Best Movie Genres The Best Movies Released Christmas Day  

Ranker Community
Originally by Ranker Community
3.6k votes 416 voters 69.6k views 74 items

List Rules Only movies initially released (or wide-released) in theaters in the USA on December 25th.

What are the best movies released on Christmas Day? In recent years, December 25 movie releases have become more and more popular, as millions of movie goers seek peace on Earth in quiet movie theaters, away from the hustle, bustle and crazy relatives. Yes, a Christmas Day movie is becoming a huge tradition for many. Major movies are often released around Christmas, but which ones were actually released on the holiday itself? This list includes some of the biggest films that came out on Christmas, so vote for your favorites and vote down any movies you didn't like.

The tradition of major films being released on or around Christmas day really kicked into high gear in the 1990s. Prior to this, a handful of big films had December 25 release dates, but usually only if that date fell on a Friday. Still, going back a few decades, one can find some incredibly brilliant Christmas day film releases, including To Kill a Mockingbird (1962), The Sting (1973), and Empire of the Sun (1987).

Just because a film is released on Christmas Day, doesn't mean it has a holiday feel-good theme. In fact, it may be just the opposite. Perhaps distributors realize that some people are totally burned out on the whole holiday warm and fuzzy stuff by Christmas night? Films like Children of MenHoffa, and The Godfather Part III all came out on Christmas Day -- all decidedly non-joyous flicks.

The gifts are opened, the food's been consumed and the football's been watched. What else to do? Sit in a nice, dark theater, sneak in some of the candy Santa brought you, and kick back with a great Christmas Day movie release, of course. Ho ho ho!

1
159 48
Ranker Video
Robert Duvall, Gregory Peck, William Windom
To Kill a Mockingbird is a 1962 American drama film directed by Robert Mulligan. The screenplay by Horton Foote was based on the 1960 Pulitzer Prize-winning novel of the same name by Harper Lee. ...more

2
162 54
Ranker Video
Leonardo DiCaprio, Amy Adams, Jennifer Garner
Catch Me If You Can is a 2002 American biographical crime drama film based on the life of Frank Abagnale, who, before his 19th birthday, successfully performed cons worth millions of dollars by ...more

3
139 44
Ranker Video
Paul Newman, Robert Redford, Robert Shaw
The Sting is a 1973 American caper film set in September 1936, involving a complicated plot by two professional grifters to con a mob boss. The film was directed by George Roy Hill, who had ...more

4
169 65
Ranker Video
Leonardo DiCaprio, Kerry Washington, Samuel L. Jackson
Django Unchained is a 2012 American revisionist Western film directed by Quentin Tarantino. With the help of a German bounty hunter (Christoph Waltz), a freed slave (Jamie Foxx) sets out to ...more

5
144 41
Ranker Video
Val Kilmer, Kurt Russell, Charlton Heston
Tombstone is a 1993 American western film directed by George P. Cosmatos, written by Kevin Jarre and starring Kurt Russell and Val Kilmer, with Sam Elliott, Bill Paxton, Powers Boothe, Michael ...more

6
128 52
Ranker Video
Rachel McAdams, Robert Downey Jr., Jude Law
Sherlock Holmes is a 2009 British–American action mystery film based on the character of the same name created by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. The film was directed by Guy Ritchie. In the film, ...more

7
88 57
Ranker Video
Brad Pitt, Cate Blanchett, Elle Fanning
The Curious Case of Benjamin Button is a 2008 American romantic fantasy drama film directed by David Fincher. The storyline by Eric Roth and Robin Swicord is loosely based on the 1922 short ...more

8
81 31
Ranker Video
Alan Napier, Sebastian Cabot, Norman Alden
The Sword in the Stone is a 1963 American animated musical fantasy comedy film produced by Walt Disney and released to theaters on December 25, 1963 by Buena Vista Distribution. The 18th film in ...more

9
88 50
Ranker Video
Jack Nicholson, Helen Hunt, Julie Benz
As Good as It Gets is a 1997 American romantic comedy film directed by James L. Brooks and produced by Laura Ziskin. It stars Jack Nicholson as a misanthropic, homophobic, racist, ...more

10
91 57
Ranker Video
Julianne Moore, Clive Owen, Michael Caine
Children of Men is a 2006 science fiction thriller film directed and co-written by Alfonso Cuarón. The screenplay, based on P. D. James's 1992 novel of the same name, was credited to five ...more

11
85 47
Ranker Video
Anne Hathaway, Amanda Seyfried, Hugh Jackman
Les Misérables is a 2012 musical drama film directed by Tom Hooper, based on the 1862 French novel of the same name by Victor Hugo, which also inspired a 1980 concept album and 1985 ...more

12
62 43
Ranker Video
Jack Nicholson, Morgan Freeman, Sean Hayes
The Bucket List is a 2007 American comedy-drama film directed by Rob Reiner, produced by Reiner, Alan Greisman, Craig Zadan and Neil Meron, written by Justin Zackham, and starring Jack Nicholson ...more

13
74 43
Ranker Video
Ann-Margret, Daryl Hannah, Jack Lemmon
Grumpy Old Men is a 1993 American romantic comedy film starring Jack Lemmon, Walter Matthau and Ann-Margret, with Burgess Meredith, Daryl Hannah, Kevin Pollak, Ossie Davis and Buck Henry. ...more

14
61 53
Ranker Video
Tom Urie, Raymond Mearns, Paul Bandey
The Illusionist is a 2010 French-Scottish animated comedy-drama film directed by Sylvain Chomet. The film is based on an unproduced script written by French mime, director and actor Jacques Tati ...more

15
56 55
Ranker Video
Gwyneth Paltrow, Cate Blanchett, Matt Damon
The Talented Mr. Ripley is a 1999 American psychological thriller written for the screen and directed by Anthony Minghella. An adaptation of the 1955 Patricia Highsmith novel of the same name, ...more

16
63 39
Ranker Video
Kate Beckinsale, Leonardo DiCaprio, Gwen Stefani
The Aviator is a 2004 American biographical drama film directed by Martin Scorsese, written by John Logan and produced by Michael Mann, Sandy Climan, Graham King, and Charles Evans, Jr.. It ...more

17
64 51
Ranker Video
George Clooney, John Travolta, Sean Penn
The Thin Red Line is a 1998 American ensemble epic film written and directed by Terrence Malick. Based on the novel by James Jones, it tells a fictionalized version of the Battle of Mount ...more

18
62 51
Ranker Video
Tom Cruise, Julianne Moore, Philip Seymour Hoffman
Magnolia is a 1999 American drama film written, produced, and directed by Paul Thomas Anderson and starring Jeremy Blackman, Tom Cruise, Philip Baker Hall, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Ricky Jay, ...more

19
42 18
Ranker Video
Rolling Stone Lists added Leonardo DiCaprio, Matthew McConaughey, Margot Robbie
The Wolf of Wall Street is a 2013 American biographical black comedy film directed by Martin Scorsese. The screenplay by Terence Winter is adapted from the eponymous memoir by Jordan Belfort and ...more

20
42 19
Ranker Video
Logan2011 added Sigourney Weaver, Alan Rickman, Tim Allen
Galaxy Quest is a 1999 American science fiction action comedy film directed by Dean Parisot and written by David Howard and Robert Gordon. The film follows the adventures of a troupe of actors ...more

21
38 56
Ranker Video
Jack Nicholson, Danny DeVito, Tim Burton
Hoffa is a 1992 French-American biographical film directed by Danny DeVito and written by David Mamet, based on the life of Teamsters Union leader Jimmy Hoffa. Jack Nicholson plays Hoffa, and ...more

22
43 56
Ranker Video
Kevin Bacon, Sam Rockwell, Michael Sheen
Frost/Nixon is a 2008 British-American historical drama film based on the 2006 play of the same name by Peter Morgan, who also adapted the screenplay. The film tells the story behind the ...more

23
20 15
Marley & Me is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Movies Released Christmas Day
Owen Wilson, Jennifer Aniston, Eric Dane
Marley & Me is a 2008 American comedy-drama film directed by David Frankel, based on the memoir by John Grogan. Newlyweds John (Owen Wilson) and Jenny Grogan (Jennifer Aniston) learn ...more

24
26 26
Ranker Video
Logan2011 added Robert De Niro, Samuel L. Jackson, Quentin Tarantino
Jackie Brown is a 1997 drama film written and directed by Quentin Tarantino. It is an adaptation of Elmore Leonard's 1992 novel Rum Punch, the first adaptation from Tarantino, and stars Pam ...more

25
40 68
Ranker Video
Robin Williams, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Monica Potter
Patch Adams is a 1998 semi-biographical comedy-drama film starring Robin Williams, Monica Potter, Philip Seymour Hoffman and Bob Gunton. Directed by Tom Shadyac, it is based on the life story of ...more