(Even More) Mystery Christmas Movies

Continued from Mystery Christmas Movies

White Christmas 

Is it really that time of year again, when folks start looking for those semi-remembered Christmas movies?  Yes, it is!

Josh B. starts us off with the following:

Help! I am looking for a Christmas movie I used to rent at the video store in the mid-80's. I believe it was foreign and dubbed over in English. It involved a teacher taking kids to the North Pole or something...perhaps on a plane. The teacher sang a bit. I think one of the songs included lyrics that went something like this; "No more work, no more school....Christmas Day's on its way." HELP!

To which Sheila adds some details about the singing teacher . . .

I saw a reader, Josh B., searching for a movie; I believe I am looking for the same movie!  The teacher sings on a bus! And it's about a boy who wishes his father was home for Christmas!  Someone tells him, "If you wish for something really hard your wish will always come true!"  Can you help?

Update:  We don't yet know what the movie is, but Samantha G. knows what it isn't, which is something, and writes . . .

This movie is not Martin the Cobbler. I remember this movie and have been trying to find it myself no one seems to know the name or how to find it if you could repost the question that would be great!

NEW update! According to a correspondent mysteriously known only as psb (but, of course, I'd be mysterious too if I were writing to strangers on the internet), the movie is a French film called J'ai rencontré le Père Noël  ... in English it's ... I Believe in Santa Claus ... starring Karen Chéryl, Armand Meffre, Emeric Chapuis. Thanks!!!

And Alisa asks about this film:

OK, I have a movie that I saw as a little girl and for the life of me wish I could remember. They stopped airing it a long time ago, but I have always been on the hunt for it. I want to say it’s made from “clay” but not entirely sure…it’s not the Will Vinton’s Claymation Christmas. I remember a scene of an old man who may have been a shoe maker? But, he helps a woman and her child and I remember him wrapping the baby up in a blanket. I think the stories were religious stories, but can’t quite remember. Help?! I hope!

Update: Thomas C writes:

It is a Claymation type (if not the real thing) of movie called Martin the Cobbler. It is based on a Tolstoy story. 

Jennifer M. asks:

My mom and I remember a Christmas movie - probably made for TV - probably late 70s or 80s? The story is about a cowboy that has to stop at a cabin in a snowstorm on Christmas Eve. The old Grandma(?) has not made a Christmas for her 2 grandkids - too crabby. The cowboy wins her around to making a garment or doll for the girl and he carves a toy for the boy.....can't remember how it ends......want to see it again. Bad! Help anyone.

Update: Bee from Texas (who helped with a lot of movies tells us:

Jennifer M. seems to be talking about the Hallmark Hall of Fame movie Stubby Pringle's Christmas. One of the Bridges brothers plays a cowboy who is going to a dance on Christmas Eve but gets sidetracked helping a poor family who doesn't have a tree or any presents.

Carrie and Steve want to know . . .

Help please this has been driving me crazy for years. Looking for a Christmas movie I believe early to mid 80's. All I remember was some kids I think they were siblings, they maybe were homeless or orphaned? They were dirty and in ragged clothes and didn't believe in Christmas. I remember them going to Christmas mass and one of the kids crying. it was a very touching movie I recall but that's all I remember. I hope I'm not mixing movies and memories up, does anyone know what this is?

Solution, thanks to Monique!

I think Jade L and Carrie & Steve are talking about the same movie: "Santa Claus: The Movie" circa 1985 with Dudley Moore and John Lithgow.  Hope this helps!

Yvonne has a fairly vivid memory of this one, and it sounds interesting . . .

One night in the 80's or 90's I saw the middle of a movie. I do not know the name or the main actors. The premise I gathered is that there were two wealthy society families. The parents of both lived very fake, appearance oriented, and ostentatious lives. They are very removed from their children emotionally. Two sons for sure in one family and at least a daughter in the other. They all left home for college and other pursuits, since they could not wait to get out of that environment.

The scene I saw was one where the younger boy and the girl were meeting during the holidays after several years of being away. The boy was a bit of a dork, and quiet when younger but is handsome, composed and successful. (Still wearing glasses, I believe.) He is very at peace with his family and who he is. He has nothing to prove or regret. He likes the girl, always secretly has, and wants to help her be at peace with herself and her family.

The girl always had a crush on the older brother because he was outspoken and called attention to himself and what he did not like about his parents society. She thinks that he is brave and knows how to handle the parents. She has been outwardly compliant, but inwardly struggling for years. She thinks this older brother is who and what she wants. She goes on a date with him, instead of the younger brother, and he bores her with odd poetry he wrote. She discovers that he is dull and has no purpose but using his families money and talking about himself. She starts to question which brother is the remarkable one. (I thought I recognized the older brother as actor Peter MacNicol from Ghost Busters 2 and Ally McBeal.)

Still confused about herself and her parents and what she wants, she shows up drunk wearing a wild outfit to holiday (Hew Year's Eve?) party. She tells everyone what she thinks of them, especially her overbearing mother. Her mother is constantly remarking on her appearance. (Mom reminds me of a character like actress Christine Baranski from Mama Mia and the lady love for Jim Carey in the Grinch.)

The younger brother is disappointed by her behavior and she wants to know how he survived their upbringing. He says he had every opportunity growing up, except a difficult home life that he wanted to get away from. He just took advantage of education, waited his time until he could have the education, ability, and blessing of family to choose to come and go. That was the way to survive. Something like that.

I never got to see the beginning or the end, but I really like this middle and watch every year to see if I can find it on TV or on sale in store or online. The acting was better than a B movie grade and so was the cinematography.

Was it a pilot of a show that never went anywhere?
A possible remake of an older plot or play?
Or a made for TV holiday special not available for purchase yet?
Or was it nothing special about the holidays, just a cute boy next door grows up movie that happened to have a holiday scene in the middle?

Thomas C. (who solved one of the mystery films above) asks about this interesting-sounding film:

Christmas movie (probably made for TV). I thought the star was Eli Wallach. It starts out in a mental hospital where they do a live Nativity scene with real animals. Three of the “residents” are tapped to play the Kings. In full kings costumes they hop on the camels and ride them out of hospital and on into Los Angeles “following the star.” . They end up in a tent city in LA where one of the kings who had been a Viet Nam medic was confined due to the inability to cope with the ravages of war delivered a baby for “Joseph and Mary.” The hospital ends up getting their residents back with two of the three kings well on the road to normalcy. Wallach (or whoever) was just satisfied to have been one of the kings.

Update: Bee from Texas offers this:

I think Thomas C. is talking about a 1987 made-for-TV movie called The Three Kings. Eli Wallach isn't in it but several other older actors who have passed away are.

Jade L. admits this is vague . . .

I am also seeking the title of a Christmas movie I remember watching about 25 years ago (1985-ish). I cannot remember lots about it but would really like to see it again. It was an American film, I think set in New York. The main character is a homeless boy. I recall a scene where either he comes into money and buys maccas OR is finishing the leftovers on people's trays and scoffing the food down. I'm pretty sure the film also has a fair few scenes with Santa. Sorry this is really vague, no wonder I haven't been able to find it so far, but hope someone can help! Merry Christmas!

Solution, thanks to Monique!

I think Jade L and Carrie & Steve are talking about the same movie: "Santa Claus: The Movie" circa 1985 with Dudley Moore and John Lithgow.  Hope this helps!

Jeff H. asks about a movie that sounds kind of familiar about a retiring Santa . . .

I just found your site and wondering if you could help me out.  I'm trying to figure out a movie probably from the 90's. It's been a long time and I only saw part of the movie so my memory is vague at best. Santa has retired (because he thinks no one believes in him anymore?). I think he has grandchildren and they discover that he has a collection of letters to Santa. He eventually comes out of retirement to save Christmas.  Any chance?

Rhianna recalls something that's been driving her crazy . . . .

I have the video of the Christmas movie but it doesn't play anymore and all it says on the front of the tape is "Video visit from Santa TV celebrations 1988" At one time the video came with a paper gold key and was kind of interactive following two elves on a journey one elf was cranky always and the other was funny I can't remember for what but at times they would ask the viewers for help like when they came across a pine tree that wanted to be a Christmas tree but wasn't pretty enough and you used your magic key to make her all decorated and stuff. I think the elves had to get the key to Santa so he could open the doors to Christmas or something.

It's been driving me crazy for years to figure out were to get another copy of this movie.

C L in Idaho is looking for something that may be European . . .

The movie I am trying to find contains the story about how the Tradition of Santa begins. I believe it is an older movie and seems European? The boy begins by secretly leaving presents outside the other children's doors. I believe he leaves them in their shoes? It is a wonderful film and I am so wanting to reunite with this tradition. I hope you can help. Many thanks!

Kathleen remembers something from the 1980's, and writes . . .

I came across your site and don't know if you still do this. I remember a movie from the eighties that had a talking Christmas tree. I thank you so much for help.

Update: Bee from Texas thinks it may not be from the 1980's . . .

It's not from the '80s, but Kathleen might be thinking of an animated special based on the song "Christopher the Christmas Tree."

Charly says this isn't "A Rockport Christmas," and now I'm curious about that movie:

Years ago, I saw a black & white movie played on tv around the holiday season. There was a country family, and I remember the oldest son (or father?) had been off to war, and the family anticipated his return for the holiday.  I know that sounds like "A Rockport Christmas", but from what I read others say, I don't think that was it.  I remember the youngest boy feeling either left out or guilty about something, and he ran away in a snowstorm and got lost.  I can't remember much else, except that either one or both return home for the holiday.  It was a bittersweet movie, and I would love to find it again.

Aliyah recalls something about angel wings . . .

I'm trying to find a Christmas movie.  It deals with a single mom whose young daughter is the star in a Christmas pageant.  She doesn't have the money for real angel wings so her son goes to an old lady's house and tries to steal the money; ,an angel appears to him to try and stop him and tell him that if he doesn't pick his sister up from school something bad will happen (in a vision the girl walks home and is hit by a car).  Please help me.

J. L. in Philadelphia asks about an elf movie which sounds vaguely familiar . . .

I am trying to find the name of a movie I think was on TV sometime in the late 90's or early 2000. It was about an elf who hid in a car trunk and ended up at a warehouse of an owner who did not believe in Christmas. the elf tries to help the factory increase production so that the workers can have Christmas off, but ends up causing all kinds of issues and eventually the owner ends up regaining the meaning of Christmas and gives the employees a Christmas party and the day off. Does anyone know the name or where I can find this movie?

Celeste is looking for a pre-Toy Story movie about toys . . .

I am looking for the title of a Christmas cartoon movie that came on television every year in the late 80s or early 90s where the toys came alive after a boy left his bedroom ... same concept as Toy Story, but way before Toy Story came out.

Update: Bee from Texas (who really knows Christmas movies) writes:

The Muppets' The Christmas Toy fits the description given by Celeste.

Robin asked about this Christmas movie with a house fire . . .

A few years ago my daughter watched a Christmas movie where there was a house fire and the little girl wants to go back in and get the angel off the Christmas tree. She has an older brother (maybe her dad) and the angel has something to do with her mother that has died. There is an angel that comes to help the family. That's all we can remember.

And a question about a movie that sounds so familiar but we just can't place it, from Chris:

Hello, Chris here. I was wondering if anyone could recall a (made for TV I think) movie about a girl who lived in the country with her dad, the Girl won the Christmas tree at school but wasn’t allowed to have it at home. At the end we find that her mother is dead and there is a star the mom had made hidden in a box that the father has the daughter place on top of the tree. There was also a thanksgiving special involving this family. And no it’s not Little House. This would have been early 1970’s.  Thanks for all the help!!!!

Emily asks:

I'm trying to remember this one animated Christmas film, probably early 90s but could been before that. A child stops believing in Christmas/Santa. Then there's something to do with a very tiny gift on the tree. That's all I have, sorry. It isn't Polar Express but I guess a similar theme with the kid no longer believing. I really wish I could remember this film.

Kelly wonders . . .

Searching for a Christmas movie. Begins with two elves (I think puppets) likely a 1980 or 90s movie. The scene begins with these two elves and they get a phone call from Santa, the elves have to deliver the magic key to Santa. The elves go on a journey through the North Pole where they meet a pine tree. The pine tree is a female actress dressed in a tree, she tells the elves she is picked on by the taller pine trees. The scene ends with her crying and singing O Christmas Tree, eventually the elves make it to Santa. Santa is a male actor and surprise the pine tree is there decorated beautifully. She sings and Santa flies off as the movie ends. Any idea what movie this is? Thanks!

Paul, age 42, remembers this film:

I'm now 42 but as a young boy I vaguely remember watching a film but can't remember the title. It was (I think) about a group of toys that we're going to be burned in a fire unless they found Santa, so one (or all can't remember) set of to find him and save the day.I would love to see this film again please help.

Breanna's been Googling this holiday season . . .

I've been googling & searching for an old Christmas movie (maybe about 2000's?) possibly made for tv & used to play on one the kids channels from back then like abc family or Disney family. Animated about St. Nicholas but he doesn't know he's Santa Claus & is living with elves or fairies or something of the sort. They call him Nick & I only half remember him being a teenager with blond hair, was left as a baby but he didn't know who he was. It's been driving me crazy for years! Please help me solve this.

If a reader has an idea as to the titles of the movies described, please let us know at djmcadam@gmail.com - thanks!  And many thanks to our mystery-solvers - you've made our readers happy!




Mystery Christmas Movies 2011


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