Every year as the Christmas holiday approaches, various websites publish their "Top Christmas Movies To Watch" list, or something titled similarly.  Many of us have seen a good share of the films that top these lists, but when it comes to my personal favorites, I'd bet the house some are NOT on your holiday radar.

Let me begin by sharing this link to the Mirror's 2017 list as an example of extreme overkill. Page upon page of film titles--attached to lengthy videos--is a great way to scare film enthusiasts away. My archive consists of the Christmas movies that my family CANNOT celebrate the holiday season without, followed by a short clip that best reflects the brilliance of the picture.

Here are my top five, in order from best, to pretty freaking fantastic.

1. Christmas Vacation, 1989

Two words...Cousin Eddie. The egg nog scene is cinematic gold.

2. It's a Wonderful Life, 1946

What makes this film a must-see for me, is that it reminds me that there is always a light at the end of the tunnel. I think that's an important thing to remember when the holidays come around and depression spikes.

3. The Family Stone, 2005

The reason I love this movie is in the title. The film is a reminder of just how our feelings for our loved ones who have passed on are amplified by the arrival of Christmas. It's also a pretty darn accurate depiction of family chemistry, at least in my experience.

4. Four Christmases, 2008

This movie is not only laugh-at-loud funny throughout, but it's also spot on when it comes to splitting holidays among In-laws.

5. How The Grinch Stole Christmas, 2000

Jim Carrey is fantastic as everyone's favorite holiday bah-humbugger. Having Anthony Hopkins narrate the film was pure brilliance too.

There they are, my top five favorite Christmas films of all time. If I HAD to list my top 10, I'd include "A Christmas Story," "Polar Express," "Elf," "Holiday Inn," and "Scrooged."

I hope you have a wonderful 2017 Christmas, and cheers to the movies that bring families closer during the holidays.