30 Feminist Christmas Movies, Ranked

11 of 31

Santa Claus is Comin’ to Town, Screencap via Rankin/Bass Productions

Santa Claus is Comin’ to Town

This Claymation classic follows Kris Kringle, before he was Santa Claus. After being raised by elves, Kris volunteers to bring their toys to the nearby village of Sombertown. But when he gets there, he is told that all toys have been outlawed by the Burgermeister. As Kris finds this rule cruel, he figures out ways to sneak toys to the children of Sombertown, such as hiding them in stockings they’ve hung up to dry. Throughout the movie, Kris is chased by the Burgermeister, but he continues to try to spread cheer and holiday spirit.

The Good

  • Kris Kringle as a character is devoid of the toxically masculine attributes that one would normally find in a male protagonist hero, even in a kids’ movie. He’s kind, gentle, generous, and emotional, giving a great example of a sensitive male hero.
  • Jessica, at first, shows personality and interior life by objecting to Kris’s toy distribution, for the sake of the children’s safety. She also has a job, teaching, which is kind of a big deal for a kids’ Christmas story.
  • The fight against the Burgermeister is a fight against patriarchy. The Burgermeister seeks to destroy all the toys and make sure his subjects, the working poor, are miserable. Kris and Jessica, a man and a woman, team up to bring joy and happiness to the masses. It’s an allegory. Don’t @ me.

The Bad

  • Other than her profession, Jessica isn’t characterized very well. We don’t spend much time with her, and her main purpose is to fall in love with Kris and become Mrs. Claus.

The Ugly

  • So, Jessica decides she wants to marry Kris. Cool. But she had a job that she ostensibly cared about, and now she’s giving that up to live in the North Pole and support Santa’s career as a toymaker and philanthropist? What does Mrs. Claus do all day?