This article first appeared in part at InContention.com on December 23, 2008. It seemed like a good time to re-purpose it for new readers here at HitFix and to give the usual list-making shenanigans a rest for a week.

Tis the season, no?

I don’t have the heart to call this a “best” list per se. So I'm giving it a different angle. Every year I have a few staples of the season that make their way into my DVD player or, in some instances — gasp! — my VCR, like new friends come home to visit before going back on the shelf for another 12-month stretch.

While the films on my list might not be the "best" Christmas movies or, in some cases, even considered Christmas movies, they are my Christmas movies. Typically, I just can’t feel right about the holiday season without making my way through each of them at least once. They’ve slowly gelled into my “must-watch” Christmas movie list for various reasons: reminiscence, unavoidable television programming, uniqueness in the face of the typical seasonal film glut, etc.

While there are a handful of classic, well-made staples that would be agreeable to the masses as far as quality is concerned, I think everyone’s list would be different when it comes to this kind of thing. So check out my picks at our new gallery. And as always, feel free to rifle off your holiday favorites in the comments section below.

We'll be back to the normal order of things next week as I close out the year with an assessment of Steven Spielberg's movie portfolio.

For year-round entertainment news and awards season commentary follow @kristapley on Twitter.

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