When you think of the holidays, it’s easy to picture family gathered around the Christmas tree opening presents on Christmas morning with the kids. For myself, I am usually surrounded by my nieces and nephews on Christmas morning while my mom makes her delicious tamales. Christmas should be about family, but it represents so much more to those of us who are considered single during the holidays. I know several people who live on their own and are not currently attached to anyone. Although we all cherish the holidays to be surrounded by family, we must also remember those that spend this time alone. I have gathered a list of movies that single people can enjoy while drinking a nice cup of coffee or other holiday drink. These movies can be enjoyed alone or with company and they all appreciate what it’s like to be single during the holidays.
Top 10 Christmas movies for singles
This movie centers around a woman (Susan Sarandon) who is single in her 40’s during the holidays and is busy taking care of her mother who has been hospitalized for quite a while. It also follows the story of several other characters that include a couple (Paul Walker and Penelope Cruz) who is recently engaged but is having problems because of the man’s jealousy. There are a total of five storylines in this film and we see how each character is interwoven with each other in unexpected ways. What I loved most about this film is the fact that each character finds themselves alone during the holidays however the common thread is that they are all looking for love.
The Holiday (2006)
I love this movie because it centers around two women (Cameron Diaz and Kate Winslet) who are heartbroken over the holidays and find a way to leave their respective towns in order to forget about their problems. They end up “house swapping” and one spends the holidays in Los Angeles while the other one spends it in a small town outside of London. Don’t we all just want to do that sometimes? We just wish we could escape for the holidays and come back refreshed for the new year. I like this movie because not only does it talk about heartbreak, but it also centers on finding new love during the holidays. It’s like a little beacon of hope for those of us who are currently unattached.
Nothing Like the Holidays (2008)
There are not too many Latino Christmas films in circulation, so when this movie came out, I was one of the first in line to watch it in the theatre. This movie is surrounded by a large rambunctious family who comes together to celebrate the holidays. There is something for everyone in this movie and plenty of single people as well. This quirky Puerto Rican family centered in the Chicago area will inspire you to try out some delicious Puerto Rican food and drink. It will also get you in the mood for some dancing and celebrating of the posada which is like a neighborhood parade that many Latinos celebrate to honor the birthday of Jesus Christ. You will learn a little bit about the Puerto Rican culture while watching this film and one drink you will have to try is the “coquito” which is a sort of eggnog-type holiday drink. The oldest son (John Leguizamo) is the one that keeps this family together but even he will have to be humbled in this film by his siblings and their experiences. I really enjoyed this film because it exposed me to a new culture and showed me that everyone brings their own story to the Christmas table. It also focused on friendships and how you always have that one friend who comes over for Christmas dinner.
Love Actually (2003)
I was introduced to this movie a few years ago and I immediately fell in love with it. The opening act draws you in with the holiday music setting the tone for the rest of the movie. This is a movie that takes place in England, so if you love the British accent and some Hugh Grant then you will love this movie. It follows several stories which is kind of a common theme in many Christmas movies. My favorite story in this film is the one where an interracial couple gets married and the best friend of the groom falls in love with the bride. I also like the story where Hugh Grant who plays the prime minister of England falls in love with one of his staff members. Then there’s the British writer who goes to Portugal for peace and quiet to write his next book and ends up falling in love with the house maid. There is so much going on this movie, that there really is something for everyone. It will make you laugh and cry all in one sitting. There’s love, loss and infidelity to name a few themes so have the tissues next to you. The feeling I took away from this movie is that no matter where you live, there is always a special place where you can fall in love. You might even find love in another country with someone who doesn’t even speak your language.
Last Holiday (2006)
This movie is about a woman (Queen Latifah) who is diagnosed as being terminally ill, so she decides to sell all her possessions and stay at an expensive European hotel for the holidays to enjoy her last few weeks. This is a lighthearted movie with a message of hope for everyone. One of my favorite parts of the film is towards the beginning when Georgia (Queen Latifah) shows her book of “Possibilities.” In this book is her wedding to her crush at work Sean Williams (LL Cool J) and her hopes of becoming a chef one day. She embarks on a journey in Europe to do things she has never done before and eat expensive dinners made by well known chefs. This is such a great movie because Georgia (Queen Latifah) is a single woman with hopes and dreams to one day marry the man of her dreams and open up a restaurant. This movie truly inspired me in several ways: 1) traveling alone is okay, 2) splurge once in a while, and 3) dining alone is not a bad thing.
Just Friends (2005)
If you are ready for some major laughs, then you should definitely watch this movie. It is about a man (Ryan Reynolds) who comes home to New Jersey for the holidays and intends to woo his former best friend (Amy Smart) from high school. Lots has changed since then and Chris (Ryan Reynolds) is no longer overweight like he was in high school. He is a successful record producer based in Los Angeles who also happens to be a womanizer. When he goes back to New Jersey, he fully intends to get Jamie (Amy Smart) out of the friend zone. This movie will make you reminisce about your high school days and that best friend you wished could’ve turned into more. Didn’t we all have one of those? The best part of the film is the incident at the ice skating rink but I won’t ruin it. Be ready for some serious laughs.
Sex and the City: The Movie (2008)
This movie has single written all over it. If you didn’t follow the girls through their hit sitcom on HBO many years ago, don’t worry, you won’t need to in order to enjoy this movie. The women are preparing for a big wedding in this movie for Carrie (Sarah Jessica Parker) and Mr. Big (Chris Noth). Of course all you can imagine goes wrong and Carrie is left to muster the holidays on her own. The girls come in to the rescue and jet off to Mexico on Carrie’s honeymoon vacation in place of Mr. Big. If you’ve ever been through a bad breakup or a divorce or been left at the altar, which let’s face it, many of us have, then this is the movie for you. With the help of Carrie’s friends, Carrie is able to put her life back together just in time for the holidays. Not only does Carrie go through a breakup but so does Miranda (Cynthia Nixon) so we see what they do to get through Christmas and New Year’s Eve. The message in this movie, just like in the television show, is that having great friends is like having a safety net. They will never let you fall.
A Charlie Brown Christmas (1965)
I remember when I first got divorced 5 years ago, I was living alone in a one bedroom apartment and had plenty of time to catch up on movies. Christmas was so difficult for me that first year I lived alone because there was so much down time. I remember watching this movie in the living room while I curled up with a cup of hot chocolate, the heater blasting, and a blanket covering me on the sofa. I will never forget this moment because Charlie Brown helped me realize that being alone was not that bad. Charlie Brown sure knows how to cheer someone up because let’s face it, he deals with some of the same problems we go through as adults. In the opening scene, Charlie Brown says he feels depressed because of the over-commercialization of Christmas. He then goes to see Lucy for psychiatric help. His friends encourage him to direct a Christmas play to cheer himself up. All sorts of things go wrong, but the Peanuts cast prevails at the end. The scene I like best is when they are getting ready to put on the Christmas play and everyone is dancing on stage. It’s such a sweet moment and the music will surely cheer anyone up. Every time I see this movie, I think of that time I was alone and how the Peanuts cast cheered me up. It will cheer you up too!
The Best Man Holiday (2013)
My fellow blogger, Melissa, suggested I add this movie to the list and I can’t agree with her more. As I was watching it, I couldn’t help but think, “Why don’t my sorority sisters and I ever get together for the holidays?” That is what happens in this film. A bunch of college friends get together after 15 years to essentially catch up on life and talk about their new endeavors. Most people think of families getting together during the holidays, but this movie really focuses on how friendships develop over the years and how friends can come together for the holidays. It is an important message because sometimes people forget to celebrate friendships when they are so occupied with family members. We see several themes in this movie following the different characters, but my favorite scene is when the cast volunteers at a food bank on Christmas Day. I would love to volunteer at a food bank with my closest friends on Christmas Day. The memories made would be priceless!
Sleepless in Seattle (1993)
This movie is about a little boy that decides to call a radio talk show to find his widowed father (Tom Hanks) a partner. Several women show interest and write to Sam (Tom Hanks) and one woman (Meg Ryan) writes him a letter that they should meet at the Empire State Building on Valentine’s Day. This is such a cute story because Sam’s son Jonah wants his dad to find new love. This reminds me of my niece Abigail who has asked me countless times when I’m going to get married again. She said she wants to be the flower girl this time around. I think it’s so cute when all kids want to do is make sure you’re happy. I believe this is a great movie for single parents because it gives them hope that there is someone out there who might want to start a family for the holidays. I also like that this movie included two complete strangers meeting one another. Does that still happen nowadays? Blind love. Who knows?
I hope you enjoy this list of films to make you feel good about being single during the holidays. You can easily get lost in these movies and they will resurface old feelings, so if you need to grab a tissue go for it! On a good note, I hope you gained some ideas on perhaps starting new traditions for the holidays like hosting a friends Christmas, volunteering somewhere or trying out a “coquito” Puerto Rican drink. There’s so much to do during the holidays that being single should not be a reason to miss out on all the festivities. Merry Christmas!