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A List of the Best Christmas Movies to Watch on Disney+ This Year

lifestyle, amazon, a list of the best christmas movies to watch on disney+ this year

With so many streaming services out there, there’s no one of them that’ll gather every all-time best Christmas movies in one spot. But, if you’re looking for one service that has a heck of a lot of them — especially if you’re looking for Christmas movies for kids — your best bet just might be Disney+. There you can find it all: half-hour and hour-long shorts for the toddlers, animated Christmas movies for the kids, Disney Channel and ABC Family originals for the tweens and teens and even a few holiday-themed romantic comedies for the adults. There are even a few all-timers in there that the whole family can enjoy together (Hello, Home Alone). But because there are so many, we’ve rounded up the very best Christmas movies on Disney Plus for the family to enjoy.

If you don’t have Disney+, you can still gather the family around the TV and watch a Christmas movie together on the other streaming services, since there’s plenty of Christmas movies on Netflix, HBO Max, Hulu and Amazon Prime Video. Whether it’s a funny Christmas movie, a Christmas horror film or a combo of all of the above, they’re the perfect thing to enjoy together after the presents are opened, the food is eaten and you’re too full and happy to move.

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The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special (2022)

Can the Guardians of the Galaxy also be the Guardians of the Holiday Spirit? Will Rocket learn to have some holiday cheer? Will Groot wear a string of Christmas lights? Only time will tell but, in the meantime, there’s always the LEGO Guardians of the Galaxy advent calendar. This is expected to come to Disney+ some time in December.

lifestyle, amazon, a list of the best christmas movies to watch on disney+ this year

2) Coming Soon: The Santa Clauses (2022)

This is kind of a cheat, since it’s actually a TV series, and not a movie. But hey, isn’t everything a movie if you sit on your couch all day and watch it all in one go? In it, the Santa played by Tim Allen starts to think about hanging up the red suit and finding a successor. It’ll start streaming on Disney+ on November 16.

a group of stuffed animals sitting on top of a building

The Muppet Christmas Carol (1992)

Kermit, Miss Piggy, Fozzie and all the rest of the Muppet friends teach Scrooge — played by Michael Caine, who takes his role as seriously as any other and doesn’t do any winking just because he’s acting with Muppets — the true meaning of Christmas. In addition to the iconic holiday story, this version of A Christmas Carol features original songs by Paul Williams (who wrote “Rainbow Connection”). For diehard fans, a deleted song, “When Love Is Gone,” will be included in a “restored” version coming to Disney+ on December 11.

a young boy brushing his teeth in front of a mirror

Home Alone

When you think of Christmas, you think of getting cozy, relaxing on the couch and foiling some robbers. Well, now that Home Alone has been a staple for more than 30 years, you do. In this holiday classic, Kevin McCallister learns about the importance of family — and gets the upper hand on some burglars — when he’s accidentally left alone to defend his house over the holidays. Home Alone 2, Home Alone 3, Home Alone 4 and Home Alone 5 are all also on Disney+, but you’ll have to look elsewhere for Angels With Filthy Souls.

a close up of a stuffed animal

What’s This (1993)

The only Christmas move you can appropriately start watching in September, The Nightmare Before Christmas is a stop-motion holiday mash-up. If someone tells you it’s too Halloweeny for December, point out that it’s the movie that gave us “What’s This?”— aka one of the greatest Christmas songs of all time.

lifestyle, amazon, a list of the best christmas movies to watch on disney+ this year

Mickey’s Christmas Carol (1983)

There have been dozens of adaptations of the Charles Dickens classic of the years — and Muppet version may have claimed the top spot on this list because of its feature length — but some (me) might say that this one is the best. It distills all the essential elements of the story into 25 all-killer-no-filler minutes. Plus, Goofy is Jacob Marley!

lifestyle, amazon, a list of the best christmas movies to watch on disney+ this year

LEGO Star Wars Holiday Special (2020)

The original Star Wars Holiday Special was notoriously bad, so the LEGO crew took a big risk by attempting another one. This time, it works! It follows Rey, Finn, Poe, Rose and Chewie for a “Life Day” adventure with the signature zany LEGO sense of humor (and plenty of delicious tip-yip).

lifestyle, amazon, a list of the best christmas movies to watch on disney+ this year

Prep & Landing Series (2009)

This funny, 22-minute short follows the elves that prepare houses for the arrival of Santa’s sleigh. If it’s a hit in your house, you can follow it up with Prep & Landing: Operation Secret Santa and Prep & Landing: Naughty vs. Nice.

Tommy Sands standing in front of a building

Babes in Toyland (1961)

In some parts of the country, it’s an annual tradition to watch Babes in Toyland as the first movie of the holiday season with a yearly viewing on Thanksgiving Day. (There’s also an earlier, 1934 version often shown on T-Day, but unfortunately that one’s not on Disney+.) When Mary Contrary, Tom Piper and a host of other storybook characters getting mixed up in a fantasy story that takes place in an enchanted Toyland, it takes a holiday-worthy march of wooden soldiers to set things right.

a man wearing a hat

A Christmas Carol (2009)

Yes, another Dickens — it seems you can watch a different take on A Christmas Carol every week from Thanksgiving to New Year’s and never run out of options. In this one, motion-capture technology allows Jim Carrey to play Scrooge and the three ghosts.

lifestyle, amazon, a list of the best christmas movies to watch on disney+ this year

Duck the Halls (2016)

This animated short stars Mickey and his pals, but it’s anything but sweet and treacly. In it, Donald decide he wants to stay for Christmas instead of migrate south — but he can’t really handle the cold. The resulting travails are silly in a way that’s almost more reminiscent of shows like Ren and Stimpy thank your typical Mickey movie. If your family finds it hilarious, The Wonderful World of Mickey Mouse is done in the same style.

a large brown teddy bear wearing a hat

The Santa Clause (1994)

Re-watch the OG before the new series begins. Tim Allen plays a toy salesman who, through a wacky turn of events, winds up taking up the reins as the next Santa Claus. If Allen is your preferred Kris Kringle, Disney+ also has The Santa Clause 2 and The Santa Clause 3: The Escape Clause.

lifestyle, amazon, a list of the best christmas movies to watch on disney+ this year

A Muppets Christmas: Letters to Santa (2008)

Here’s one for when you want to watch Muppet mayhem with nary a Scrooge in sight. Realizing he forgot to send a few letters to Santa, Gonzo recruits his fellow Muppets to hand-deliver them to the North Pole. This one features lots of fun cameos from stars like Whoopi Goldberg, Nathan Lane, Uma Thurman and more.

lifestyle, amazon, a list of the best christmas movies to watch on disney+ this year

Olaf’s Frozen Adventure (2017)

If it’s winter, that means Frozen is on your kids’ mind, and this holiday-themed, 22-minute special is a must-watch. In it, Anna and Elsa realize that their estrangement means they don’t have any family holiday traditions of their own, so Olaf searches the kingdom to find them some. And if that’s not enough Olaf for them, they can follow it up with Once Upon a Snowman, which goes through the events of Frozen from Olaf’s point of view.

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Anna Kendrick wearing a hat

Noelle (2019)

This was Disney’s first big, original holiday movie for Disney+ way back when the service debuted. It centers on Santa’s children: His son, Nick (Bill Hader) goes missing when he’s supposed to take over as Santa Claus and his daughter, Noelle (Anna Kendrick), has to put things right to save Christmas.

lifestyle, amazon, a list of the best christmas movies to watch on disney+ this year

Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmas (1999)

If you only have a little bit of time and need a quick dose of Christmas cheer, Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmas is an hourlong anthology of holiday-themed shorts starring classic Disney characters. You can follow it up with Mickey’s Twice Upon a Christmas, which is also in the anthology format, or Pluto’s Christmas Tree (from the ’50s!), which is just six minutes long.

lifestyle, amazon, a list of the best christmas movies to watch on disney+ this year

17) While You Were Sleeping (1995)

You won’t find any magical elves in this movie, and no scenes are set at the North Pole, but the events do take place in Chicago at Christmastime, so it has enough holiday cheer to count. In it, a transit worker played by Sandra Bullock saves the life of a man who has fallen into a coma. In the hospital, his family mistakenly believes she’s his fiancée — which causes complications when she actually starts to fall for his brother.

lifestyle, amazon, a list of the best christmas movies to watch on disney+ this year

The Nutcracker and the Four Realms (2018)

It’s The Nutcracker reimagined as an epic adventure. After Clara finds a mysterious gift from her mother, she travels to the fantastical Four Realms, only to discover everything isn’t quite as sweet as it seems. Will she have to save the Realms for Mother Ginger, or is something else going on?

Isla Fisher, Jillian Bell are posing for a picture

Godmothered (2020)

In this movie, Jillian Bell plays a fairy godmother-in-training who tries to help a struggling single mom in order to prove that the world still needs fairy godmothers. It’s more of the “set at Christmastime” style of movie than the “really about Christmas” kind, so throw it on if you only need a little dose of the holidays.

a man that is standing in the snow

One Magic Christmas (1985)

It’s a Wonderful Life usually gets all the spotlight when it comes to holiday guardian-angel movies, but this film also features a heavenly protector. Mary Steenburgen plays a mom having a down-on-her-luck Christmas, and Harry Dean Stanton turns up as an angel sent to watch over her family.

lifestyle, amazon, a list of the best christmas movies to watch on disney+ this year

Home Sweet Home Alone (2021)

Home Sweet Home Alone follows another young kid defending his home from intruders. This time, it’s Max Mercer (not Kevin McCallister) who has to thwart a couple trying to retrieve a priceless heirloom from his house. Be on the lookout for a cameo from Kevin’s big bro, Buzz!

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Winnie the Pooh: A Very Merry Pooh Year (2002)

This hour-long special starts at the holidays and ends with the gang from the 100 Acre Wood making resolutions for New Year’s, so you can watch it at any time in December. And it’s gentle enough to show to even the toddler-sized Disney fans.

Josh Zuckerman, Bryan Cranston are posing for a picture

‘Twas the Night (2001)

This Disney Channel original stars Bryan Cranston as a ne ‘er-do-well who is in trouble with some criminals, so he hides out with his brother’s family. Things change, though, when he gets hold of a device that can freeze time. Where’d he get it? From Santa, of course. (How else do you think the Big Guy can make so many deliveries in one night?)

lifestyle, amazon, a list of the best christmas movies to watch on disney+ this year

24) Ice Age: A Mammoth Christmas (2011)

It’s Christmas with the Ice Age crew, including Mannie, Ellie, Peaches, Crash, Eddie, Sid, Diego — even Scrat gets in on the fun! That is, until Sid ruins one of Manny’s traditions, and has to make his case to Santa to stay off the Naughty list.

lifestyle, amazon, a list of the best christmas movies to watch on disney+ this year

The Disney Holiday Sing-Along (2020)

Consider it modern caroling: You can gather the family around the TV and belt out tunes like “What’s This,” “It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas,” “Do You Want to Build a Snowman,” and “Santa Claus Is Comin’ to Town” with stars like Leslie Odom, Jr., Michael Bublé, Chloe x Halle and BTS. Who in the family has the best pipes?

a group of people looking at each other

The Christmas Star (1986)

Think of it as a bad Santa before Bad Santa: A counterfeiter escapes from jail because he looks like St. Nick, then enlists a couple of kids who believe he’s the real deal to help him find some stashed loot. Do you think he learns a Christmas lesson?

lifestyle, amazon, a list of the best christmas movies to watch on disney+ this year

27) High School Musical: The Musical: The Holiday Special (2020)

Who wants to see Olivia Rodrigo starring in a holiday special? This oddly punctuated 45-minute Christmas treat features the stars of High School Musical: The Series performing their favorite holiday songs. Prepare to sing along with “This Christmas,” “Feliz Navidad” and other seasonal favorites.

Hallee Hirsh, Spencer Breslin that are standing in the snow

The Ultimate Christmas Present (2001)

When kids find Santa’s weather-making machine, they use it to make a snow day in Los Angeles. But eventually they learn that there’s a price to pay for playing with forces of nature.

lifestyle, amazon, a list of the best christmas movies to watch on disney+ this year

Full Court Miracle (2003)

For anyone celebrating Hanukkah, this movie follows a group of high school basketball players at Philadelphia Hebrew Academy. The team struggles, but then the players start to notice similarities between the life of their new coach and the story of Judah.

Christina Milian et al. that are standing in the snow

Snowglobe (2007)

A one-time ABC Family original movie, Snowglobe stars Christina Milian as a Christmas-obsessed woman who learns she can magically transport herself into the holiday village inside her snowglobe. When she realizes her choices are starting to affect the world inside, she has to figure out how to balance her real life and the world of Christmas enchantment.

Jason Dolley, Eric Allan, Bradley Steven Perry posing for the camera

Good Luck Charlie, It’s Christmas (2011)

Based on the Disney Channel series, this feature-length movie follows the Duncans on a road trip to Amy’s parents’ house for the holidays. Does it go smoothly? Of course not.

a group of people in costumes

Beauty and the Beast: The Enchanted Christmas (1997)

This hour-long special takes place while Belle is still a prisoner and the Beast is still, well, a Beast. It recounts a Christmas that brings everyone in the castle closer together.

a group of men standing next to a dog

Santa Buddies: The Legend of Santa Paws

A spin-off of the Air Bud series, Santa Buddies features a team of rascally pups that have to save Christmas. There’s a prequel, The Search for Santa Paws, and its sequel, Santa Paws 2: The Santa Pups. That should be enough pets to last all through the holiday season!

Mark-Paul Gosselaar sitting on a bench

12 Dates of Christmas (2011)

Another movie that originally appeared on the ABC Family channel, this Christmas rom-com stars Amy Smart and Mark-Paul Gosselaar as a couple who keep reliving their Christmas Eve blind date, Groundhog Day-style. Kate (Smart) must figure out how to break the cycle and move on to Christmas morning.

lifestyle, amazon, a list of the best christmas movies to watch on disney+ this year

35) Christmas…Again?! (2021)

If 12 Dates of Christmas isn’t enough Groundhog Day for you, this Disney Channel original movie works on a similar premise: When Rowena has a bad holiday, she asks a neighborhood Santa for a do-over and winds up getting more than she bargained for.

lifestyle, amazon, a list of the best christmas movies to watch on disney+ this year

The Mistle-Tones

Here’s one for all the a cappella lovers who know every line to Pitch Perfect: When Holly is rejected from joining the legendary musical group The Snow Belles, she decides to form her own holiday carol-singing crew, The Mistle-Tones. And you better believe there’s going to be a Christmas Eve sing-off!

a group of people standing around a table

Richie Rich’s Christmas Wish (1998)

You’re not seeing things — that’s not Macaulay Culkin as Richie Rich. He was recast for this direct-to-video holiday movie, which is a twist on It’s a Wonderful Life with Richie Rich in George Bailey’s spot.

a person wearing a costume

Decorating Disney: Holiday Magic (2017)

For those who like getting a behind-the-scenes look at the Disney parks, this 42-minute special shows how Walt Disney World and Disneyland are transformed into winter wonderlands each year. And, for another look at the parks during the holidays, there’s Disney Fairy Tale Weddings: Holiday Magic, which is a similar length.

a person sitting in a chair

I’ll Be Home for Christmas (1998)

JTT fans already know this one: Jonathan Taylor Thomas stars in a Planes, Trains and Automobiles-style comedy about all an ill-fated trip home for the holidays, and all the obstacles that need to be surmounted to get home in time. The twist: He’s a self-centered college student who wants to get home to claim his father’s classic car. Maybe he’ll learn a thing or two about the Christmas spirit on the way?

lifestyle, amazon, a list of the best christmas movies to watch on disney+ this year

40) Ernest Saves Christmas (1988)

In this zany Christmas comedy, Old Saint Nick has decided to retire — but he needs Ernest’s help to pass the job off to a new Santa Claus. Is he up to the task?

a fire place sitting in front of a store

Arendelle Castle Yule Log

It’s not a movie, per se, but it should be a yearly tradition: Disney has a streamable Yule Log that looks like a fireplace straight out of the castle of Arendelle. There’s no plot, no music, no characters and nothing happens, just three hours of a crackling fire. Throw it on while you’re opening presents to feel cozy.

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