What are the best holiday movies to watch high?
American Christmas isn’t complete without watching at least one holiday movie, snuggled on the couch with your loved ones. Some of those hit films are classics in their own right, and some are a giant cheesefest, but there are many that can be enjoyed best while stoned.
There’s a holiday movie for all tastes, but here is a curated list of the best films to watch while high:
Adam Sandler’s 8 Crazy Nights (2002)
8 Crazy Nights holds the distinction of being the best known Hanukkah movie, and the second-best Hanukkah-themed animation (The Rugrats’ Hanukkah episode comes first, sorry Adam Sandler). Ignore the poor reviews calling the movie dour and immature: they were written by Christian critics who don’t understand the neuroses and suffering inherent in every Jewish holiday, even during the Festival of Lights. Viewers will enjoy the classic pre-digital animation style, Sandler’s darkly juvenile humor, and a special edition version of “Chanukah Song” in the end credits that will have you singing along, but only if you can contain your laughter.
Starring SNL alum Will Ferrell in one of his first films after leaving the sketch show, Elf is both the classic hero’s journey of a young man trying to find where he belongs, and a slapstick comedy about a bumbling, lovable buffoon who just wants to spread Christmas cheer to post-9/11 New York City. This movie has everything: family drama, romance drama, and Ferrell in yellow tights. While Ferrell and James Caan are immediately recognizable, there are so many stars cast in supporting roles that you’ll definitely be shouting “No way, she/he is in this???” multiple times throughout.
Home Alone (1990)
An especially relatable film this year when we’re all feeling a little like Kevin, trapped at home during the holidays without our family. Hopefully that’s where the similarities end, and we don’t all need to construct elaborate Rube Goldberg machines to defend our homesteads from burglars. This is an especially good film to watch with multiple generations, from grandmas to grandkids. Children are inspired by the cleverness and independence of Kevin, played by a young Macaulay Culkin, while adults will howl at the classic slapstick gags and the double-entendre jokes designed to go right over young ones’ heads.
A Christmas Story (1983)
The real power in A Christmas Story is how deftly it captures Christmas through a child’s eyes: the snow days, the attempts to reach Santa so he knows what gift to bring, being forced to take care of a bratty little brother. An adult Ralphie Parker narrates as he guides us through a memorable Christmas from his childhood in 1950s Indiana, when he was determined to receive a Red Ryder BB gun from Santa Claus, despite repeated claims from the adults around him that “you’ll shoot your eye out.” Full of laughs and gags, this film is a piece of Americana in it’s own right.
A Year Without a Santa Claus (1974)
No Christmas movie list is complete without the inclusion of at least one classic stop-motion animated film. The wackiest and most unique of this niche genre has always been A Year Without a Santa Claus. As the title implies, Santa, suffering a cold and feeling dejected that no one seems to believe in him, decides he needs to put his own health first and skip delivering presents this year so he can rest up in the North Pole. Thus begins a quest to prove that children around the world DO still believe in Santa Claus and the joy he brings to the world on Christmas. The laugh-out-loud sibling rivalry between Snow Miser and Heat Miser will have you singing along for days afterwards.
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