'Home Alone,' 'A Christmas Story,' 'Wizard of Oz': Favorite Christmas movies to enjoy this holiday
Zap2it has selected a sampling of some of the home-screen gifts being presented in the coming days.
"The Wizard of Oz" (Sunday, Dec. 22, TNT): It had a 3-D and IMAX retrofitting recently, but there's something comforting about going "Over the Rainbow" with the Judy Garland-starring 1939 classic at home.
"Home Alone" (Sunday, AMC): Young Kevin ( Macaulay Culkin) makes things tough for thieves ( Joe Pesci, Daniel Stern) who invade his house in this 1990 family favorite.
"The Santa Clause" (Sunday, ABC Family): Tim Allen is enlisted as the new Kriss Kringle in this 1994 Disney comedy that launched a franchise.
"Call Me Claus" (Sunday, Lifetime): The channel's festival of Christmas movies includes this 2001 comedy-fantasy with Whoopi Goldberg as a stand-in for ... guess who.
"The Sound of Music" (Sunday, ABC): Carrie Underwood did a televised live staging recently, but this Oscar-winning 1965 screen version of the Rodgers & Hammerstein musical offers Julie Andrews' take on the character Maria that is beloved by several generations.
"Hollywood Game Night" (Monday, Dec. 23, NBC): Host Jane Lynch returns with a special holiday edition of the contest, with Ray Romano, Rachel Bilson ("Hart of Dixie"), and spouses Andy Roddick and Brooklyn Decker among the celebrity players.
"White Christmas" (Monday, AMC): Bing Crosby and Danny Kaye make a delightful team in the 1954 movie classic infused with Irving Berlin songs.
"Shrek the Halls" (Monday, ABC): It's holiday time for the ogre (voiced again by Mike Myers), Princess Fiona ( Cameron Diaz), Donkey ( Eddie Murphy) and their friends in this repeat of an animated special.
"The Great Christmas Light Fight" (Monday, ABC): Who's decorated their house best this year? The winner - as far as this limited series goes - is determined in the finale.
"The iHeartradio Jingle Ball 2013" (Monday, The CW): Acts for the telecast include Pitbull, Enrique Iglesias, Fall Out Boy, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, Robin Thicke, Selena Gomez, Fifth Harmony, Ariana Grande, Jason Derulo, Austin Mahone, Miley Cyrus and more.
"Christmas in Norway With the St. Olaf Choir" (Monday, PBS; check local listings): Traditional favorites are rendered a cappella, along with Norwegian hymns, by the choir in tandem with the female choir Nidaros Jentekor.
"November Christmas" (Monday, Hallmark Channel): Have tissues handy for this genuinely moving 2010 drama starring Sam Elliott as a farmer who helps an ill child ( Emily Alyn Lind) and her parents.
"The Polar Express" (Monday, ABC Family): Thanks to motion-capture animation, Tom Hanks plays several roles in director Robert Zemeckis' genuinely magical 2004 version of the Chris Van Allsburg book.
"A Christmas Carol" (Tuesday, Dec. 24, Turner Classic Movies): Reginald Owen makes one of the screen's very best Scrooges in this 1938 rendering of the Charles Dickens classic.
"It's a Wonderful Life" (Tuesday, NBC): Another holiday movie tradition, director Frank Capra's 1946 classic stars James Stewart as seemingly hapless George Bailey, whose plight helps angel Clarence ( Henry Travers) earn his wings.
"A Christmas Story" (Tuesday, TBS): What would Christmas be without the annual 24-hour marathon of Ralphie ( Peter Billingsley) dreaming of getting a Red Ryder BB gun? Darren McGavin and Melinda Dillon play his parents in the richly nostalgic, Jean Shepherd-inspired 1983 movie.
"Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas" (Tuesday, ABC): Whether you prefer your Grinch animated or live action, you can have either or both this Christmas Eve. The cartoon classic narrated by Boris Karloff is followed by the Ron Howard-directed 2000 movie starring Jim Carrey.
"Christmas With the Mormon Tabernacle Choir Featuring Alfie Boe and Tom Brokaw" (Tuesday, PBS; check local listings): Veteran newsman Brokaw hosts as singer Boe performs with the choir in an encore of a program recorded in Salt Lake City.
"Good Luck Charlie, It's Christmas!" (Tuesday, Disney Channel): This 2011 movie spinoff of the series finds Teddy and Amy ( Bridgit Mendler, Leigh-Allyn Baker) trying to reunite with the rest of their family.
"Dads" (Tuesday, FOX): The Christmas episode of this relatively new sitcom gets a Christmas Eve repeat, as does that of fellow freshman "Brooklyn Nine-Nine" ... along with holiday-themed encores of "New Girl" and "The Mindy Project."
"Disney Parks Christmas Day Parade" (Wednesday, Dec. 25, ABC): Music and merriment fill the tourist destinations again, as Mickey Mouse and company offer their yuletide best.
"Kelly Clarkson's Cautionary Christmas Music Tale" (Wednesday, NBC): The first "American Idol" welcomes Blake Shelton, Robin Williams, Whoopi Goldberg and other guests in a repeat of her special inspired by "A Christmas Carol."
"Michael Buble's 3rd Annual Christmas Special" (Wednesday, NBC): Yes, it's just what the title says as singer Buble marks the occasion with guests Mariah Carey, Mary J. Blige and Cookie Monster (who Buble reports "shared his cookies with all of us") in this encore of a show taped in Buble's hometown of Vancouver.