"Scrooge" is the 1951 black-and-white British classic starring the great Alastair Sim as a seemingly unredeemable Ebenezer Scrooge. Favorite moment: When Scrooge, freshly redeemed, hesitates before entering his nephew's Christmas party. He looks to the young maid for encouragement, which she gives with a wordless nod. He then nods and smiles. Pass the tissues.
"How the Grinch Stole Christmas!" is the 1966 Dr. Seuss adaptation by Chuck Jones, narrated by "Frankenstein" star Boris Karloff. Favorite moment: When the Grinch steals the long, thin candy canes from the sleeping Who children. It's a brain-twistingly evil moment.
"A Charlie Brown Christmas" is the 1965 special based on Charles M. Schulz's comic-strip phenomenon "Peanuts." Favorite moment: Of course, how can it be anything other than when the "Peanuts" gang suddenly launches into a peculiar, albeit heartwarming, "Loo loo loo" version of "Hark the Herald Angels Sing"?
"Santa Claus" is the 1959 Mexican Christmas flick made by the same people behind the Mexican vampire and wrestling flicks. Favorite moment: The amazing moral tug-of-war between little Lupita and the evil doll who tempts her to steal. Our Lupita holds her ground: "Stealing is evil! I don't want to be evil!"
"Santa Claus Conquers the Martians" is the 1966 low-budget color flick in which green-skinned Martians kidnap Santa in a bid to cheer up their morose (and likewise green-skinned) children, a group that includes young Pia Zadora. Favorite moment: The rockin' theme song: "S-A-N-T-A, C-L-A-U-S, hooray for Santy Claus!" It sounds like a song from a Frankie-and-Annette "beach party" flick.
"Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer" is Rankin-Bass' 1964 puppet-animation adaptation of the Gene Autry song. Favorite moment: It's a subtle moment, one you'd have to keep a sharp lookout for. It's when Hermey the Elf (and would-be dentist) says, "It's all settled," and abruptly turns out the bedroom light. Why is that my favorite? Watch it and see if you don't agree that Hermey has not been listening to Rudolph. He's off in his own, little, bicuspid-yanking world.
And now, as "Lois Lane" and "Captain Marvel" artist Kurt Schaffenberger used to say every year around this time, "I see the holidays have us by the throat again."