Here’s a small list of some Christmas specials and short films.
A Charlie Brown Christmas (1965)
A lot of people complain about the commercialisation of Christmas and Peanuts regular Charlie Brown was no exception. Dismayed by the events in his home town as well as witnessing Snoopy decorate his kennel for a competition, Charlie sinks into a depression over the holidays. The kind of one where not even a ton of presents could help. But Linus tells him that Christmas is all about peace on earth and goodwill helping Charlie to realise he can still enjoy his Christmas.
The Snowman (1982)
One snowy morning, a young boy makes a snowman that later comes to life. The film is accompanied by music (everyone should remember ‘Walking in the Air’) that complements every action. The Snowman brings the boy one journey around the world where he gets to meet the one man most children wish to – Father Christmas. Oh and did I mention that it has an introduction by none other than Bowie himself.
Mickey’s Christmas Carol (1983)
It’s the familiar story of Scrooge or, in this case, Scrooge McDuck and Mickey the Mouse as Bob Cratchit aimed particularly at children. It’s one of the least terrifying versions of the tale and is a little piece of Disney gold.
How the Grinch Stole Christmas! (1966)
Dr. Suess’ story is about a mean grinch who dresses up as Santa and steals all the Christmas decorations, presents and food all because his heart is two sizes too small making him hate the happiness of Whoville. When he hears that their reaction on Christmas Day is not that of sadness but still of cheer he has a change of heart. Highlight: the song ‘You’re a Mean One, Mr. Grinch’. And please, let’s all forget about Jim Carey’s The Grinch… *shudders*
The Year without a Santa Claus (1974)
Mrs. Claus narrates the story as Santa comes down with a wee bit of a cold. His Scrooge like doctor berates him and tells him to stay in bed as he believes that no one cares about Christmas. Disheartened, Santa cancels the holiday and takes a break for himself to rest up. Two of his elves decide to find people who still believe but they run into trouble on the way.
Rudolph, the Red-Nosed Reindeer (1964)
Not everyone may know this but Rudolph actually wasn’t on the list originally – yeah, this was news to me too! He was added when the song of the same title grew in popularity. His story is widely known – ‘Then one foggy Christmas Eve Santa came to say: ‘Rudolph with your nose so bright, won’t you guide my sleigh tonight?’ And this short film illustrates it cheerfully.