Larry Martino

Larry Martino

Larry Martino

A man and a woman reach for popcorn in a bowl set on the table between them as they get ready to watch one of their favorite holiday movies. There are strands of Christmas light strands behind the flat screen TV, and a lighted Christmas tree in the corner of the room.

It’s the holiday season, and that means it’s time to watch some of our family’s favorite Christmas flicks. We still have that Blu-ray DVD player, but most people nowadays stream their favorites on one of the many services available online. With that in mind, the folks at decided to see which holiday movies receive the most searches online. (Please be aware that is a gambling website and is not appropriate for those under 21 years of age).

Here’s How They Determined America’s Most Searched Holiday Movies

The most important thing to remember about this ranking of holiday flicks is that they are the most searched online, not necessarily the most loved, liked, or favorite. With that in mind, it is interesting to note how many of our family’s favorite Christmas movies do NOT make the list. More on that later.

Specifically, here’s how they came up with their list. The gambling website “used Google Keyword Planner to analyze the number of searches for more than 180 Christmas movies.” Likewise, they combined movie titles “with terms such as ‘buy,’ ‘blu ray,’ ‘Netflix,’ and ‘watch online’ to cover the various ways people watch these movies.” So, there are plenty of most watched and loved holiday flicks which do not make the list.

Here Are Some Of America’s Holiday Favorites NOT On This List

The first glaring omission on this list is the 1983 holiday classic A Christmas Story. This is a must watch movie for most families during the holiday season. Why would TBS and TNT air this film for 24 consecutive hours starting on Christmas Eve? They do it every year so it must get great ratings.

I assume that many of the movies which air on broadcast TV quite a bit during the holiday season do not require most people to search for them online. Therefore, these movies don’t make the list. In fact, only two of the top 10 films on the list are from the 20th century! The other eight were released 2000 or later.

There are other great (in my opinion) holiday movies that don’t make their top 15 list. For example, National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation from 1989. I can practically recite every hilarious line from that movie. Yet, I still love to watch it every year around this time.

Additionally, only two of the many film adaptations of the Charles Dickens novel A Christmas Carol make the list. Furthermore, holiday films such as Polar Express, Home Alone, How The Grinch Stole Christmas, The Santa Clause, Love Actually, The Nightmare Before Christmas, or A Charlie Brown Christmas make the list.

We could go on and on, but instead, let’s just get to the top seven most searched holiday movies online!


  • 7) 'The Night Before'

    This 2015 holiday movie stars Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Seth Rogan, Anthony Mackie, and Jillian Bell. According to“three lifelong friends spend the night in New York City looking for the Holy Grail of Christmas parties.” This all takes place on Christmas Eve. I’ve never seen this flick, but it is rated “R” and gets a 6.4 out of 10 on It’s the seventh most searched holiday film according to the CSGO Luck survey.

  • 6) 'Scrooged'

    Here’s one of my favorite holiday movies. Billy Murray is fantastic in this film, which is a twisted, comedic take on the novel A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens. Scrooged is the sixth most searched holiday flick online. Murray plays “a selfish, cynical television executive (who) is haunted by three spirits bearing lessons on Christmas Eve,” according to Lots of laughs, and yet I always tear up at the end when Murray’s character, Frank Cross, finally understands the meaning of Christmas. This 1988 film stars Karen Allen as Murray’s love interest, and John Forsythe as the Jacob Marley type character from the Dickens story.

  • 5) 'Little Women' (2019)

    There have been numerous adaptations of this Louisa May Alcott novel published in 1868. In fact, according to HollywoodReporter.comthe story has been “adapted to the screen more than a dozen times.” Plus, there have been quite a few TV mini-series which have been based on this novel. The most recent successful film adaptation was released in 2019. This version stars Saoirse Ronan, Emma Watson, Florence Pugh, and Eliza Scanlen as the four March sisters. This is the fifth most searched holiday movie according to the CSGO Luck survey.

  • 4) 'Bad Santa'

    This dark Christmas comedy from 2003 stars Billy Bob Thornton as a conman setting out to rob mall stores on Christmas Eve. However, he and his “Little Helper,” played by Tony Cox, “run into problems when the conman befriends a troubled kid,” portrayed by Brett Kelly, according to IMDb.comActress Lauren Graham and comic actor Bernic Mac round out the cast of the fourth most searched holiday flick online.

  • 3) 'Elf'

    Here’s another one of our family’s favorite holiday movies. I’m a big Will Ferrell fan, and he totally becomes a child-like elf in this Jon Favreau film. Legends of the big and small screens like James Caan, Bob Newhart, and Ed Asner play huge parts in this family-friendly comedy from 2003. It’s hard to believe this movie is already 20 years old! If you’ve never seen it, Ferrell plays Buddy The Elf, who “travels from the North Pole to New York City to meet his biological father,” according to Anyway, Elf is the third most searched holiday movie online.

  • 2) 'The Holiday'

    Here’s a romantic-comedy holiday film from 2006 which stars Cameron Diaz, Kate Winslet, Jude Law, and Jack Black. It’s one of my wife’s favorites. I’ve never been able to watch it all the way through. According to “Two women troubled with guy-problems swap homes in each other’s countries (USA and England), where they each meet a local guy and fall in love.” Per the CSGO Luck survey, it’s the second most searched online holiday film.

  • 1) 'It's A Wonderful Life'

    One of the most touching and enduring holiday movies of all time tops the list of most searched Christmas films. It’s A Wonderful Life stars legendary actors James Stewart and Donna Reed, who are joined by a litany of fantastic character actors from Hollywood’s “Golden Era.” This iconic Frank Capra movie from 1946 did NOT do well at the box office upon it’s initial release. However, once it began airing every year on television, over and over again, it has become one of America’s favorites. So, grab some popcorn, get cozy on the sofa, and enjoy!

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