Each movie listed includes:
(1) Title (2) Rating (3) Genres (4) Starring (5) Synopsis (6) My Personal Review (7) Scoring 1-5
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Die Hard (1988)
Genres: Adventure, Drama
Starring: Bruce Willis, Alan Rickman, and Bonnie Bedelia
Synopsis: John McClane, officer of the NYPD, tries to save his wife Holly Gennaro and several others that were taken hostage by German terrorist Hans Gruber during a Christmas party at the Nakatomi Plaza in Los Angeles.
Review: While the debate over whether or not this is a Christmas movie will never end, I’ll give you my opinion of it. Christmas is barely mentioned and barely plays a role in it. That being said, if you like action movies, and can get past it being made in 1988, you’ll really like it. If you’re looking for a Christmas movie, this probably isn’t what you want.
A Different Kind Of Christmas (1996)
Genres: Comedy, Drama, Romance
Starring: Shelley Long and Barry Bostwick
Synopsis: When you're the city attorney you don't need the kinds of problems that her father was giving her. After her mother died, her father began doing his "Santa Schtick," as she called it, much more intensely... which meant that he turned his home into a kind of year-round Santa Claus castle where children of all ages could come to see the wonderful presents and no child ever left without a gift. But what's wrong with this kind of philanthropic generosity was that it totally embarrassed her when, as city attorney, it fell to her to make him stop his 'commercial' enterprise in an area zoned for private homes. But there's more to it than that and the outcome is not quite what you'd expect.
Review: I didn’t care for the negatives in the father-daughter relationship but I love the feeling of keeping the Christmas spirit year-round and of giving to others.
Discarding Santa (2018)
Starring: Denise Morris
Synopsis: In 2010, the city of Leitchfield, Kentucky decided to outlaw any and all references to Santa Claus for Christmas, in an attempt to de-commercialize the holiday. The events that happened leading up to Christmas are still under investigation. The evidence, discovered in 2017, has been pieced together with news footage, security footage, police footage and City Counsel footage.
Review: This is supposed to look like a documentary. Instead, it’s odd, ever shifting angles, and bad camera shots. The acting is bad and the writing is horrible. The idea, being done as a movie rather than a fake documentary, is interesting. It’s a shame they ruined it.
A Dog For Christmas (2015)
Genres: Comedy, Family
Starring: Dean Cain and Richard Karn
Synopsis: The entire family stays at Dave and Sandy's home for the holidays. Kassandra wants a puppy for Christmas, but Mom and Dad aren't ready for that. Will Santa grant Kassandra's only wish for Christmas?
Review: Other than the parents putting out the gifts from Santa, which would be bad for young believers, this is a fun family film. A lot of it will go over young heads but the children have enough adventures for entertainment. Adults will love seeing the stress and work that goes into Christmas because it’s so relatable but done in a fun way.
The Dog Who Saved Christmas (2009)
Genres: Comedy, Family
Starring: Mario Lopez, Dean Cain, Gary Valentine, Elisa Donovan, Mindy Sterling, and Adrienne Barbeau
Synopsis: The Bannister family's new addition, Zeus, the yellow Labrador, appears to be less than the dependable guard dog the family needs. However, when two burglars set out to break into the Bannister's home while they're away for Christmas, Zeus seizes the chance to be a hero, proving every dog - even this one - has his day.
Review: If you liked Home Alone and/or you like dogs, you may enjoy this movie because that’s what it is. A watered-down Home Alone with a dog instead of a child. I found it to be overly silly but children may enjoy it.
The Dog Who Saved Christmas Vacation (2010)
Genres: Comedy, Family
Starring: Mario Lopez, Dean Cain, Paris Hilton, Gary Valentine, Elisa Donovan, Casper Van Dien, David O’Donnell, Mindy Sterling, and Adrienne Barbeau
Synopsis: The Bannister family - including former K-9 police hero Zeus - is back, and this time they're spending their holidays at a beautiful Rocky Mountain resort. But toss in an unexpected visit from cocky Uncle Randy and his foxy poodle Bella and a familiar pair of bumbling jewel thieves, and this holiday may be headed downhill fast! Can Zeus solve the crime, save Bella and hit the slopes, all in time for Christmas Day?
Review: A sequel to The Dog Who Saved Christmas, this is only a smidge better than the first. Unless you really like dogs, you probably won’t like it. Like the first movie, children may enjoy it more.
The Dog Who Saved The Holidays (2012)
Genres: Comedy, Family
Starring: Joey Lawrence, Mario Lopez, Dean Cain, Gary Valentine, Elisa Donovan, Shelley Long, and Michael Gross
Synopsis: The Bannisters are back with a new family addition - a mischievous pup named Eve. Watch as everyone's favorite dog, Zeus, learns to love his new sister and take down some bumbling thieves.
Review: Part three of the series is as bad as the first two. I’m not sure why they’re making sequels. I hate repeating myself but this movie may only appeal to children and dog lovers, if them.
A Doggone Christmas (2016)
Genres: Comedy, Fantasy
Starring: Zachary Cirino, Jaret Sacrey, and Dominique Swain
Synopsis: A dog with telepathic abilities escapes a government lockdown and runs straight into the loving arms of two young brothers. But the Washington brass won’t give up their secret weapon that easily. These spunky two boys must channel the spirit of Christmas to save their gifted canine friend.
Review: This movie may appeal to children. But probably only children. The story is silly, the acting is bad, the direction is poor. It’s definitely a B movie. But a talking dog and children may appeal to the young ones.
Dolly Parton’s Coat Of Many Colors (2015)
Genres: Drama, Family
Starring: Jennifer Nettles, Ricky Schroder, Gerald McRaney, and Dolly Parton
Synopsis: Based on the true story of Dolly Parton's remarkable upbringing, this movie special takes us inside the tight-knit Parton family as they struggle to overcome devastating tragedy and discover the healing power of love, faith and a raggedy patchwork coat that helped make Dolly who she is today.
Review: Such a precious story about family, acceptance, and love. Because it's a true story I see a little Dolly Parton. It’s also fascinating to see the way of life people experienced at that time and I love the message that faith will see you through.
Double Holiday (2019)
Genres: Drama, Family. Romance
Starring: Carly Pope and Kristoffer Polaha
Synopsis: Rebecca endures working with her colleague, and rival, Chris to plan the office Christmas party in the hopes of getting a promotion. While spending so much time together, will they take their eyes off the prize and see each other anew?
Review: Chris joins Rebecca’s family to learn about and celebrate Hanukkah while he teaches her about Christmas. In the end, the central message is that no matter how you celebrate, family is at the core. It’s a sweet love story with lots of holiday traditions.