Merry Christmas, gentle readers! Today is a day for spending time with loved ones, yelling at those loved ones, giving them gifts, refilling their drinks. It's also a day for popping in a DVD in the living room while working through a food coma. What will it be? The list of movies that have explored this eggnog-drenched holiday is nearly as long as Santa's own. Now action, now rom-com, now satire and thriller!
With some strong 'nog in hand, we took a look back at some of the very best and very worst a big screen Noel has to offer and plucked out our favorite elements from each. Gather the family round the computer screen and take in MTV News' Christmas Movie Awards.
Best Santa – Dan Aykroyd in "Trading Places"
When Louis Winthorpe III hits rock bottom, he soars to the highest ranks of cinematic Santas. Booted from his cushy spot as a master of the financial universe, Louis ends up bunking in with a call girl and crashing the Christmas party at his old brokerage firm dressed like the gnarliest St Nick around. Life is cursed, suicide is attempted and a slab of smoked salmon is pilfered. On the bus ride home, Winthorpe pulls the fishy filet out of his suit and gnaws on it as if it were his own flesh. Gross out comedy at its finest. His fellow commuters are less than amused.
Best Elf – Will Ferrell in "Elf"
Obvious? Yes. Necessary? Hell yes. When a human raised as an elf can survive purely through the consumption of candy canes and candy corn, when his greatest hope in the world is simply to hold hands with Zooey Deschanel, when he can accuse an imposter Santa of smelling like "beef and cheese"—now that is an elf we are proud to call the greatest ever.
Best Meal – "A Christmas Story"
Nothing brings a family together like some din-din at the Chop Suey Palace. Unless some outrageously stereotypical waiters are there to butcher the words to "Deck the Halls" and "Jingle Bells." In which case it gets truly awesome. And then the owner hacks off the head of a Peking duck right in front of your eyes. As Ralphie puts it, "All was right with the world."
Best Party – "Die Hard"
Co-workers are hooking up, snorting illegal substances, photocopying their butts...even before Hans Gruber arrives with a couple machine gun-toting henchman, this is the most kickass holiday party in history.
Best Traffic Jam – "Die Hard 2"
You think you've suffered through some nightmarish bumper-to-bumper gridlock? Imagine if some terrorists take over an airport, your wife's plane is unable to land and quickly running out of fuel, and then on your way to capture the bad guys you get stuck in a bit of inch-a-minute holiday traffic. If you're Bruce Willis, you think fast, hop a news helicopter and land on a plane taxiing down the runway. That's just how you roll.
Best Sex – "Reindeer Games"
We're going to say the boom-boom session between Charlize Theron and Ben Affleck is the only thing that can ever qualify as the "best" of anything in this mess of a movie. There are a ton of silly plot twists and Gary Sinise rocks a ridiculous 'do. But anytime Miss Theron gives it up during the holiday season should qualify as a Christmas miracle.
Best Kidnapping – "National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation"
Chevy Chase made a dumb-dumb move when he put a down payment on a backyard swimming pool before receiving his Christmas bonus. Randy Quaid makes the best of a sticky financial situation when he kidnaps Chevy's boss in the hopes of squeezing him for the needed cash. Take note, frustrated workers of America! The cockamamie plan actually works.
Best Case of Parental Neglect –"Home Alone 2: Lost in New York"
Kevin McCallister's parents somehow avoided the wrath of Child Protective Services after jetting off to Paris without their young son in the first film. This time around, rather than handcuff Kev to their themselves, these 'rents allow their kid to board the wrong plane, spend a couple days chillaxing at the Plaza Hotel and once again battling with the worst criminals in the world. Mr. and Mrs. McCallister? You've been served!