Refresh Your Holiday Watchlist With These Christmas Movies New to DVD/Blu-ray

Refresh Your Holiday Watchlist With These Christmas Movies New to DVD/Blu-ray

Dec 02, 2016

We’ve officially arrived at the Christmas season, and while cable channels and streaming services will be overflowing with holiday offerings, here’s a quick tour through some new DVDs and Blu-rays that will help to make the season bright.


The Big Kahuna

If anyone were ever to designate the Official American Christmas Movie, the clear winner would have to be that legendary Frank Capra film that’s the only black-and-white film that can stake out three hours of prime-time television every November and December. But every holiday movie fan’s library should have It’s a Wonderful Life: 70th Anniversary Platinum Edition (Paramount), a new two-disc set that offers a crisp, hi-def remaster of the beloved fantasy (plus, if you must, a colorized version), alongside documentaries, a trailer, and lobby-card replicas.


For the Kids

Whether you’re all gathering in front of the screen together with cocoa in hand, or distracting the children so you can wrap some gifts or address some cards, there are plenty of family-friendly options. Should you miss the holiday sequel’s broadcast debut,

Dolly Parton’s Christmas of Many Colors: Circle of Love (Warner Home Video) will make it to DVD on December 20. And kids who love public television will enjoy the seasonal adventures Daniel Tiger’s Christmas: Daniel’s Winter Wonderland and Kate & Mim-Mim: A Christmas Wish (both PBS).

There’s plenty of animation that celebrates the Christmas holiday and the winter weather, including A Frozen Christmas (MVD Visual) – despite the title, it’s about Santa and not princesses – the acclaimed Stick Man (PBS), French imports Santa’s Apprentice & The Magic Snowflake (Anchor Bay/Weinstein), the delightful Snowtime! (Shout Kids) and, from Aardman Animation, Shaun the Sheep: We Wish Ewe a Merry Christmas (Lionsgate Home Entertainment).

And finally, if your holidays aren’t complete without people turning into robots, you won’t want to miss Power Rangers Dino Charge: Hero (Lionsgate Home Entertainment).


For Grown-Ups

If you like a good cozy mystery at the holidays, a hit British series delivers Murdoch Mysteries: A Merry Murdoch Christmas (RLJ/Acorn), featuring stolen presents, Yuletide mayhem, and a guest-star turn from Ed Asner. One of my favorite Christmas movies of recent years didn’t stay long in theaters, but I’m hoping it finds a new fan base on home video: namely, 2015’s Love the Coopers (Lionsgate Home Entertainment), an ensemble comedy featuring Diane Keaton, John Goodman, Olivia Munn, Jake Lacy, Amanda Seyfried, Ed Helms, Timothée Chalamet, Marisa Tomei, Anthony Mackie, June Squibb and Alan Arkin. And the too-paltry genre of LGBT Christmas movies gets a new addition this year with the romantic comedy Shared Rooms (Wolfe Video), from the director of Make the Yuletide Gay.

For fans of dark comedy, there’s the hilarious Brian Posehn (The Sarah Silverman Program) as the thoroughly inappropriate Uncle Nick (Dark Sky Films), and the holiday hijinks of The Night Before (Sony Pictures Home Entertainment) are now available in more Christmas-y packaging.

Finally, two great options for lovers of holiday horror: The 1970’s cult classic Black Christmas gets the full Scream Factory treatment in a lavish new Blu-ray release – who knew director Bob Clark would go on to make the even more popular and thoroughly different A Christmas Story just a decade or so later? – as well as last year’s funny, chilling Krampus (Universal Studios Home Entertainment), which also has new holiday-appropriate cover art.

Whatever you’re watching and whoever you’re watching it with, have a great holiday season.

Tags: DVD Obscura
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