Many of us have memories of cozying up to a fire or under a blanket with our own families to watch some of these holiday classics. We make a tradition of it- with holiday treats, hot cocoa and cider, and comfy pajamas. It is a wonderful part of the holiday season that everyone can enjoy from the comfort of their own homes.
Unfortunately, many of the classics we remember from our youth are not available with common streaming services like Netflix or Amazon Prime (unless you want to rent or buy them at an extra fee). There are, however, a few gems available for 'free' with these services -- you just have to do a bit of digging!
Over the past several years, however, both streaming services have put significant investment in producing shows and movies of their own, including holiday movies. In fact, in 2012 Netflix started producing and streaming its own content. That first year they only had one original content piece back then, House of Cards. The next year they had 16 originally produced pieces of content including series and movies. By 2017, they had 300 pieces of content. Last year, in 2019, the original content was ramped up to over 370- more than one piece for every single day of the year. In 2021, they are expected to spend over $20 billion dollars. In 2020, they spent $17.3 billion creating original content.
Some of us remember when Amazon was just an online book store. Since then, however, it has become the go-to place for online shopping for just about everything, as well as a streaming service for shows and movies. Some shows and movies on Amazon you have to rent or purchase, which makes a less desirable option than Netflix in which everything is "free" along with a subscription service, but that means you are more likely to find some of the holiday classics that you know and love. But you also might be able to find some new and original content that become new holiday traditions. Much like Netflix, Amazon has ramped up its original content production since its inception in 2013, with hundreds of original series and movies available to their Prime subscribers.
We thought we'd share some of our favorite kid-approved Christmas titles to make your movie list a little bit simpler this year. Here they are!
Traditional and Original Content on Netflix
The Christmas Chronicles
This joyous movie is perfect for children of all ages. Two siblings try to catch Santa and in the process, bring Christmas to a halt. They have to work together, learning lessons along the way, to bring Christmas back to life.
The Christmas Chronicles 2
New this year, and a sequel to the above movie, the Christmas Chronicles 2 takes little sister Kate on an adventure that helps her say goodbye to her father that passed away years before and accept her new, growing family as her own.
Looking to have a Christmas musical? Then this is the one for you. This fun, charming, and sweet movie is full of fun songs that will have the kids singing and dancing.
A trip to church with her family on Christmas Eve gives young Angela an idea on how to help someone in need.
The story of a grumpy postman and a silly toy-maker that form an unlikely friendship that brings happiness to a small village.
48 Christmas Wishes
When a small town's letters to Santa burn up, two elves travel from the North Pole to get all the wishes from the townspeople.
Some of your child's favorite shows also have Christmas specials like Power Rangers, Super Monsters, Story Bots, Chico Bon Bon, Trolls, Rescue Riders, and Spirit.
Traditional and Original Content on Amazon Prime
It's a Wonderful Life
This holiday classic is available for free on Amazon Prime.
The Polar Express
A more recent holiday classic, this story tells of a little boy who is starting to lose his belief in Santa, and his trip on the Polar Express to the North Pole. Rent it for $3.99 on Amazon Prime.
A modern classic, this funny movie is perfect for older kids and adults who want some holiday cheer. "Santa?! I know him!"
Perhaps the most classic of all holiday tales, A Christmas Carol is based on the book by Charles Dickens. You can watch this restored and in-color version for free with Amazon Prime.
Classic Christmas Cartoons
2-hours of your favorite claymation Christmas cartoons are available to stream for free with Amazon Prime. Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, Jack Frost, Christmas Comes one Year, the Candelmaker, Snow Follin', The Shanty Where Santy Claus Lives, Toy World, Santa's Pocket Watch, and more are all included.
Miracle on 34th Street
The classic and traditional movie you watched as a child is available to stream for free on Amazon Prime.
No matter what movie you choose (or you could choose one for each day December!) your family will be sure to enjoy some of these favorite holiday classics, and some new ones, to get you all in the holiday spirit. So put on your matching Christmas pjs, get some hot cocoa and mini marshmallows, add a peppermint candy cane, and grab your popcorn for some of the best holiday movies to enjoy as family this Christmas season.
What are your favorite holiday movies?
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