On the TV screen, the war for Christmas viewership has already begun. From Lifetime and Hallmark, who jump straight from Halloween fare to original Christmas movies without stopping for turkey, to Netflix and Amazon, who stream Christmas films both old and new, the deluge of Christmas content is bigger than ever this year. And viewers won't even need to leave the house. These Christmas movies on Amazon are the best rentals of the season, with family-friendly viewing for all.
There is tons of Christmas stuff on Netflix, but unlike Amazon, the streaming service once known for red envelope deliveries has turned its focus inward, aiming to add new films to the holiday lineup, instead of relying on older fare. This leaves services like Amazon prime rentals to pick up the slack, as their library gains more titles as Netflix lets them go.
It works great as a business model, since the more viewers use Prime to stream rentals, the more they'll also use it for Amazon music, and perhaps a couple of DVD purchases, and hey, did anyone check to see if there are paper towels?
In that way, Amazon has become the one stop shop for all things Christmas from the necessities when having guests to the presents to the entertainment around the TV screen.
Here are some of the best selections to be had this season.
'A Christmas Story'
In the 1940s, little Ralphie tries to convince his parents to get him a Red Ryder range-model BB gun for Christmas.
'The Muppet Christmas Carol'
The Muppets perform the classic Dickens holiday tale, with Kermit the Frog playing Bob Cratchit, the put-upon clerk of stingy Ebenezer Scrooge (Michael Caine). Other Muppets -- Miss Piggy, Gonzo, Fozzie Bear and Sam the Eagle -- weave in and out of the story, while Scrooge receives visits from spirits of three Christmases -- past, present and future.
'Jingle All The Way'
Workaholic Howard Langston (Arnold Schwarzenegger) wants to make things up to his son, Jamie (Jake Lloyd), and wife, Liz (Rita Wilson). He promises to get Jamie the hottest toy of the season, Turbo-Man -- even though it's Christmas Eve and the toy is practically sold out.
Adopted as a baby by one of Santa's elves (Bob Newhart), a man (Will Ferrell) leaves the workshop to search for his family in New York.
'The Polar Express'
Tom Hanks and director Robert Zemeckis reunite for The Polar Express, an inspiring adventure based on the beloved children's book by Chris Van Allsburg. When a doubting young boy takes an extraordinary train ride to the North Pole, he embarks on a journey of self-discovery that shows him that the wonder of life never fades.
'Tim Burton's The Nightmare Before Christmas'
The film follows the misadventures of Jack Skellington, Halloweentown's beloved pumpkin king, who has become bored with the same annual routine of frightening people in the "real world." When Jack accidentally stumbles on Christmastown, all bright colors and warm spirits, he gets a new lease on life - he plots to bring Christmas under his control by kidnapping Santa Claus and taking over the role. But Jack soon discovers even the best-laid plans of mice and skeleton men can go seriously awry.