Christmas Movies: Why are they all the same?

By: Young Kim

It’s the merriest time of the year and families can expect classic festive movies that bring a sense of nostalgia to everyone. Some cult classics such as Elf, Harry Potter, Rudolph the Redness Reindeer, and the Nightmare Before Christmas are a small sample of the genre filled with thousands of movies. But there is a select number of Christmas themed movies that seem too similar. These movies all have the common theme of being created by the Hallmark Channel.

They all involve the same plot with the same cheesy moments that seem to symbolize the ideal Christmas movie for families to watch as they ALL have the same happy ending with two love interests living happily ever after. But why? Why are these movies practically copy and pasted with minimal differences? Well, it turns out that that is the whole point. These Hallmark Movies serve as a symbolical measure of tradition because they can be easily expected around Christmas time. In a world constantly changing, it can be relaxing to see that some things do not change no matter what global disasters hit. They provide slight changes that are easy to digest as the audience and therefore provide a sense of tradition. These movies pride themselves on this fact as they reproduce movies with parallel characters, story, and even setting. 

Another reason why they’re so successful? These movies are actually widely viewed during and even after the seasonal times. They provide Hallmark with a significant boost in viewership which therefore brings profits. Around the holidays they are known to be ranked in the top ten most viewed channels on cable, which is no small feat. No need to change the story and small production value needed to produce a Hallmark Christmas movie equates to a profit margin even Ebenezor Scrooge would desire. 

Christmas movies played on Hallmark are both loved and hated within every household. To some the basic nature in which Hallmark movies mirror one another reminds them of a seasonal time to be celebrated with family while others may believe in its shallow plot and sometimes borderline absurdity in how the conflict is resolved for the sake of having a happy ending. Love it or hate it, it would be a convincing argument to state that Hallmark Christmas movies have molded themselves into a Christmas tradition.

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