Rating and Ranking Popular Holiday Classics



Rebekah Flores, Publicist

The holidays are just around the corner. People are starting to decorate their houses, Christmas trees are lighting up the town, and the holiday spirit is in the air. Of course, what would the holidays be without the classic holiday movies and Christmas songs? Of course, choosing the best out of all of the films and songs is a difficult choice to have to make, yet here, I’ll try to make that choice as I rate and rank popular holiday classics in music and movies!*

*Disclaimer: I haven’t seen every holiday film nor heard every holiday song in existence, I apologize if I left out your favorite movie/song.

Now, on to the movies!

The Nightmare Before Christmas

I watched this movie for the first time while I was working on this article, and while I definitely understand the hype of the movie, there are some complaints I have too. I feel like Oogie Boogie should’ve had a slightly bigger role in the film than he did and I wish the movie established a little more of a connection between Jack Skellington and Sally, as the ending where they fell in love felt out of place to me. The movie was still enjoyable overall and aesthetically pleasing to watch.

Score: 8.5/10

How The Grinch Stole Christmas

I’ve only seen the live-action version, so I can’t speak for the rest, however, the live-action version is a beautiful take on the story. I like how the movie chooses to give the audience an explanation as to why the Grinch is the way he is, rather than leaving it to “just because”.

Score: 8.5/10

A Charlie Brown Christmas

A classic film this is, though I sort of prefer I Want A Dog For Christmas, Charlie Brown. Nonetheless, A Charlie Brown Christmas is practically Christmas tradition and I do like its message that the meaning of Christmas comes from the heart, not from what you buy with money.

Score: 8/10


It wasn’t until I was 14 that I watched this movie for the first time, but once I did, I immediately loved it. I loved its humor, mostly, and the storyline was actually a fun one to follow. Who knew that the idea of a human who was raised as an elf going back into human society to find his father could be such a chaotic, fun ride?

Score: 10/10

Home Alone

This one was an interesting movie that, if given the chance, I would definitely re-watch over and over. The comedy in this movie is really good, although the sequels that follow this movie (excluding Home Alone 2) weren’t as great.

Score: 9/10

Home Alone 2

Believe it or not, I actually remember the second one more vividly than the first, most likely because I’ve watched that one more often. The same charm from the first movie is visibly seen here, as is the humor. I also like the idea of a new setting, rather than just him being stuck at home again.

Score: 9.5/10

Rise of the Guardians

I know technically, this is probably an Easter film, but multiple websites have considered this movie as a Christmas film. Nonetheless, the film is one of my favorite animated films to this day. The action was on point, the dialogue was great, and the movie holds sentimental value as the film I saw when I turned nine.

Score: 10/10

Overall, this was a hard choice to make, considering the list of top-tier Christmas movies, but my final ranking would have to be:

7. A Charlie Brown Christmas

6. How The Grinch Stole Christmas

5. The Nightmare Before Christmas

4. Home Alone

3. Home Alone 2

2/1. Elf

1/2. Rise Of The Guardians

Moving forward to music!

All I Want For Christmas Is You

One of the most played songs at Christmas; never has there been a holiday season where I haven’t heard this song. While slightly overplayed to me, the song is iconic for the season and it’s a catchy song overall.

Score: 7/10

12 Days Of Christmas

Ah yes, the song that’s about a person who receives multiple gifts from their lover on the 12 days of Christmas. I never quite understood the song in itself nor the meaning of half of the gifts (what are “ten lords a leapin'” anyways?), but the music has a nice rhythm, so I’ll give it that.

Score: 6.5/10

Frosty The Snowman

Who doesn’t love Frosty the magical snowman? It’s a lovely song that, while it does get tiring sometimes, is a cute little Christmas song for all ages!

Score: 7.5/10

Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer

The ninth reindeer of Santa’s sleigh team, who bravely lit the way for Santa one foggy Christmas Eve! Like Frosty, Rudolph can get a bit tiring at times, however, the tune is catchy and cute for all ages!

Score: 8/10

Let It Snow

I honestly don’t entirely know how to feel about this one. The song is catchy enough and I like the lyrics, however, it doesn’t really stand out to me too much. Still a lovely tune, though.

Score: 6/10

It’s Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas

It sure is beginning to look a lot like Christmas with this song! When I first heard this song, I did NOT like it at all, but over the years I have grown accustomed to it. It’s a nice song, nice lyrics, overall a nice song to listen to while baking Christmas cookies or decorating the tree.

Score: 9/10

That’s Christmas To Me

This tune is a calmer song describing the feeling of Christmas to them. This song is a beautiful song that, in my opinion, perfectly captures the heart of Christmas and the cheer that it brings.

Score: 10/10

Mary, Did You Know?

Plot twist: Yes, Mary knew. Nonetheless, the song itself is a wonderfully beautiful Christmas tune, especially the version I have linked above.

Score: 10/10

Jingle Bells

Ah, the classic Jingle Bells. A lovely sleighing song that almost everyone will recognize. It’s a nice tune in itself, it’s just not my personal favorite.

Score: 7/10

Jingle Bell Rock

The first time I listened to this as a kid, I thought this and Jingle Bells were going to be the same. I was very wrong. Despite my initial confusion, I’d prefer this to original Jingle Bells any day.

Score: 8.5/10

Sleigh Ride

This song is a wonderful and beautiful song, but some adaptations are better than others. The one linked above as well as this one do a pretty solid job with the song, while this one doesn’t exactly fit the song in my personal opinion.

Score: 8.5/10

Carol Of The Bells

Carol of the Bells is one of my all-time favorite songs for Christmas, and the version listed above is the main reason as to why. The tune is very pleasing to the ears, though I’m not exactly sure of how.

Score: 9.5/10

Feliz Navidad

Feliz Navidad is a lovely Christmas tune that holds a nostalgic value of childhood for me. The music is cheerful and the lyrics give off a positive message, which is something we could use especially in these times.

Score: 9/10

We Wish You A Merry Christmas

Though the formatting is repetitive, it is a holiday classic, though probably not my favorite one. The tune is nice enough, though.

Score: 5/10

Where Are You Christmas?

This was the first Christmas song that genuinely made me cry, especially when I first heard it when I was twelve. Whether it’s because the beginning of the song made me sad or nostalgic, I’m not entirely sure.

Score: 10/10

This was another tough decision to make, but overall, my ranking would have to be:

15. We Wish You A Merry Christmas

14. Let It Snow

13. 12 Days Of Christmas

12. Jingle Bells

11. All I Want For Christmas Is You

10. Frosty The Snowman

9. Rudolph The Red Nose Reindeer

8. Jingle Bell Rock

7. Sleigh Ride

6. Feliz Navidad

5. It’s Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas

4. Carol Of The Bells

3. That’s Christmas To Me

2. Mary, Did You Know?

1. Where Are You, Christmas?

This concludes my rating and ranking of classic holiday movies and music, have a happy holiday season!