13 Holiday Movies to Binge-Watch This Season

It’s the most wonderful time of the year to stay inside and watch hours and hours of seasonal classics featuring women of color — add these films to your list

LLet’s face it, the holidays can be exhausting. You’re burned-out from last minute shopping. Your tummy is filled with the cookies you should’ve left out for Santa. Plus, it’s cold outside and your bed or couch is looking extra comfortable.

Why not plop down, take a break from the rush, and enjoy a few wholesome and hilarious holiday-themed movies?

If you’re wondering where to start, no worries! ZORA has you covered with a curated watch list of past and present films featuring women of color. ‘Tis the season to bring on the binge.

Almost Christmas (2016)

A dysfunctional family gets together for the holidays for the first time since the death of their matriarch. With characters portrayed by Mo’Nique, Gabrielle Union, and Gladys Knight in the mix, it’ll be a miracle if they can survive until Christmas.

Where to find it: Amazon Prime, YouTube

Best Man Holiday (2013)

Hilarious and heartbreaking, this sequel to ’90s classic The Best Man is about a group of friends who gather to celebrate the miracle of Christmas together, and, in many ways, discover the true meaning of the season.

Where to find it: Amazon Prime, YouTube

Black Nativity (2013)

Kasi Lemmons directs this musical drama, and modern day retelling, of a Langston Hughes play about a family evicted from their Baltimore apartment during the Christmas season. The film stars Mary J. Blige, Jennifer Hudson, and Angela Bassett.

Where to find it: Amazon Prime, YouTube

Ghosting: The Spirit of Christmas (2019)

The Bold Type star Aisha Dee lends her talents to a Christmas rom-com that puts a twist on ghosting when Dee’s character literally turns into a spirit after dying in a car crash. Don’t worry! There’s a happy ending to this unexpected special.

Where to find it: Hulu

Holiday Rush (2019)

New to Netflix this year is a comedy about a single father who finds himself unexpectedly unemployed right before December 25. It’s a holiday film filled with laughs, love, and life lessons.

Where to find it: Netflix

Mariah Carey’s Merriest Christmas (2015)

Queen of the Christmas songs and undisputed diva Mariah Carey hosts an all-star musical special featuring surprise celebrity guests and a reading of The Night Before Christmas.

Where to find it: Netflix

Merry Liddle Christmas (2019)

The beautiful and multitalented Kelly Rowland stars in a Lifetime movie inspired by her own real-life holiday catastrophe. She plays a successful woman whose perfectly pristine Christmas is put into danger when her not-so-perfect family descends upon her home.

Where to find it: Lifetime

The Holiday Calendar (2018)

Kat Graham and Quincy Brown star in this fantastical film about an Advent calendar that predicts the future. Of course, holiday hijinks ensue.

Where to find it: Netflix

The Princess Switch (2018)

You’re not seeing double. In this rom-com, Vanessa Hudgens plays two look-alikes — one regular, the other royalty — who decide to switch places in hopes of crafting a perfect holiday.

Where to find it: Netflix

The Nativity Story (2006)

This historical period drama about the nativity of Jesus Christ stars Keisha Castle-Hughes and was the first film to hold its world premiere in Vatican City. Now you can have just as epic of a screening from the comfort of your own home this holiday.

Where to find it: Amazon Prime, YouTube

The Nutcracker and the Four Realms (2018)

The incomparable Prima ballerina Misty Copeland showcases her dance skills in this epic take on holiday classic The Nutcracker. This time, the fantastical adventure involves a girl, a mouse, a key, sugar plum fairies, princesses, and magical lands of sweets and snowflakes.

Where to find it: Disney+, Netflix, Google+, Amazon Prime

The Knight Before Christmas (2019)

Vanessa Hudgens came back to Netflix for a second year in a row with a new, heartwarming film complete with snow, baking, family… oh, and time travel.

Where to find it: Netflix

This Christmas (2007)

No holiday watch list can be complete without the movie that will surely go down as a Christmas classic. Regina King, Lauren London, Loretta Devine, and more star in this movie all about food, family, and love. And isn’t that really what the holidays are all about?

Where to find it: Amazon Prime, YouTube

HONORABLE MENTION

Not all of these colorful, animated films feature WoC but we love them anyway!

Bonus: They’re great for kids and grown-ups alike

The Star (2017)

Gina Rodriguez, Oprah Winfrey, Mariah Carey, and more lend their voices to an animated retelling of the birth of Jesus. But this time, the animals in the manger get to share their side of the story.

Where to find it: Hulu

How the Grinch Stole Christmas (1966, 2000, and 2018)

Christmas got a whole lot Grinchier because now there are three ways to enjoy this holiday classic. You can watch the original Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas that we all grew up loving. Then there is also a hilarious, live-action version starring Jim Carrey. After that, you can compare them all to the newest animated version featuring Benedict Cumberbatch as the titular Grinch. It’s fun for the whole family.

Where to find it: Youtube, Amazon Prime, Netflix

The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993)

Whether or not this is a Christmas or a Halloween film, there’s no arguing that this animated musical is a staple for the holiday season.

Where to find it: Amazon, YouTube

What else should we add to this list? Share your favorite binge-worthy holiday specials in the comments. Happy holidays and happy watching!

Senior Platform Editor @ZORAmag | book lover | fangirl | Black woman | Terp

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