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Just two weeks until Christmas and less until Hannukah. WOW. Where does the time go? To think this is the last Christmas of the current decade. WOW.
If you’re like me and starting to enjoy some cold weather and eager to snuggle under a blanket with your favorite cuppa and watch an uplifting Christmas program, here are my TOP 7 non-religious choices (not to mention Poirot’s Christmas previously written about here) in no specific order:
#1. Babes in Toyland (1986)
This is a well-made TV remake for the whole family of the classic story starring a young KEANU REEVES and DREW BARRYMORE. Of course you can’t forget the 1934 version with Laurel and Hardy.
BEST BIT: You rarely get the chance to see Keanu Reeves singing and dancing around in tights.
#2. The Most Wonderful Time of the Year (2008)
This is standard Hallmark Christmas fare with heart and charm starring Brooke Burns as Jen, a corporate analyst and single mother, tackles Christmas with a business-like approach until her uncle (comedy legend Henry Winkler) arrives with a handsome stranger in tow.
BEST BIT: If you were a fan of Henry Winkler in HAPPY DAYS, you’ll love seeing him light up your t.v. screen with Christmas cheer.
#3. Dear Santa (2011)
Dear Santa is more standard tv fare with a lot of heart, cheesiness and for some reason I have to turn it on every Christmas just cuz. Starring Amy Acker and David Haydn-Jones, the story focuses on a trust fund brat (Acker) who has to figure out how to live life w/o her parents’ support and ends up falling in love with a widower who runs a soup kitchen (Haydn-Jones) and his sweet daughter who asked Santa for a mom for Christmas.
BEST BIT: Acker does a great job overcoming the cheesiness of the part to bring heart to her role of Crystal making you want to root for her.
#4. One Special Night (1999)
Julie Andrews and James Garner (Victor/Victoria) portray two strangers who take refuge in a small cabin during a stormy winter night and, despite their differences, or perhaps because of them, they are undeniably drawn to one another in this holiday classic.
BEST BIT: James Garner and Julie Andrews have great on-screen chemistry. This is about second chances and older love (a rarity in Christmas rom-coms).
#5. Bob Hope Christmas Special (1968)
Just watched this the other night. If you like Bob Hope, support our troops and want some nostalgia and laughs – you’ll enjoy this special that is not so much about Christmas as it is good cheer with a vignette of clips from his USO show through Vietnam and Southeast Asia. Co-starring Raquel Welch, Elaine Dunn, Phil Cosby and more.
BEST BIT: Seeing Raquel Welch dancing and singing was a treat. I had no idea.
Lawrence Welk band plays Christmas classics and features some familiar faces such as The Lennon Sisters. Black and white t.v. programming provides nostalgia.
BEST BIT: The Lennon Sisters‘ “The Christmas Toy” was charming as was a beautiful harp solo.
#7. DOCTOR WHO: Voyage of the Damned (2007)
Imagine Titanic but as a spaceship from the planet Sto heading for London, England, to experience earth’s festivities. David Tennant is The Doctor who has just lost Rose and finds purpose and cheer again thanks to a charming ensemble of characters including a charming and adorable Kylie Minogue (Astrid) and Star Wars‘ Jimmy Vee (Bannakaffalatta).
There you go. 7 of my recommendations for non-religious Christmas viewing on Amazon Prime. Do you have a favorite I haven’t listed?