11 Non-Traditional Christmas Movies That Still Spark The Holiday Mood

Trading Places

Are you searching for some non-Christmas movies that make perfect Christmas films? You've got company. Someone recently asked, “What are your favorite unconventional Christmas movies?” Here are the top-voted responses.

1. The Ice Harvest (2005)

Oliver Platt and John Cusack in The Ice Harvest (2005)
Image Credit: Focus Features.

The Ice Harvest is a neo-noir black comedy following a mafia lawyer, Charlie Arglist (John Cusack), and pornographer Vic Cavanaugh (Billy Bob Thornton), on Christmas Eve stealing $2 million from their mob boss, Bill Guerrard (Randy Quaid).

However, a terrible ice storm stops their plans to flee town. Unfortunately, trouble brews the longer they stay with the cash. The film also stars Connie Nielsen and Oliver Platt. 

2. Reindeer Games (2000)

Reindeer Games (2000)
Image Credit: Miramax Films.

Reindeer Games is an action crime thriller following Rudy Duncan (Ben Affleck), a newly-released prisoner hoping to start a new life with a prison pen pal and girl of his dreams, Ashley (Charlize Theron). However, her hot-headed brother Gabriel (Gary Sinise) has alternative plans and demands that Rudy assist him and his crew in robbing a casino where Rudy once worked. 

3. Better Off Dead (1985)

Image Credit: Warner Bros.

Better Off Dead is a surrealist black comedy centering around Lane Myer (John Cusack), a suicidal teen with a bizarre family and an unhealthy obsession with his girlfriend, Beth (Amanda Wyss). After Beth dumps Lane for a detestable bully, he resorts to killing himself. However, he ultimately befriends a French foreign exchange student and agrees to a race on the ski slopes against Beth's new boyfriend. 

4. Go (1999)

Go (1999)
Image Credit: Sony Pictures Releasing.

Go is a crime comedy following a grocery cashier (Desmond Askew) who sells drugs from his cash register. One night, two soap opera legends, Adam (Scott Wolf) and Zack (Jay Mohr), come to buy Ecstacy from him on Christmas Eve but are assisted by Ronna (Sarah Polley) instead. She's covering his shift but decides to sell to them without realizing they are snitches for narcotics officer Burke (William Fichtner).

5. We're No Angels (1955)

were no angels
Image Credit: Paramount Pictures.

We're No Angels is a Christmas comedy following three convict escapees (Humphrey Bogart, Peter Ustinov, and Aldo Ray). After breaking out of Devil's Island, they flee to a nearby town and hide in a shop run by a family. Initially, they plan on robbing the store. However, after enjoying a Christmas dinner together, the convicts have a change of heart and carry out a few good deeds for the family instead. 

6. Ghostbusters II (1989)

Rick Moranis in Ghostbusters II
Image Credit: Columbia Pictures.

Ghostbusters II is a supernatural comedy sequel set during Christmas, five years after the events of the first movie. Unfortunately, the Ghostbusters go out of business after a lawsuit for damages accrued during the battle with the deity Gozer. However, after a new paranormal event threatens the world, the team reunites to bust some ghosts. It stars Bill Murray, Dan Aykroyd, and Ernie Hudson.

7. L.A. Confidential (1997)

L.A. Confidential (1997)
Image Credit: Warner Bros.

L.A. Confidential is a neo-noir crime movie following a group of L.A.P.D. officers in 1953. Each officer has their own agenda for tackling Hollywood corruption surrounding an unsolved murder known as “The Bloody Christmas case.” The film stars Guy Pearce, Kim Basinger, Russell Crowe, Danny DeVito, and Kevin Spacey.

8. The Apartment (1960)

Image Credit: United Artists.

The Apartment is a romantic comedy-drama set in New York City at Christmas. It follows an insurance clerk, Calvin (Jack Lemmon), who, hoping to climb the corporate ladder, lets his senior coworkers use his Upper West Side apartment to conduct extramarital affairs. He fancies an elevator operator (Shirley MacLaine) but is unaware she is having an affair with his boss (Fred MacMurray).

9. Meet Me in St. Louis (1944)

Meet Me in St. Louis
Photo Credit: MGM.

Meet Me in St. Louis is a romantic Christmas musical classic centering around four sisters (one of whom is Judy Garland) on the cusp of the 1904 St. Louis World's Fair. It highlights the sisters' education in the world's ways, including learning about life and love, courtesy of the quintessential boy next door. 

10. The Irishman (2019)

The Irishman Robert De Niro, Al Pacino, Ray Romano
Image Credit: Netflix.

Martin Scorsese's The Irishman is an epic gangster movie based on Charles Brandt's 2004 nonfiction book I Heard You Paint Houses. It follows a truck driver (Robert De Niro) who becomes a hitman involved with mobster Russell Bufalino (Pesci), his crime family, and his time working for the powerful Teamster Jimmy Hoffa (Al Pacino).

11. Trading Places (1983)

Trading Places Movie (1983)
Image Credit: Paramount Pictures.

The 1983 comedy, starring Dan Aykroyd, Eddie Murphy,  and Jamie Lee Curtis, is a modern-day interpretation of The Prince and the Pauper. The film takes place during the holiday season and centers around a wealthy commodities broker (Aykroyd) who loses everything during the holiday season while realizing his job, house, and life have all somehow been given to a down-on-his-luck con artist (Murphy). 

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Jake Valentine

Author: Jake Valentine

Title: Journalist

Expertise: Video Games, Pop Culture, Entertainment


Jake Valentine is a journalist and editor who has been covering the video game and entertainment industries for over two decades. At Wealth of Geeks, he is the company's Operations Manager and helps oversee the content published on a daily basis. He is best known for his knowledge and expertise in World of Warcraft, as well as his love for food, beer, and pop culture.