One of the most prominent film critics in recent years, Mark Kermode has developed a stable reputation for being a voice of reason in his BBC show Kermode and Mayo’s Film Review where he discusses the latest blockbusters as well as neglected arthouse ventures from around the world. He is trusted by devout followers for his spectacular knowledge of film history as well as the machinations of the industry.
According to Kermode, the profit motives of studios and streaming platforms have contributed to the oversaturation of content which is diminishing “the essence of cinema”. He confessed that he still has a romantic belief that people still want to go to the theatres and participate in the traditional cinematic experience even though the pandemic has proven otherwise.
As a part of his job, Kermode curates topical lists from time to time which are extremely helpful for beginners looking to delve into a particular subject. Since the holidays are coming up, he has done the same for Christmas but don’t worry, it is not an academic exercise. Instead, Kermode picked a range of different Christmas films from varying genres.
Settling the debate once and for all, Kermode selected the action classic Die Hard as his top Christmas pick. While remembering the incredible soundtrack, Kermode wrote: “The soundtrack includes snatches of Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony and Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow sung by Vaughn Monroe. The most memorable tune however, is Christmas In Hollis by Run DMC.”
Check out the complete list of Mark Kermode’s favourite Christmas films below.
Mark Kermode’s 8 favourite Christmas films:
- Die Hard (John McTiernan, 1988)
- White Christmas (Michael Curtiz, 1954)
- Comfort and Joy (Bill Forsyth, 1984)
- It’s A Wonderful Life (Frank Capra, 1946)
- Rare Exports (Jalmari Helander, 2010)
- The Muppet Christmas Carol (Brian Henson, 1992)
- Tangerine (Sean Baker, 2015)
- Miracle on 34th Street (Les Mayfield, 1994)
Along with regular entries on Kermode’s Christmas list, he also chose Sean Baker’s brilliant 2015 drama Tangerine which chronicles the story of a trans sex worker who navigates the difficult labyrinths of life. Shot with only three iPhone 5S phones, Tangerine was cited as one of the greatest films of the year.
Set during Christmas Eve in Hollywood, Tangerine might not be a Christmas film but it is definitely one of the best films which take place during that time and even features Christmas music. “Sean Baker’s vibrant feature was, incredibly, shot on an iPhone 5, but looks a million dollars and manages to find beauty in the strangest places,” Kermode declared.