Christmas is coming, and you’re in the mood to watch something for the special occasion of the year. Here, my favorite classic movies for the holiday season.
- The Shop Around the Corner, 1940
The Shop Around the Corner is the movie adapted from a Hungarian play written by Nikolaus (Miklos) Laszlo.
The story is about a Budapest gift-shop clerk Alfred Kralik (starred by James Stewart), and his newly hired shopgirl Klara Novak (starred by Margaret Sullavan). The two characters hate each other very much at first sight. Kralik prefers the company of the woman who is corresponding by mail with him but has never met. Novak falls for her male pen pal, whom she also has never laid eyes on. It isn’t difficult to figure out that Kralik and Novak have been writing letters to each other.
The film was later remade as In the Good Old Summertime in 1949, and as You’ve Got Mail in 1998, and also musicalized as She Loves Me in 1963 by Broadway production.
- Meet Me in St. Louis, 1944
Although it is not a Christmas movie exactly, we have to thank this film for the tune “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas.” And at the Christmas Ball, Judy Garland gives us a lesson in chic holiday dressing.
Meet Me in St. Louis was released in 1944. The film provided Judy Garland with one of her best roles, and several of her signature songs also.
The film follows the Smith family in the period leading up to the 1904 World’s Fair. A dozen charming stories to represent the twelve months of the year are expressed in the film in its musical numbers. The film’s songs and wonderful performances are naturally integrated into the story of the family’s day-to-day life.
- Christmas in Connecticut, 1945
Christmas in Connecticut is white with lies!
Barbara Stanwyck plays the role of a food writer who chronicles a fictitious life as a perfect housewife at a bucolic Connecticut farm. She’s found out and puts on a charade as to not disappoint a fan – a returning war hero (played by Dennis Morgan). Morgan has won a traditional family Christmas dinner which was to be prepared by Barbara Stanwyck in her own home. The catch: Stanwyck does not have a Connecticut home, and she’s never been in a kitchen in her life also! She also doesn’t have a husband as her articles claimed. Somewhere along the way, the two falls in love, of course.
In general, Christmas in Connecticut has its own irresistible charm and has become a perennial Christmas TV attraction in recent years.