Lessons and Quotes from the Most Watched Christmas Movies

Life Lessons from the Classics


This time of year, many people are busy with the holidays.

Our traditions are wrapped in our family history, our religion, our culture. No matter your background or practice, you likely will find yourself watching at least one classic Christmas movie.

Most years I try to resist. Do I really need to watch It’s A Wonderful Life again? And then somehow, I find myself sitting down with my family as it starts, swept into the well-known plot from many years ago. I wish it stopped there, but just the other evening I watched Frosty the Snowman.

What is it about these classics that pull us in?

Perhaps because it will make me feel less guilty, I started thinking about the lessons these movies teach. Each offers more than entertainment. There are many life lessons that are woven into each one—too many to list.

Here are a few lessons from some of the movies I’ve seen far too many times to admit:



Love cannot be purchased in a store (or even online).

Don’t give up on anyone because everyone can change.


“No one should be alone on Christmas.” -Cindy Lou Who


“It came without ribbons, it came without tags. It came without packages, boxes, or bags.” -Grinch




Pure joy will win over even the most resistant.

Don’t let anyone or anything stop you from being yourself.


“Son of a nutcracker.” -Buddy the Elf


“I love you. I love you. I LOVE YOU!” -Buddy the Elf


“We elves stick to the four main food groups: candy, candy canes, candy corns, and syrup.” -Buddy the Elf



The Santa Clause

Accidents, mistakes, and failures may be the start of something awesome.

Being is often more important than doing.


“Thanks, but I’m seeing someone in wrapping.” -Judy the Elf


“I think that if we’re going to destroy our son’s illusions, I should be a part of it.” -Scott as Santa



Miracle on 34th Street

All positive achievements start with belief.

Always put people ahead of profit.


“Faith is believing in things when common sense tells you not to.” -Doris Walker



Everyone has something special to offer the world.

What you think is a negative may be your greatest positive.


“What’s the matter? Haven’t you ever seen a talking snowman before?” -Sam the Snowman


“Peppermint! What I’ve been searching for all my life!” -Yukon Cornelius



It’s A Wonderful Life

You likely will never know the full extent of your impact.

A great community supports one another.


“Remember no man is a failure who has friends.” -Clarence


“Strange, isn’t it? Each man’s life touches so many other lives. When he isn’t around he leaves an awful hole, doesn’t he?” -Clarence


Christmas Vacation

Persistence is power (some sequels can actually be good, so don’t give up!)

Pursue your dreams.


“This isn’t charity; it’s family!” -Clark Griswold


“I’m sorry, this is our family’s first kidnapping.” -Ellen Griswold



Frosty the Snowman

True love is giving yourself even when it hurts.

Don’t be nasty.


“Whew! Stay in here much longer and I’ll really make a splash in the world!” –Frosty


“We evil magicians have to make a living too.” -Professor Hinkle


A Charlie Brown Christmas

Look for meaning beyond commercialism.

A little love changes everything.


“I never thought it was such a bad little tree. It’s not bad at all really. Maybe it just needs a little love.” -Linus


“We all know that Christmas is a big commercial racket. It’s run by a big eastern syndicate, you know.” -Lucy


A Christmas Carol

Bitterness and greed will destroy.

It’s never too late to make a major change.


“I will honour Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all the year.” -Scrooge


“There is nothing in the world so irresistibly contagious as laughter and good humor.”


The Polar Express

If an adventure beckons, go.

When you believe, everything changes for the better.


“There’s no greater gift than friendship.” -Santa


“Seeing is believing, but sometimes the most real things in the world are the things we can’t see.” -Conductor



Hallmark Christmas Movies

(lumped together because they are all the same).

Stop daydreaming.

Dump your current date because your true love is waiting in a small town.


“Our great editor asked if someone would be offended for saying they are all the same.” -Skip Prichard


“But everyone knows that they really are all the same, but we still watch them.” -Joy Prichard




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