Thirty seven ballots cast, 41 total movies but just 12 make the final cut. Why 12? Because I’ll be counting down the 12 days of Christmas with the movies that you all helped me vote as the 12 best Christmas movies of all time.
We’re starting today, Dec 12, with No. 12 and we’ll end on Dec. 23 with No. 1. Okay, so maybe I’m not counting down to Christmas but that’s because I don’t want to interrupt your Christmas Eve festivities by having to check what the No. 1 Christmas movie of all time is. Plus, you might want to watch all of these movies on Christmas Eve and Christmas and you can’t do that without knowing what the No. 1 flick is, right?
Now for information on how I got my information.
I started on Dec. 1 asking people to rank their top 10 favorite Christmas movies and I ended it ten days later with 37 ballots. I was surprised and pleased at the number of participants that I got to help me with this. Thank you all for casting a ballot, I love creating my Excel spreadsheet and ranking all the movies and enjoyed seeing what everyone chose as their favorites. It also helped me get into the Christmas spirit. So thanks for that too! I hope that reading this list and remembering these movies will do the same for you.
Now for how the point system works.
Very simple, the No. 1 movie gets 10 points, the No. 10 movie gets one. I have my spreadsheet ready and every time a ballot is cast I plug in the numbers and the computer calculates the total number of points.
Now to the poll.
Anytime you do a poll you’re going to have some disagreements (please see college football’s BCS poll and Major League Baseball’s All-Star Game). Should TV specials like “A Charlie Brown Christmas” and “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” be included? What constitutes a Christmas movie? Is “The Ref” or “Trapped inParadise” a Christmas movie because it’s taken place around Christmas time? And then there were the “Are these really Christmas movies?” picks like “Heidi”, “While You Were Sleeping” and “Empire Strikes Back”, which for the record I did not vote for despite it being my all time favorite flick.
Overall though the movies I thought would be near the top were at the top. Timeless classics like “It’s a Wonderful Life” and “Miracle on34th Street”, the modern-day classic “A Christmas Story” and soon-to-be classics “Elf” and “Bad Santa”. Okay, maybe not so much with “Bad Santa”, but it did hold its own in the voting.
And now to the list.
I tried to make the list a little more entertaining then just listing the movie and my take on the flick. Being a lover of statistics and useless information, I’ve included in each summary the year the movie was made, who directed it and starred in it, the total points that it compiled and its highest rank, number of ballots it was on and my personal ranking. I also included either the tagline or plot outline from the film courtesy of IMDB.com (Internet Movie Database) and a memorable quote and fun fact about the film. Like I said, a lot of useless information.
Now the fun and my geekiness has ended and I can return to being just a dork again. As I mentioned above I enjoyed being a geek and compiling the list, putting the numbers together and then finding out useless information on the movies. I hope you all enjoy it and hope it helps you all get ready for the Christmas season. Merry Christmas to you all!
No. 12 – White Christmas (1954)
Directed by: Michael Curtiz. Starring: Bing Crosby, Danny Kaye and Rosemary Clooney.
Total Points: 79 (Highest Rank No. 1 – twice. Named on 15 ballots. Not ranked on Kevy’s ballot).
Plot outline (from IMDB.com): After leaving the Army after W.W.II, Bob Wallace and Phil Davis team up to become a top song-and-dance act.Davisplays matchmaker and introduces Wallace to a pair of beautiful sisters (Betty and Judy) who also have a song-and-dance act. When Betty and Judy travel to aVermontlodge to perform a Christmas show, Wallace and Davis follow, only to find their former commander, General Waverly, is the lodge owner.
My Take on the Film: Though the film is called “White Christmas” the actual white Christmas part of the movie doesn’t really happen until the end of the film when the snow is falling and Bob, Phil and the girls are singing White Christmas for General Waverly. It’s a nice ending to the film and a wonderful Christmas present for the General. I was also touched by the beginning sequence when Bob (Bing) sings “White Christmas” to the troops. Hearing the words, “I’m dreaming of a White Christmas…” while the soldiers are stuck in the middle of a war was somewhat moving. But in between those two scenes there is a ton of singing and dancing and the movie really lacks a Christmas feel to it.
“White Christmas for me, is one of those timeless “feelgood movies.” It’s a great story of people falling in love and doing something nice for someone else who needs it. It’s filled with wonderful songs by Irving Berlin. All four main characters play their parts perfectly, mixing comedy, singing and dancing. It’s a timeless tale that captures “the age of innocence” inAmericathat warms your heart,” says my friend Cory, who picked “White Christmas” as his No. 1.
Fun facts about the film: The original idea was to reunite Fred Astaire and Bing Crosby, as they had been successful in Holiday Inn (the No. 18 movie on the list). Astaire refused, as he had “retired” at the time, so the part was reworked for Donald O’Connor. O’Connor pulled out, and the part was reworked for Danny Kaye. The Vermont inn is the remodeled Connecticut inn set of Holiday Inn (1942). All of Vera-Ellen‘s costumes, down to her robe and sleepwear, were designed to cover her neck, which was aged beyond her years due to her eating disorder, anorexia.