technique. The film was recorded in the 2016 Guinness Book of World Records as the first all-digital capture film. And because it’s based on a children’s book, it has the potential to be fun for the whole family.


You’ve Got Mail

Based on the Hungarian play Parfumerie by Miklos Laszlo, You’ve Got Mail is sure to bring back memories of dial up days gone by. Written by Delia and Nora Ephron, You’ve Got Mail pits Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan against each other as business rivals and email pen pals. While You’ve Got Mail isn’t a Christmas movie in the strictest sense, there’s a beautiful scene where Meg Ryan’s character decorates the tree in her bookstore and writes to her pen pal about another holiday season spent in New York City.


Samantha: An American Girl Holiday

The first in a series of An American Girl films – you read that right, a series! – Samantha: An American Girl Holiday is made for television movie based on Meet Samantha and the other Samantha Parkington books many of us know and love. This 2004 movie features Mia Farrow as Grandmary Edwards and stars AnnaSophia Robb of The Carrie Diaries fame as Samantha. Put on this movie and dust off your American Girl books. This Christmas you’re introducing your niece to the wonderful world of historical fiction.