As Christmas approaches we all remember the fun of sitting back and enjoying a Christmas classic such as Home Alone or Elf. In more recent times the appetite for Christmas films is growing but there is a feeling that the new movies don’t live up to the classic Christmas films.

They don’t make them like they used to

‘They don’t make them like they used to’ – we’ve all probably been guilty of saying this at some point, and recent ratings and reviews of the latest Christmas movies would confirm this. But, regardless of the reviews of these recent Christmas movies, it seems they are still able to bring in big money at the box office. 

Take for instance the recently released ‘Last Christmas’ starring Emilia Clarke. The movie was panned by critics but still managed to make almost $70m in it’s first month worldwide. The animated movie The Grinch 2018 also follows the same trend. It received very low ratings on Rotten Tomatoes and still has gone on to become the second most successful Christmas movie of all time behind Home alone.

What the numbers show

Betway Sports has put together a fun ‘Christmas at the Movies’ infographic, analysing the biggest and best Christmas movies.

What is interesting is of the top ten Christmas films by profit, only two films were released after 2004 and none of the top ten rated Christmas movies on IMDB were released after 2004. The odds are we are going to be waiting a while before we get the next Christmas blockbuster.

Are streaming services behind these new Christmas films?

With the rise in popularity of streaming services such as Amazon and Netflix we are seeing that they can afford to release more and more mid-budget Christmas films because they are getting a good return on their investment regardless of the ratings. 

Whilst Hollywood seems to have moved on from the big budget Christmas films, it has left an opening for services such as Netflix to fill the void having released seven Christmas films in November and December. 

It may seem strange releasing all these films that aren’t getting the reviews you would expect, but the returns these films make are enabling companies like Netflix to spend big on films like “The Irishman”. The Irishman was directed by Martin Scorsese and staring such megastars as Robert DeNiro and Al Pacino. The film garnered a Rotten Tomatoes score of 96% and is in line to win best picture at the Oscars.

A Christmas Classic for us all

Of all the Christmas movies, the one that tops the list is Home Alone, released in 1990. This film appeals to all ages and is a Christmas classic which really shows the spirit of Christmas. Bringing together a great cast including Macaulay Culkin as the boy left behind in the family home at Christmas, and Joe Pesci as the determined burglar. This movie was so successful, two years later in 1992 they made a sequel; Home Alone 2: Lost in New York. The sequel is also in the top ten most profitable Christmas movies of all time. 

The original is almost 20-years-old and it is rumoured that Disney is planning a reboot of Home Alone. Of course, this is receiving a mixed reception with some describing it as sacrilege, which shows the feeling people still hold for the original.


As we get closer to Christmas, one thing is clear, and that is that the demand for Christmas movies hasn’t diminished even if the big budget Hollywood blockbuster has. The great news is which ever is your favorite Christmas movie there is always a way to watch it, whether it’s on TV or a streaming service.



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