8 unconventional Christmas movies you can stream right now

A still image from the movie Gremlins of two gremlins arm-wrestling. One wears a Santa Claus hat.
Gremlins (1984)

Are you tired of the cookie-cutter Christmas movies that emerge from hibernation to ring in the silly season each December? We’ve found 8 unconventional Christmas movies you can stream these holidays that break the mould of the bog-standard Hallmark feature.  

Let’s face it: Christmas movies are often trope-laden, predictable, and cheesier than a Frenchman’s réfrigérateur.  

It’s no wonder the masses are turning to ‘non-Christmas’ Christmas movies for some reprieve. 

We’ve found something for everyone. From horror to neo-noir, black comedy to musical comedy, these movies all have something to do with Christmas, without harping on about it too much.

Gremlins (1984)

When a teenage boy is given a strange pet for Christmas, he accidentally breaks the only three rules for caring for this seemingly cute, fuzzy, and innocent little creature. This leads to a wave of chaos spreading throughout his fictional, northeast American town, in the form of cheeky, evil, and grotesque green gremlins. 

Good for: fans of over-the-top, very 80s special effects and a few cheap thrills. This is a Christmas movie for the whole family. 

Where to watch Gremlins

You can stream Gremlins on Binge, Foxtel Now, Amazon Prime, Apple TV, and Stan.

The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993) 

Jack Skellington hides behind a Christmas Town candy cane pole, looking skeptically at the new world he has uncovered.
The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993) 

The king of Halloween Town, Jack Skellington, stumbles upon Christmas Town. Enamoured by the customs of those in Christmas Town, he endeavours to bring this new tradition to the citizens of Halloween Town, much to the confusion of its inhabitants.   

Good for: those who want something different from their Christmas viewing, fans of stop-motion animation, fans of musicals, and Tim Burton aficionados. This is one for the whole family, but will easily entertain adults. 

Where to watch The Nightmare Before Christmas

You can stream The Nightmare Before Christmas on Amazon Prime, Apple TV, and Disney+.

Kiss Kiss Bang Bang (2005) 

Kiss Kiss Bang Bang (2005) 

A New York-based thief accidentally lands himself a role in a Hollywood production while on the run and is sent across the country to shadow a detective for the film. Before long, he winds up in the middle of a real-life murder investigation, alongside a dry-witted detective and a ‘dream-girl’ type he knows from school. 

Good for: those with a bit of a darker sense of humour, those who like crime mysteries, and action movies. This is a Christmas movie for adults that don’t like conventional Christmas movies.

Where to watch Kiss Kiss Bang Bang

You can stream Kiss Kiss Bang Bang on Stan, Apple TV, and Amazon Prime.

In Bruges (2008)

In Bruges (2008)

Two London-based hitmen, Ray and Ken, are instructed by their boss to lay low, after a job went wrong, in Bruges (it’s in Belgium). When word comes in from the boss, the pair must decide between their friendship and the demands of their line of work. 

Good for: those who want a film that’ll have them laughing and crying, fans of action movies, and those with a darker sense of humour. Warning: it gets more than a little violent. So, if you’re looking for something to watch with the kids, In Bruges isn’t it. 

Where to watch In Bruges

You can stream In Bruges (2008) on Binge, Foxtel Now, Amazon Prime, Apple TV, and Netflix.

Rare Exports: A Christmas Tale (2010)

Rare Exports: A Christmas Tale (2010)

Deep beneath the Korvatunturi mountains in Finland, the truth behind Santa Claus is unearthed. Taking inspiration from Joulupukki, a figure in Finnish folklore, a father and son set out to recapture the monster after it wreaks havoc on the townsfolk. 

Good for: fans of horror-comedy, folklore fanatics, and people who want something totally different out of their holiday viewing. 

Where to watch Rare Exports: A Christmas Tale

You can stream rare Exports: A Christmas Tale on Apple TV and Amazon Prime.

A Sunburnt Christmas (2020)

A Sunburnt Christmas (2020)

A family living on a farm in the Australian outback – devastated by drought – have their lives turned upside down when a fugitive dressed as Santa arrives by crashing a van full of toys onto their property. 

Good for: those that want a good laugh, fans of Australian cinema. 

Where to watch A Sunburnt Christmas

You can stream A Sunburnt Christmas on Stan.

Bad Santa (2003)

Bad Santa (2003)

Heavy-drinking conman, Willie, and his sidekick, Marcus, dress up as Santa and his Little Helper to rob department stores on Christmas. But when Willie meets a kid who believes he’s the real Santa, he is given an opportunity to change his ways. 

Good for: fans of Billy Bob Thornton, those who want some cheap laughs in their Christmas movies, and people who believe Christmas movies should be more on the naughty, rather than nice side. 

Where to watch Bad Santa

You can stream Bad Santa on Stan, Paramount+, Amazon Prime, and Apple TV.

Black Christmas (1974)

Black Christmas (1974)

A group of sorority sisters begin receiving strange and threatening phone calls, which they pass off as crude pranks. But when they start to go missing or turn up dead, they resolve to find the mystery stalker and bring them to justice. 

Good for: fans of slasher films, those looking for a Christmas-themed thrill, and people who don’t mind a bit of old-school filmmaking gold. 

Where to watch Black Christmas (1974)

You can stream Black Christmas (1974) for free on Plex.

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