Offbeat Christmas Movies Streaming Right Now

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We’ve already covered horror films you can watch this holiday season. But what about films that aren’t really considered Christmas films, even though the Christmas figures prominently in it?

 

Listen, I’m not even gonna get into the whole is-Die-Hard-a-Christmas-movie-or-not debate that continues to rile people up online. I will give you a list of twelve offbeat, alternative Christmas films you and your loved ones can stream this season. (BTW, let me give a quick shout-out to my all-time favorite, alt-Christmas movie, the 1984 Scottish dramedy Comfort and Joy, which is not on this list because you can’t officially stream it anywhere.)

 

Stalag 17 (1953)

William Holden won an Academy Award for Best Actor for his performance as a cynical POW in Billy Wilder’s WWII film. He’s one of the many American airmen trying to keep sane in a Luftwaffe camp during the Christmas season. He’s also the one the other POWs suspect is an informant.

Where to stream: YouTube, Amazon Prime, Google Play, Vudu

Offbeat Christmas Movies Streaming Right Now

Period of Adjustment (1962)

This comedy-drama, based on a Tennessee Williams play, has a young Jane Fonda as one of its stars. She’s a newlywed having trouble in her marriage to a Korean War vet (Jim Hutton). They also spend a very tense Christmas Eve with a newly separated couple (Tony Franciosa and Lois Nettleton).

Where to stream: YouTube, Amazon Prime, Google Play, iTunes, Vudu

The Silent Partner (1978)

This Canadian heist flick (based on novel adapted by future L.A. Confidential director Curtis Hanson) has Elliott Gould as a bored bank teller who incurs the wrath of Santa suit-wearing thief (Christopher Plummer), after he skims money from a bank robbery the psychotic Kris Kringle committed.

Where to stream: YouTube, Amazon Prime, Google Play, iTunes

Offbeat Christmas Movies Streaming Right Now

Trading Places (1983)

Of course, people know this Eddie Murphy-Dan Aykroyd as one of the most beloved comedies of the ‘80s. But people forget that this film was set around Christmastime, as established by that hilarious scene where a down-on-his-luck Aykroyd dons a Santa suit and seeks revenge on an upwardly mobile Murphy during a Christmas party.

Where to stream: YouTube, Amazon Prime, Google Play, iTunes, Vudu

Offbeat Christmas Movies Streaming Right Now

Edward Scissorhands (1990)

Here’s another adored movie people forget went down during the yuletide season. Tim Burton’s beautiful, dark, twisted fantasy stars Johnny Depp in a star-making turn as a gentle being who unfortunately has scissors for hands. Then-girlfriend Winona Ryder plays the girl who likes him anyway.

Where to stream: YouTube, Amazon Prime, Google Play, iTunes, Vudu, Starz.

Offbeat Christmas Movies Streaming Right Now

The Ref (1994)

Released in the spring of ‘94, this R-rated comedy from the late Ted Demme (Jonathan’s brother) has Denis Leary as a robber who takes a bickering couple (Judy Davis and a pre-scandal Kevin Spacey) hostage and ends up becoming embroiled in their dysfunctional holiday drama.

Where to stream: YouTube, Amazon Prime, Google Play, iTunes, Vudu

 

Go (1999)

This bit of Clinton-era, Generation-Y anarchy, directed by Doug Liman (Swingers, The Bourne Identity) features a cast of future well-known actors (including Katie Holmes, Timothy Olyphant, Taye Diggs and a really young Melissa McCarthy), playing aimless young folk going through one hell of a drug-and-party-fueled Christmas Eve.

Where to stream: YouTube, Amazon Prime, Google Play, iTunes, Vudu

 

Morvern Callar (2002)

If you enjoyed Lynne Ramsay’s bloody hitman saga You Were Never Really Here earlier this year, you might want to check out this moody lump of coal she did in her earlier years. Samantha Morton plays the title character, a woman who makes a drastic life change after she wakes up one Christmas morning and finds that her boyfriend has killed himself.

Where to stream: Amazon Prime

 

Tokyo Godfathers (2003)

While the Peter B. Kyne novel Three Godfathers has been adapted into three live-action films (including a John Ford movie starring John Wayne), this Japanese anime from director/manga artist Satoshi Kon, about three homeless people who discover an abandoned, newborn baby on Christmas Eve, is my favorite.

Where to stream: Crackle

Offbeat Christmas Movies Streaming Right Now

Kiss Kiss Bang Bang (2005)

Quite honestly, any Shane Black movie could’ve ended up on this list. The man manages to sneak in Christmas in nearly every movie he’s written and/or directed. This one appears to be the most Christmas-y, with Val Kilmer and Robert Downey, Jr. as an unlikely duo who get wrapped up in a murder-mystery during the holidays.

Where to stream: YouTube, Amazon Prime, Google Play, iTunes, Vudu, HBO Now

 

The Ice Harvest (2005)

For a while there, Billy Bob Thornton was becoming the go-to guy for darkly comic, Christmas tales. First came the bitterly hilarious Bad Santa in ‘03. Then came this little-seen black comedy from the late Harold Ramis (Caddyshack), where he and John Cusack played crooked gentlemen pulling off a heist on Christmas Eve.

Where to stream: YouTube, Amazon Prime, Google Play, iTunes, Vudu

 

Tangerine (2015)

Before he hit it big with the Oscar-nominated The Florida Project, Sean Baker got some iPhones and made this highly irreverent debut. It follows a couple of LA-based, transgender sex workers (Kitana Kiki Rodriguez and Mya Taylor) and all the drama they go through during a very eventful Christmas Eve.

Where to stream: YouTube, Amazon Prime, Google Play, iTunes, Vudu, Hulu

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