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Our Top 5 Christmas Movie Effects ❄️

It’s Christmas time once again! 🎄The magical time of year when many of us enjoy watching all of our favourite festive films. However, when it comes to warm, feel-good Christmas films visual effects are not normally the first thing that comes to mind…

Ellen Sanders

- 3 min read

The lack of visual effects in Christmas films is mainly because of the smaller budgets these films have. This is due to limited audiences or at best the films limited time of significance. Combine that with the fact that Christmas films as a genre have created the feeling in our minds that we don’t really care how ludicrous or cheesy the film is, we still watch it because that’s what Christmas is all about! That being said, we have created a list of our top 5 favourite visual effects in Christmas films. Read on to avoid being put on the naughty list… 

5. Die Hard (1988)

Ignoring the battle of whether Die Hard is a Christmas film or isn’t, and let’s face it we all want to watch it at Christmas! Even though it’s not the most festive of films, Die Hard is a great example of how well clever practical and visual effects can blend together. This film is a classic and the action scenes are packed full of effects, making this a great film to watch on a chilly night in.

McTiernan, J. (1988) Die Hard [Film] Twentieth Century Fox. Image available here.

Where to watch: Disney+

4. How the Grinch Stole Christmas (2000)

Coming in at fourth place is How the Grinch Stole Christmas. The Grinch has become somewhat of a Christmas classic. While actor Jim Carrey in the incredible makeup and costume is the true star of this film, look closer and you will see some very well put together special effects that make up fictional town ‘Whoville’. Made up of cartoony and high stylised sets, CGI was used here to create an amazing fantasy land that is a joy to watch. A perfect Christmas film for the whole family.

Howard, R. (2000) How the Grinch Stole Christmas [Film] Universal Pictures. Image available here.

Where to watch: NOW

3. Jack Frost (1998)

Up next is fantasy comedy Jack Frost. Here, the titular character, a biter, aging rocker meets a tragic end in a car accident on Christmas Day. A year later, Jacks son plays a song on his old man’s harmonica and brings him back to life – in the form of a snowman. Mainly remembered for its questionable CGI, Jack Frost still remains a favourite of ours, Christmas is all about nostalgia after all!

Miller, T. (1998) Jack Frost [Film] Warner Bros. Image available here.

Where to watch: Netflix

2. A Christmas Carol (2009)

In second place is traditional holiday tale – A Christmas Carol. Featuring the heart-warming story of a spiteful old man who, after visits from four ghosts. Each representing, the past, the present and the future, has a change of heart and prompt him to become a better man. Whilst we realize this is an animated film, we believe it’s earnt it’s place on the list due to the film’s significant achievements in Motion Capture. Always a pleasure to watch, this film holds up as one of the best adaptations of the classic Dickens novel.

Zemeckis, R. (2009) A Christmas Carol [Film] Walt Disney Pictures. Image available here.

Where to watch: Disney+

1. The Polar Express (2004)

Here in first place, we have The Polar Express! This film tells the story of a young boy who boards a train and embarks on a wonderful journey to the North Pole to meet Father Christmas. The Polar Express was the very first feature film to be completely shot through ‘Performance Capture’. This technique allows an actor to become a human blueprint as a multitude of computerized cameras capture every 360-degree movement down to the twitch of a finger, creating a hyper-realistic animation that might make you feel like you’re on a Christmas journey of your own.

Zemeckis, R. (2004) The Polar Express [Film] Castle Rock Entertainment. Image available here.

Where to watch: NOW

Here at Proline, we know the importance VFX plays in post-production. From creating festive characters to snowy scenes, Proline offers the latest tech and high-powered workstations, purpose built to handle these complex and intricate workloads. Find out more about our products here.

To discuss with one of our experts or to place an order for your business, check out our Contact Us page, where we can help you find your perfect workstation.

Ellen Sanders

- 3 min read

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