When it's bleak outside, it's time to stay indoors with mushy, feel-good Christmas movies

Whether you are a grouch who doesn’t care for all the hugging, air-kissing and present-exchanging with family during the holidays, or you don’t mind putting up with people as long as the food is good, or you’re somewhere in between, you must admit that the original Die Hard is the best movie of this season!

No other movie will make you cheer the way we all do when Hans Gruber plunges to his death from Nakatomi Plaza. It’s Christmas the moment we say, ‘Yippeekai yay!’

Wait, what? This movie is all about terrorists who storm a Corporate Christmas party… Is it not? How many times have you managed to wiggle out of the office Secret Santa? Or wanted to but could not tell that person from Accounts that his loud chewing makes you want to scream?

That said, watch Die Hard on Disney Plus Hotstar. As long as Die Hard gets the best Christmas movie crown, you may watch all these at your own leisure and rank them! I loved them all and they turned me so mushy you could call me Sigh-ra-bano…

Christmas movies are suddenly showing up on Netflix and every other OTT platform. And they should too. Because the season makes us a kinder lot. And you’re getting nostalgic about Brooke Shields! She’s the girl from your teenage fantasies (Blue Lagoon!) and in this film, she’s older but still so delish! A Castle For Christmas has an interesting premise because it goes beyond the ‘must be romance’ dictat. Yes, there is a romance, but she’s rich enough to buy a castle and though he’s a Duke, he needs to sell the castle because he cannot afford to be landlord any more. That said, the film will make you want to snuggle with someone afterwards. I rate it as a ‘three sighs’ film.

Last Christmas as the name suggests is a lovely little film that is based on the Wham! Song. And Emilia Clark who stars in the film actually sings the song in the film! It’s a wonderful change of heart film that teaches a selfish elf the value of taking the time and actually looking at how good people around us are. George Michael has written many wonderful songs, but this one is more than just heartbreak. It offers us hope.

Now I might watch Arcane on Netflix for the pleasure of watching magic come alive but for Christmas gadgetry, try watching Jingle Jangle which just dropped on Netflix. It stars Forrest Whitaker and the magic is in the fabulous machinery, and this musical journey of hope is just what we all need. The music of Ricky Martin, PhilipLawrence and John Legend will keep you involved in the sorcery of the toy shop.

But what do you do when your family has designs on your single status? You take inspiration from Single All The Way. It’s a lovely little movie with everyone pitching in ideas on how to change that status. The problem of well-intentioned families is universal, and the fun multiplies when the hero of the film happens to be gay. I loved the film and I know you will too.

Emma Roberts has a family that wants her to get married as soon as possible and the easiest way to deflect their horrid date recommendations is to find a holidate: someone who is nice and will be nice to the family as well. This is such a fun film. Worth all the popcorn you will eat.

Speaking of a date during the holidays, what if you did what Cameron Diaz and Kate Winslet do, you will begin to believe in love and Christmas wishes and ‘meet cutes’. This film is so wonderful and romantic and will turn your bleak November fog filled heart into chocolate yule logs and cookies and pudding and your tummy will be filled with Christmas plum cake from Kerala. Of course you will fall in love with Eli Wallach despite the presence of Jack Black and Jude Law. This will always remain a five sigh movie.

A Boy Called Christmas just dropped on Netflix and with it brought me tears and fears of losing loved ones and even though the king has asked able men and women from far corners of the kingdom to bring back hope which is hidden away in Elfhelm (and Elfhelm cannot be seen unless you believe in magic)… This little boy called Nikolas goes in search of his father who may be lost forever and brings back joy to the kingdom…

I loved the smart mouthed mouse that accompanies Nikolas on his journey. But did not expect the Indian looking Kip and his parents! It’s a good watch.

I watched all kinds of Christmas movies which have castles and princes who fall in love with poor girls with big hearts. I watched ordinary men discover that they are Santa Claus, and I’ve watched movies in the series Christmas Chronicles that star Goldie Hawn and Kurt Russell save Christmas because they are Mrs Claus and Santa… I even watched A California Christmas which is an awful Mills & Boon romance but a cute story about grapes and wine making. So what is the point I’m making now? The point is, I watched Love Hard on Netflix which stars the lad from Crazy Rich Asians. No, not the hero, but the cousin… And although the premise is very modern – about a guy who catfishes a girl because ‘no girl is going to want to even give him a second glance’ – it was tough for me to adjust because he’s not what you can fit into a standard definition of a ‘perfect’ romantic hero. Plus it was tough to accept a guy who wants to make candles for a living as the ‘hero’ of a romance.

If you haven’t watched Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas, then you need to see it right now. It’s magnificent and no animation film comes close to the weird and wonderful version of the holiday than this film. It is listed on Disney Plus Hotstar but doesn’t really play. So try and score a DVD of the film as a Christmas present, and turn to Netflix and watch the awars winning Klaus.

As tradition suggests, you must watch A Wonderful Life or at least The Miracle on 34th Street (it plays on Disney Plus Hotstar. Otherwise it’s not Christmas. This film made in 1994 has been spreading cheer and hope over the years. It’s a courtroom drama that is as magical as the feeling you get when you are with the people you love.

I’m a sucker for the spirit of Christmas and the fairy lights and the love. I find myself watching The Midnight Mass more often than I would watch Christmas romances, but sometimes, just sometimes, when the year is coming to an end (and hopefully all the awful things that happened to you end as well), when the crystal ball falls down in Times Square and fireworks light up different parts of the skies you will be happy you have in and watched movies about hope and happiness and love…

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