Nothing brings the spirit of the season into our hearts quite like a great holiday movie. "Christmas films" come in many shapes and sizes and exist across many genres. Some, like "It's a Wonderful Life" and "A Christmas Story," are perennials, while others, such as "Die Hard," have only gradually become yuletide favorites. But they all have one thing in common: they use themes evoked by the holiday period - nostalgia, joy, togetherness, dysfunction, commercialism, or cynicism - as a force in their storytelling.
Film historian Jeremy Arnold’s new book, "Christmas in the Movies: 30 Classics to Celebrate the Season," showcases the very best among this uniquely spirited strain of cinema. Each film is profiled on what makes it a "Christmas movie," along with behind-the-scenes stories of its production, reception, and legacy.
Jeremy Arnold is a film historian, commentator, and author of "Turner Classic Movies: The Essentials and Lawrence of Arabia: The Fiftieth Anniversary."
Originally aired December 2018.