How Christmas Are You?

This post has been written by Lee Peckover

How Christmas Are You? (and which of Santa’s lists will you be on?)

Season's greetings one and all!

2020 might have been a chaotic and unpredictable year for most areas of life but Christmas films are still there for us all, ready to warm the hearts of even the Scroogiest Grinch in Whoville.

Fortunately, while so much has changed this year, not a single good Christmas film has been released, which means this list from last year remains definitive, and the point scoring quiz that accompanies it remains as factual as ever.

So here it is, the Ultimate Christmas Movie Test. Time to find out how you rank in terms of your festive merriment and cheer.

Are you more Grinch or more Elf? More Scrooge when he’s a horrible old geezer or more Scrooge when he eventually comes good? There’s only one way to find out, and it is, of course, by scoring yourself through this definitive list of the greatest Christmas films of all time…

Honorary Mentions, score 1 point for each you have seen:

Jingle All the Way (1996) – Gets a panning from the critics but it’s actually quite funny

The Santa Clause (1994) – An undemanding holiday fable

Home Alone 2: Lost in New York (1992) – This might be top ten worthy if the original didn’t exist

A Christmas Carol (1951) – One of the greatest stories ever told, but the book is better.

 Love Actually (2003) – This can’t be in the top 10 because you can’t treat Emma Thompson like that.

Trading Places (1983) – An excellent social satire, but setting it any time of year would still work.

Die Hard (1988) – Misses out on the top 10 to avoid controversy – while many argue it is a Christmas movie (it’s always included in Sky’s Christmas selection), Bruce Willis says it is not and you don’t want to start an argument with John McClane.


Top 10 (definitive)

  1. How The Grinch Stole Christmas (1967 or 2000)



The 1967 animation is an absolute classic. The Jim Carrey starring version is saved by both his performance and the cuteness of his dog. We’ve included both here but you can have the points for either.

Seen it: 2 points

Image: Universal Pictures


  1. Meet me in St. Louis (1944)

A sweet musical that has all the right heart but that just isn’t Christmassy enough to rank higher than 9th here.

Seen it: 2 points

Watched it with your class as well: 1 bonus point


  1. Home Alone (1990)




From the Wet Bandits to Fuller needing to go easy on the Pepsi, this film has generated its fair share of holiday laughs and quote worthy lines.

Seen it: 3 points

Image: 20th Century Fox


  1. Nightmare Before Christmas (1993)

Halloween meets Christmas in this insanely great stop motion animation from Tim Burton with memorable songs and a morbid fairy-tale plot.

Seen it: 3 points


  1. The Muppet Christmas Carol (1992)



‘The greatest story of all time is ‘A Christmas Carol’, and there is only one way to make that better, and that is ‘The Muppet Christmas Carol’’ – Ricky Gervais.

Seen it: 3 points

Watched it with your class as well: 1 bonus point

Image: Buena Vista Pictures
  1. The Shop Around the Corner (1940)

A Christmas rom-com that has inspired innumerable imitations without ever being bettered in that genre.

Seen it: 3 points

Watched it with your class as well: 2 bonus points


  1. Holiday Inn (1942)

The film that brought ‘White Christmas’ into the world is a classic musical in its own right. Brilliantly acted and charmingly simple.

Seen it: 5 points

Watched it with your class as well: 2 bonus points


  1. Elf (2003)



A genuinely fun Christmas film. Light-hearted, fast-paced and filled to the brim with Yuletide cheer, Elf favours laughs and silliness over delivering too poignant a message.

Seen it: 5 points

Watch it every year: 3 bonus points

Image: New Line Cinema


  1. Miracle on 34th Street (1947)

Sweet but never sickly, this is the original and best version of this film. I get something in my eyes at the end of this film every single year.

Seen it: 5 points

Watched it with your class as well: 3 bonus points

Watch it every year: 3 bonus points


  1. It’s a Wonderful Life (1946)


The critics consensus on review site Rotten Tomatoes calls it ‘The holiday classic to define all holiday classics’. It is just that. The greatest Christmas film of all time.

Seen it: 5 points

Watched it with your class as well: 5 bonus points

Watch it every year: 7 bonus points

Image: RKO Radio Pictures

Final scores time!

1-5 points: You are Scrooge before the ghosts visit. Enjoy your lump of coal this year.

6-15 points: There’s a little bit of Christmas to you, but it probably isn’t your favourite time of year. You might make the nice list, there is still time to watch some more Christmas films after all.

16-50 points: You are on the Nice List for certain. You might even be near the top.

50-70 points: No need to check the list twice. Your name’s at the top. You are the human embodiment of Christmas and may even have Elf level wrapping skills.

71+ points: That’s not possible. Liars go on the naughty list.


Lee Peckover is head of research and development at Classroom Secrets. Alongside his work at Classroom Secrets. Lee has an MA in creative writing, a BA in English Literature and a Post-Graduate Certificate in Early Years and Primary Education (Level 7). He lives in Bradford with his wife Zoe and his seizure assistance dog Albie.