Throwback Christmas Classics BY TIM AHRENS | STILLWATER STYLE T here are plenty of movie options to go around leading up to Christmas. CBS is airing classic animated films like “Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer,” “Frosty the Snowman” and “Santa Claus is Comin’ to Town.” The Hallmark Channel and Freeform (it will always be ABC Family to me) air their month plus of IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE (1946) Starring: Jimmy Stewart, Donna Reed, Lionel Barrymore Synopsis: An angel is sent from Heaven to help a desperately frustrated businessman by showing him what life would have been like if he had never existed. Arguably the best Christmas movie (and rightfully so given its five Oscar nominations), “It’s a Wonderful Life” is a timeless classic that lives on – and holds up – as the years go by. I can’t remember the last time I saw it was on TV and opted to find something else. 28 Stillwater Style | WINTER 2018 Christmas movies leading up to Dec. 25. And it’s an easy decision for Hollywood to keep making films centered on the holiday; they’re bound to bring in a modest profit at worst. But sometimes, you just can’t beat the classics. A few stand out from the rest. MIRACLE ON 34TH STREET (1947) Starring: Edmund Gwenn, Maureen O’Hara, John Payne Synopsis: When a nice old man who claims to be Santa Claus is institutionalized as insane, a young lawyer decides to defend him by arguing in court that he is the real thing. There are a lot of Christmas movies that have featured the real Kris Kringle (whether intentionally or on bad circumstance) interacting with people in everyday life, but none of them come close to this one. “Miracle on 34th Street” is full of the pure Christmas magic that makes the season so special.