Playwright David E Talbert enters the Christmas canon with this Netflix original starring Forest Whitaker as an aloof toymaker tasked with caring for his estranged granddaughter on Christmas. An old-school musical fantasy brought to life through new-school VFX and cutting-edge choreography, the film is extremely busy and a little unfocused – not that most viewers would notice. They’ll be too busy being dazzled by the explosive visuals and genuine heart at the core of the film. Rated PG.
When the weather outside is frightful, nothing warms the soul better than the glow of the television set. Over the last few years, many networks and streamers have muscled in on the Hallmark Channel’s corner of the corny Christmas movie market, but none have churned out the veritable avalanche of holiday cheer like Netflix. Every season for the past decade or so, the platform has produced masses of winkingly cheesy, unabashedly saccharine yuletide content, to the point where its catalogue is currently bulging like an overstuffed stocking.
But not all Christmas movies are created equal. Sure, the stories may be awfully similar, but the quality can vary wildly. Ideally, you want something that hits that spot between sweet and silly, striking a good balance between romcom absurdity and a genuine expression of seasonal joy. So let us help you sort the proverbial shiny new bikes from the lumps of coal. Here are the best Christmas movies to stream on Netflix this year.