• Phil

Top 10 Alternative Christmas Movies (2020)

Once again, dear readers, the festive season is upon us meaning that since the middle of November, the Christmas songs have been on the radio and Christmas films have been flooding not only television channels but also suggested lists across streaming platforms.

If you are like me and bored with the usual Christmas movies. Not really bothered about your Miracle on 34th Street or A Christmas Story. Then step this way as we look at ten alternative films you might enjoy instead.

What are your top 10 suggestions?

First and foremost the definition of a Christmas movie has really been muddled for some of these films, but I wanted to include them so fudged it a little. I am a massive fan of horror films and action-adventure, so I have picked five films from each genre.

Action films

Released in 1986, Cobra is a film featuring Sylvester Stallone (who plays the lead role of Marion 'Cobra' Cobretti) that sees him thrust into an investigation of a secretive group of murderers who have been terrorising civilians across California. When the groups latest murder is witnessed by a model named Ingrid (played by Brigitte Nielsen), the killers must refocus all of their attention and resources to silencing her. Luckily Cobra has made it his personal mission to protect Ingrid and bring down the group before anyone else is killed.

- The official trailer linked from the Warner Bros. YouTube channel -

Released in 1988, Die Hard sees Bruce Willis take to the screen as John McClane for the first time as he fights to defend his wife and her co-workers when their Christmas party is crashed by a group of German terrorists led by Hans Gruber (played by Alan Rickman). At least this year, it is going to be anything but quiet across Los Angeles as the Nakatomi Plaza becomes an all-out war zone between the one-man army (John McClane) and Hans' forces.

- The official trailer linked from 20th Century Studios' YouTube channel -

Released in 1992, Batman Returns sees Michael Keaton don the dark knight's cowl as he takes to Gotham's streets to face Oswald Cobblepot (aka the Penguin) as he sets out to unleash his army of penguins on Gotham and seize it as his own. With Selina Kyle (Catwoman) played by Michelle Pfeiffer and Penguin played by Danny DeVito, Batman Returns is the second-ever Batman film to hit the big screen and one of the best entries into the early film franchise.

- The official trailer linked from DC's YouTube channel -

Released in 1985, Rocky IV focuses around the rivalry between Ivan Drago (played by Dolph Lundgren) and Rocky Balboa (Sylvester Stallone) after Ivan kills Rocky's friend Apollo Creed (played by Carl Weathers) during his first-ever boxing match stateside. Hungry for revenge, Rocky challenges Ivan to a boxing match and must travel to the Soviet Union to fight Ivan on his home turf.

- The official trailer linked from the Movieclips Classic Trailers YouTube channel -

Released in 1996 and featuring the absolute screen legend that is Samuel Jackson, The Long Kiss Goodnight is a film that follows Samantha Caine (played by Geena Davis) who was found washed up eight years ago on a New Jersey beach with amnesia. After a car crash though, the amnesia begins to lift, and everything starts to come back to Sam through drips of information that lead her to believe she use to be a CIA assassin. The skillset for which, with the help of a private detective (Mitch Hennessey, played by Samuel Jackson), she must tap into once more to fight to protect her family from sinister government forces.

Unfortunately for The Long Kiss Goodnight the movie does not appear on YouTube Movies' catalogue of films nor does there seem to be an official production trailer from the production company or Movieclips Classic Trailers.

Horror films

Released in 1993 and considered a cult classic, The Nightmare Before Christmas is an animated musical with very dark fantasy themes, that sees the Pumpkin King of Halloween Town (Jack Skellington) growing bored with the same old festivities year after year. After exploring the woods around Halloween Town, Jack finds a portal to Christmas Town and becomes obsessed with the strange holiday, going as far as attempting to bring Christmas to Halloween Town.

... Oh and Jack may have a hand in arranging the kidnap of Santa to help get that 'authentic' Christmas feeling.

- The official trailer linked from the Movieclips Classic Trailers YouTube channel -

Released in 1984, Gremlins is an absolute blast of a Christmas horror film that sees a young boy (Billy Peltzer played by Zach Galligan) gifted a mysterious mogwai by his father (Randall Peltzer played by Hoyt Axton) for Christmas. The rules for the mogwai are simple:

  1. Do not expose it to bright lights.

  2. Do not get it wet.

  3. Do not feed it after midnight.

Unfortunately, due to an unfortunate series of events, an army of mischievous and psychotic gremlins are released upon the Peltzer home before they escape out into the surrounding town of Kingston Falls. With the mogwai as his ally, it is up to Billy to try and stop the gremlin's rampage.

- The official trailer linked from the Movieclips Classic Trailers YouTube channel -

Released in 2015, Krampus is an American horror film that sees a young Max Engel (played by Emjay Anthony) lose his faith in goodwill and belief in Christmas's spirit. Unfortunately in doing so, a demonic anti-Claus known as Krampus comes to town, bringing with his a furious snowstorm that traps Max and his dysfunctional family together. As Krampus unleashes a selection of his demonic minions, toys and murderous teddy bears, Max and his family must fight to survive the onslaught of Krampus.

- The official trailer linked from Legendary's YouTube channel -

Released in 2010 and a personal favourite of mine, Rare Exports is a film set in remote Finnish town that is unbeknown to the townspeople in the shadow of a colossal mountain constructed by the Saami people many centuries past to trap Santa Claus. In the hopes, they could stop him terrorising their people and stealing their children. Unfortunately for the townsfolk, the mountain is currently in the process of been mined for rare natural resources, and it is not long before Santa Claus, and his 'elves' can escape out into the surrounding area.

- The official trailer linked from Icon Film Distribution's YouTube channel -

Released in 1997 and in all honesty one of the worst horror films ever to make it to any sized screen, Jack Frost is so bad its good. With odd graphics, dark humoured jokes and cringe-worthy lines throughout - Jack Frost is a film that has to be seen to be believed. If you have ever pondered what would happen if a prison transport collided with a snowbank and a biohazard vehicle then ponder no more!

- The official trailer linked from YouTube Movies YouTube channel -

If any of the above titles have piqued your interest, I have taken the liberty of linking them to their Wikipedia entries where you can find out more about the movies (via their name). And have also included a trailer where possible so that you can get a glimpse of what the films have in store for you.

Thank you very much if you have read the post this far and have a fantastic Christmas no matter what (if anything) you decide to watch!


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