Mock Draft Monday: Holiday Movies

We here at River City Rogue like two things in particular: being festive and mock drafts. We decided to combine the two and pick some of our favorite holiday related things, starting with movies, because that is obviously the end-all-be-all of holiday related discussions. Let the debate begin! (Direct all discrepancies to twitter dot com)

1. Die Hard (1988)

Bruce Willis, in his prime, with hair. This is the movie that spawned a thousand cultural references – once you’ve seen Die Hard, the world of “Yippee Ki Yay Motherfucker” “Hans Gruber” “Nakatomi Building” and SO MUCH MORE are opened to you. Glass? Who gives a shit about glass? Every time you watch any episode of How I Met Your Mother, you’ll start going, “ohhhh yeah – I get that now.”

-Courtney Eckerle (@courtneyeckerle)

2. A Christmas Story (1983)

This movie is such a staple in my family that is usually consumed more than once a season in my house and I visited the actual house where part of the movie was shot in Cleveland this summer. I usually end up quoting the majority of the movie under my breath whenever I watch it to, so many classic scenes.

-Scott Manze (@ScottManze)

3. It’s a Wonderful Life (1946)

I believe the reason It’s a Wonderful Life leaves such a profound impact over seventy years after its’ release is because of its protagonist’s relatability and the film’s considerable warmth. George Bailey (Jimmy Stewart) feels incredible guilt for letting his loved ones down as he’s duped by the corrupt Mr. Potter. This leads him to hit rock bottom on Christmas Eve, wishing he was never born. Luckily, George’s guardian angel Clarence shows him that he has made difference in the lives of his countless friends and loved ones. Stewart and director Frank Capra created an ageless holiday classic that is refreshingly idealistic and unabashedly sentimental. The film’s deft blend of love and redemption ensure it will be adored by posterity.

-James Bussell (@James_Bussell)

4. Elf (2003)

This pick, I really like. One of Will Ferrell’s best performances. Could’ve gone first overall in my opinion. Definitely became an instant classic in a short timespan. The only complaint people have about this movie is that it plays too much on Freeform(ABC Family).

-Skyler Chase (@Skychase94)

5. Miracle on 34th Street (1947)

Placed with the fifth overall pick I was stuck considering Home Alone, Christmas Vacation and The Nightmare Before Christmas. However, the emotions of joy and gratitude from the Jaguars successes sent me to an easy selection of Miracle on 34th Street. Most channels have it airing throughout Christmas week. Even though I don’t own it on DVD, the 1947 classic is a key film to build my Christmas franchise around for the next century.

-Richard Miller (@MillerOnSports)

6. A Charlie Brown Christmas (1965)

A movie that I actually hated as a child (I was a troubled kid), I figured this would be a higher pick so I feel fortunate it was still there. My favorite part has to be the way that Snoopy eats his bones like chips.

-Keith Manze (@KeithManze)

7. Home Alone (1990)

Everyone’s favorite kid during the Christmas season. Although I’ve seen this movie tons of times, whenever it comes on, I still watch it. The witty, troublemaking kid and seeing how he deals with two criminals is definitely a movie to watch during the Christmas season.

-Mike Yazigi (@Mike_Yazigi94)

8. The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993)

This is a good movie to nap through.

-Wale Olaogun (@theMCwale)

9. National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (1989)

This is also a good movie to nap through. (Ed. Note: Difficult to nap through the scene below)

-Wale Olaogun (@theMCwale)

10. How the Grinch Stole Christmas (2000)

Jim Carrey makes this movie one of the must watches of the holiday season. This is a great movie because there is always someone in the family who isn’t a “fan of Christmas”, otherwise known as the Grinch of your family. Such a classic movie if you like comedy, and dogs (Max).

-Mike Yazigi (@Mike_Yazigi94)

11. The Polar Express (2004)

You love the soundtrack. You know you do. Plus, at the time the animation was top of the line. Tom Hanks was wonderful as always.

-Keith Manze (@KeithManze)

12. Bad Santa (2003)

In the complete opposite direction of my first pick, Bad Santa has delivered gut-punch laughs and crude jokes with holiday cheer. I can even get choked up seeing legends Bernie Mac and John Ritter in fun roles alongside Billy Bob Thornton.

-Richard Miller (@MillerOnSports)

13. The Santa Clause (1994)

First off, the title is a pun. Another weird reason I like this movie is as a kid I always tried to make connections. Example being, his initials were S.C. for Scott Calvin and Santa Claus. Those are my initials too! This is the same reason I watched SportsCenter growing up. Also I was born in 1994, same year the movie came out. So there’s my weird reasons for liking it.

-Skyler Chase (@Skychase94)

The-Santa-Clause-02-DI-1

14. Gremlins (1984)

I feel for parents searching for the perfect Christmas gift for their children, but Billy’s dad’s quest is especially misguided. He decides to buy a mogwai from a creepy antique shop because apparently a more suitable gift like a Harry & David gourmet fruit basket with gourmet pears or a puppy is too passé. Here’s a tip: it’s never a great idea to purchase a pet that comes with strict rules that must be followed to avoid extreme violence. I don’t care how cute it is. Mogwais can’t eat after midnight because it screws up with their sleep schedule, have to avoid bright lights like they are in concussion protocol and can’t get wet. No bathing? Their stench must be awful. Anyway, make smart decisions while shopping this Christmas season, you don’t want to have blood on your hands.

-James Bussell (@James_Bussell)

15. Santa Claus is Coming to Town (1970)

Hot take: This is the best of the claymation Christmas specials, not its more well-known cousin Rudolph. Mickey Rooney voicing Kris Kringle, Fred Astaire dancing and singing and one of the all time great villains, Burgermeister Meisterburger. Plus, I dare you to not sing “Put One Foot in Front of the Other” the rest of the day after watching.

-Scott Manze (@ScottManze)

16. Kiss Kiss Bang Bang (2005)

This isn’t just a great Christmas movie, it’s a great movie, period. So great, in fact, that it simultaneously resurrected two careers: Robert Downey Jr. and Val Kilmer. A noir murder mystery + Christmas = a flawlessly executed movie that you can watch every year without ever getting bored with the banter.

-Courtney Eckerle (@courtneyeckerle)

17. I’ll Be Home For Christmas (1998)

90’s classic JTT, otherwise known as Jonathan Taylor Thomas, at his prime. If that doesn’t sell you immediately, throw in Jessica Biel, a Van Wilder-esque plot line a sassy younger sister, and an estranged family coming together to celebrate Christmas – BAM. Instant 90s-nostalgic Christmas classic that doesn’t make you do any emotional heavy lifting.

-Courtney Eckerle (@courtneyeckerle)

18. The Family Stone (2005)

An ensemble feature that features enough family disfunction to have been filmed at one of my own family holiday gatherings. A real “who’s who” that features Luke Wilson saying “wow” just like his brother and Rachel McAdams, who I am in love with. Plus, just enough sentimental value to make it a true holiday movie.

-Scott Manze (@ScottManze)

19. The Muppet Christmas Carol (1992)

Celebrating its 25th anniversary, The Muppet Christmas Carol is one of the most charming and poignant of all holiday movies. Michael Caine makes for a terrific Ebenezer Scrooge, brilliantly playing off his Muppet co-stars, even as he sings off-key. Highlights for me include Gonzo as Charles Dickens, the cantankerous duo Statler and Waldorf as Marley and Marley, and how all the Muppets have American accents in Dickensian London. This is a perfect movie for when you feel grouchy because watching it is guaranteed way to experience a similar epiphany to Mr. Scrooge. The Muppets deliver joy! Bask in it!

-James Bussell (@James_Bussell)

michael-caine-1

20. The Santa Clause 2 (2002)

I listed a bunch a weird reasons for why I picked the first one. Those reasons are why I kept watching these movies, but I really enjoy both of these movies. They have plenty of corny jokes, which are my favorite type. The storyline of how he became Santa is why the first movie got picked first by me, but this is a good holiday love story thats not over-the-top sappy.

-Skyler Chase (@Skychase94)

21. Scrooged (1988)

I stayed in the same realm of comedy with darkness and a clear message with Bill Murray’s Scrooged. I even watched it twice on AMC last Wednesday. The catchy tunes, references to Ghostbusters and even Bobcat Goldthwait makes this 1988 twist on A Christmas Carol one of my annual viewings.

-Richard Miller (@MillerOnSports)

22. Emmet Otter’s Jug-Band Christmas (1977)

I had the worst pick in the draft so all the mainstream good stuff was gone. Emmett and friends are all Muppets so you know it can’t be bad. It’s worth a watch if you have never seen it before. Very homely.

-Keith Manze (@KeithManze)

23. Home Alone 2: Lost in New York (1992)

The young Kevin McAlister is back but this time he got to go on vacation with his family. Well, sort of. He got to the airport and went on the wrong flight. The young kid went to one of the biggest cities in the world in NYC, and dealt with two old foes again. Definitely one of those sequels that is as good as the original.

-Mike Yazigi (@Mike_Yazigi94)

24. Frosty the Snowman (1969)

This is a great movie to nap through (short nap).

-Wale Olaogun (@theMCwale)

25. How the Grinch Stole Christmas (1966)

This is also a good movie to grab a short nap through. (Ed. Note: Baffled that this one finished below the remake)

-Wale Olaogun (@theMCwale)

26. Christmas with the Kranks (2004)

Couldn’t think of any other movie. But Tim Allen in a Christmas flick seems like a must-see (i.e.: Santa Clause series) it’s an okay movie, but worth the fourth round pick.

-Mike Yazigi (@Mike_Yazigi94)

27. Olive, the Other Reindeer (1999)

I had to pick a cheesy movie. Full of silly songs and clever puns (like Richard Stands thinking the Pledge of Allegiance was about him), Drew Barrymore plays the lead in this straight-to-DVD animation.

-Keith Manze (@KeithManze)

28. Love Actually (2003)

Not knowing how exactly to close with my final pick, I decided to go with a more-recent movie my wife introduced to me the first couple years I visited her family in late December. Love Actually, filled with a more than star-studded cast, has joined my rotation of holiday picks by way of marriage. Peggy and her mom always find time for early Rick Grimes, Liam Neeson, Colin Firth and the satisfaction of one of the more entertaining romantic comedies of the last 15 years.

-Richard Miller (@MillerOnSports)

29. The Night Before (2015)

This movie is really funny *Seth Rogen laugh*. It’s nice to watch an untraditional holiday movie when you’re tired of all the other cliché holiday movies. Just like any movie with Seth Rogen in it, it’s not really one to watch with the family.

-Skyler Chase (@Skychase94)

Joseph Gordon Levitt;Seth Rogen;Anthony Mackie

30. Trading Places (1983)

Let’s hope your holiday season is less stressful than Dan Aykroyd’s Louis Winthorpe III. Framed as a criminal by the diabolical owners of brokerage firm where he works as an executive; Louis gets fired, is evicted from his home, has his bank account frozen, and loses his fiancé. To make matters worse, Eddie Murphy’s street hustler Billy Ray Valentine takes his place at the firm and moves into his home–Murphy’s Law at its most obvious. This series of events leads to a self-destructive bender for the ages. While donning a ratty Santa suit, Louis drunkenly sneaks into his former company’s Christmas party and tries to plant drugs in his replacement’s desk. After he’s escorted out by security, Louis takes the bus, finds salmon stuck in his beard, has a stray dog urinate on him, and discovers his pistol is out of bullets. We’ve all been there. Please stay safe this holiday season.

-James Bussell (@James_Bussell)

31. The Bishop’s Wife (1947)

A classic starring the impeccably smooth Cary Grant as a angel, David Niven as a stressed out bishop and Loretta Young as his wife who just needs a little attention tells the classic tale of not being to micro in your worries, especially around the holidays. Fun fact, Grant and Niven’s roles were actually going to be reversed, but it’s hard to imagine it the other way around.

-Scott Manze (@ScottManze)

32. The Holiday (2006)

It’s sappy, it’s a little far-fetched, but hey, it’s Christmas. This could have been a weird and stupid movie, but THE CAST. Solid performances by Cameron Diaz and Jude Law, Kate Winslet makes it a classic and Jack Black is an absolute stand out – and also the reason your boyfriend will watch this movie without complaining too much.

-Courtney Eckerle (@courtneyeckerle)

What are your go-to holiday movies? Let us know in the comments and keep the conversation going on twitter and Facebook.