Elf movie
Elf

It's the time of year when you throw on your favorite holiday movies—the ones you've seen a million times and can watch them over and over—and get a much-needed injection of the holiday spirit (and in 2020, that injection is much, much needed). As a parent, one of the most heartwarming activities is introducing your kids to your favorite holiday movies and starting a new tradition.

Of course, that plan can go awry when you see those movies with new eyes—little eyes, that is. It all depends on how old your kids are and what you're comfortable with them watching or asking you about. Here's fair warning about scenes or themes you've probably forgotten about, but are actually kinda awkward/sexual/inappropriate for little ones.

Here are 6 holiday favorites you might want to skip for now:


  1. The Movie: Home Alone
    The Problem: I mean, the entire plot of this movie revolves around a child in danger, but we've all collectively put that aside as a society. The parts that might actually scare your kid are the ghoulish urban legend around Old Man Marley and the uber-violent fictional movie Kevin watches (Angels with Filthy Souls), which even freaks out Kevin.
  2. The Movie: The Sound of Music
    The Problem: There's a whole debate around whether The Sound of Music counts as a holiday movie we won't get into, but since people watch it this time of year, we're discussing it. Anyway, while WWII is history your kids will learn about eventually, you may not be ready for "Mama, what's Nazis?" while chugging eggnog in the glow of the Christmas tree lights.
  3. The Movie: Elf
    The Problem: Elf is pretty wholesome, but the part with Jovie in the shower (Zooey Deschanel) might prompt some awkward questions from your little one (I mean, Buddy is naive, but he really doesn't know it's weird to be in the ladies room?). Plus, the treatment of Miles Finch (Peter Dinklage) is offensive and not a good example for kids.
  4. The Movie: Love Actually
    The Problem: This movie is so sweet! So Christmas! So comforting! Except for the whole fat-shaming subplot around Natalie (Martine McCutcheon). Also, it's easy to forget that two characters connect on the set of a porn film. Fast forward!
  5. The Movie: It's a Wonderful Life
    The Problem: One of my hands-down holiday favorites. I can't wait to share it with my daughter, but man, I don't really want to have to talk about what suicide is before she watches it.
  6. The Movie: A Christmas Story
    The Problem: Every family has their own attitude around guns, but if you're trying to discourage guns as toys, this is not the movie you want your kids to see.

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