5 Debatable “Christmas” Movies: Are They or Aren’t They?

Posted by Indiana - 19 Dec 2023
5 Debatable 'Christmas' Movies - Are They or Aren’t They? | Uni-versal Extras Blog

Join us on a festive journey as we dive into the holly, jolly, and sometimes heated discussions surrounding the beloved Christmas film.

Whilst many brilliant movies are undeniably festive, and make it onto our Winter watchlists almost every year, there is a hefty handful of Christmas-adjacent films that teeter right on the very edge!

After all, snow and a story loosely set in December does not always a Christmas movie make!

So let’s explore, shall we? Kicking off the list we have…

👦 About A Boy (2002)

Okay, starting strong with a protagonist who lives solely off an inheritance earnt from royalties on a catchy Christmas song called ‘Santa’s Super Sleigh’.

But is it a ‘Christmas movie’?

About A Boy follows bachelor and contented lone wolf, Will, and plucky youngster, Marcus, as they learn to connect with each other. The film even draws to a close on a rather lively Christmas day where the two celebrate together and feast on a table full of traditional festive foods!

Arguably this film is actually a modern-day adaptation of Dr Seuss’ The Grinch if you think about it. A loner learns to open his heart at Christmas time because of a tenacious young character set on getting through to him…

All points considered, we conducted an office poll and the UVE team voted 88% in favour of:

NOAbout A Boy is not a Christmas film.

📕 Bridget Jones’ Diary (2001)

Sure, Bridget Jones’ Diary may not have elves or snowball fights, but it kicks off at Bridget’s parents Christmas party, features a fetching Colin Firth in a Christmas jumper, and ends with a romantic kiss in the snow.

Having said this, the team rightly argued that a large portion of the movie does, in fact, take place in the summertime…

UVE Verdict: NOBridget Jones’ Diary is not a Christmas film.

✈️ The Holiday (2006)

Okay, hear us out.

Whilst The Holiday is about as typically ‘Christmas’ as it gets, we did notice that Christmas day seems to fly by with almost no acknowledgement.

It takes place over the course of the festive period, yes, and features snow, a work Christmas party, and a festive trip overseas – but the day itself plays almost no role whatsoever.

Nevertheless, we took a poll and 95% of the team believed that…

UVE Verdict: YESThe Holiday is definitely a Christmas film.

💰 Trading Places (1983)

Okay so the majority of Trading Places movie does take place throughout the Christmas period, you’re right. Similarly, one of the most famous scenes takes place during an office party set on Christmas eve where Dan Aykroyd shows up in a grubby-looking Father Christmas costume.

On the flip side, we’re also fairly certain that not a whole lot would change about the story’s narrative were it set at literally any other time of year.


UVE Verdict: NOTrading Places is not a Christmas film.

💥 Die Hard (1988)

…and, of course, the debate to end all debates. Die Hard.

Die Hard may take place at Christmas, but we’d argue that – if we were pushed – we’d class it’s main genre as ‘Action’.

The other half of the team are determined to reiterate that the entire plot of the movie is an NYC policeman trying to save his ex-wife who has been taken hostage literally whilst at a Christmas party.

Our poll was a close call, but 55% voted in favour of…

UVE Verdict: YESDie Hard is a Christmas film.

But enough on what we think. Settle the debate for us?

Merry Christmas!

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