Close Out the Decade With the Best Holiday Movies of the Last 10 Years

As the 2010s come to an end, it’s hard not to feel a little nostalgic. There have been a lot of incredible theatrical releases over the past ten years, ranging from big-budget Marvel flicks to surprise independent hits like Oscar-winner Moonlight.

'A Bad Moms Christmas' premiere
‘A Bad Moms Christmas’ premiere | Rich Fury/Getty Images

However, it hasn’t been the best time for Christmas movies, especially as far as the beginning of the decade is concerned. In fact, every entry on this list is from the past five years. Regardless, here’s a look at the four best holiday films of the 2010s.

‘Krampus’ (2015)

First of all, if the title doesn’t make it clear, this is a horror film. Christmas horror flicks have been a tradition dating decades, but they don’t always hit just right. What sets Krampus apart is that — like many of the best horror movies — it’s based on actual lore.

So the story told in the film about a demonic German spirit dating back to ancient time is an actual legend, making it even creepier. Add in great performances by Adam Scott, Toni Collette, and more, and you have a fun, yet actually scary movie to watch by the fire.

‘The Night Before’ (2015)

Yes, this is a Christmas comedy with a romantic twist. But we wouldn’t exactly call it a rom-com, as most films from the mind of Seth Rogen and his long-time writing partner, Evan Goldberg, tend to air more on the side of humorous than sweet. Still, there is a heartwarming tone at the center of it all.

Rogen, as per usual, also stars, alongside Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Anthony Mackie as three friends who spend every Christmas Eve in their hometown of New York City getting completely off their faces. The flick features some of the usual faces from these kinds of comedies, as well as a few surprises. No, it’s not groundbreaking, but it is a generally good time.

‘Carol’ (2015)

No, we didn’t want to include another movie from 2015 in here. But Carol is undeniable. It’s not only one of the best Christmas movies of the past decade, but one of the best movies period. It was an awards season darling, though it failed to win at any of the major ceremonies.

This dramatic romance was a long time coming, as its central romance between two women made it difficult to get financing.. We don’t want to spoil anything for you, because if you haven’t seen it, this is the kind of movie you want to go in knowing very little. But suffice it to say there’s a reason it’s become a universal favorite.

‘A Bad Moms Christmas’ (2017)

Bad Moms was a seriously entertaining comedy starring Mila Kunis, Kristen Bell, and Kathryn Hahn. The three women showed that the typical mothers you see in comedies don’t need to be the perfect housewives who berate their husbands — they can (shocker!) be flawed individuals just doing their best, and it’s still funny.

Given the box-office success of the first, the studio wasted no time in turning around and churning out a sequel. A Bad Moms Christmas was, like its predecessor, highly entertaining, though certainly not to the same degree. Still, it’s clearly doing well enough, as there’s another sequel in development.

Runner-ups: A Very Murray Christmas (2015), Office Christmas Party (2016), and Last Christmas (2019)