Book & Film Globe’s Holiday Streaming Guide

So Many Holiday Movies

With the bevy of streaming services at your disposal these days, it’s hard to keep track of what’s available and what’s not. Let this article be your guide to some of the best holiday entertainment currently streaming on Netflix, Hulu, Disney+, Amazon Prime, HBO Now, Shudder and the Criterion Channel. As you can see, Netflix and Disney+ are dominating the holiday streaming game, but there’s something for everyone here. Happy holiday binging!

Netflix

Yule Log, the heartwarming holiday classic, on Netflix

Netflix is looking to beat Hallmark at its own game by releasing a ton of original Christmas content like The Knight Before Christmas (a knight is transported to present day and woos Vanessa Hudgens) and The Christmas Prince film series (a journalist marries a prince). While Netflix doesn’t have a lot of other Christmas content besides its originals, there’s an entire genre of Netflix Holiday Specials on its site now.

Here’s a brief rundown of what you can find on Netflix:

  • Klaus
  • Christmas with the Kranks
  • Merry Happy Whatever
  • Nailed It!: Holiday edition
  • Great British Baking Show: Holiday edition
  • Let it Snow
  • The Christmas Prince film series
  • Fireplace yule log screensaver
  • How the Grinch Stole Christmas (the live-action Jim Carrey version)
  • The Grinch (the computer-animated Benedict Cumberbatch version)
  • The Knight Before Christmas
  • The Christmas Chronicles
  • El Camino Christmas
  • Pottersville
  • Unaccompanied Minors
  • Pee Wee’s Playhouse Christmas Special
  • White Christmas
  • A Very Murray Christmas
  • Bojack Horseman’s Christmas Special

Hulu

Hulu features a lot of TV specials and Christmas episodes of your favorite shows. It also features some Hallmark-adjacent films like Christmas Belle and The Christmas Calendar. It also has the recent ABC Hallmark-esque Same Time, Next Christmas. If those don’t sound like what you want to watch, here are some other Hulu offerings:

  • Daddy’s Home 2
  • Rare Exports
  • A lot of scenics (think Netflix’s Yule log, but with scenes of puppies or kittens)
  • Krampus Unleashed
  • Anna and the Apocalypse
  • A Nasty Piece of Work (part of Hulu’s Into the Dark holiday movie series)

Disney+

If you’re looking for family fa la la la la fare, look no further. Disney and 20th Century Fox’s holiday catalog rivals the amount of holiday originals on Netflix, and chances are it probably has what your kid wants to watch anyway. The newest addition here is Noelle, a Christmas film that probably would have gone straight to DVD years ago but is now being used to launch a streaming service. At least it features Bill Hader as a reluctant Santa.

Here’s what you can find on Disney+:

  • Noelle
  • The Home Alone series (1, 2 and 3)
  • The Santa Clause series (1, 2 and 3)
  • The Nightmare Before Christmas
  • Mickey’s Christmas Carol
  • Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmas
  • Mickey’s Twice Upon a Christmas
  • The Muppet Christmas Carol
  • I’ll be Home for Christmas
  • Beauty and the Beast: The Enchanted Christmas
  • One Magic Christmas
  • ‘Twas the Night
  • Miracle on 34th Street (the 1947 original version; sorry, Richard Attenborough fans)
  • The Ultimate Christmas Present
  • One Magic Christmas
  • The Christmas Star
  • Three Days
  • Full-Court Miracle (a rare Hanukkah movie!)
  • 12 Dates of Christmas
  • Richie Rich’s Christmas Wish

Amazon Prime

A lot of previous entries on this list can also be found on Amazon Prime, and if you’re willing to shell out some money for a rental, you can probably find whatever holiday movies your heart desires (including some old Hallmark movies and The Family Stone, The Holiday, Love Actually and others). But if you just want what’s included with a Prime subscription, here are your best bets:

  • Daddy’s Home 2
  • Anna and the Apocalypse
  • It’s a Wonderful Life
  • Bad Santa
  • A Merry Friggin’ Christmas

HBO Now

Surprisingly, HBO Now has some pretty slim pickings when it comes to holiday fare. I guess the main selling point here is that it’s the only streaming service covered in this article to offer Love Actually as a part of the subscription. Here’s what else to expect:

  • Jingle All the Way
  • Popper’s Penguins
  • Yes Virginia, There is a Santa Claus
  • The Ref

Shudder

Christmas Evil on Shudder

Shudder is the way to go if you want a little haunts to go with your holiday entertainment. After all, one of the most adapted Christmas tales is a ghost story. Scare yourself with these Shudder offerings:

  • Deadly Games
  • Silent Night, Deadly Night Part 2
  • Black Christmas (1974 original)
  • Christmas Evil
  • A Christmas Horror Story
  • Christmas Presence

 Criterion Channel

Are you tired of regular holiday fare and looking for something a little more artsy? Perhaps a foreign film? The Criterion Channel has you covered:

  • A Christmas Tale
  • Blue Christmas series
  • Bad Night for the Blues
  • Placido
  • Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence

If you don’t see all of these, and I hope you don’t, they will be waiting for you next Christmas as well. Along with, probably, a sequel to The Knight Before Christmas.

Jake Harris

Jake Harris is a Texas-based journalist whose writing about pop culture and entertainment has appeared in the Austin American-Statesman, the Chattanooga Times Free Press, the Nashville Scene and more. You can find more of his writings at jakeharrisbog.com or through his pop culture newsletter, Jacob's Letter.

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