Yule be like a kid on Christmas morning with the holiday-themed bounty of Disney+

Derek Arbogast
·7 min read

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If we can't all be together, at least we can gather vicariously through the Muppets. (Photo: Disney)
If we can't all be together, at least we can gather vicariously through the Muppets. (Photo: Disney)

Never has the classic tune “We Need a Little Christmas” been more apropos than in 2020, the Grinch-iest of years. In fact, we need a lot of Christmas...right this very minute. How lucky, then, that Mickey and Co. are in the house this holiday season—around 75 million houses, in fact—thanks to the wonderful-world-of-streaming service that is Disney+.

Amid the thousands of movies, TV series (maybe you’ve heard of The Mandalorian?), and specials spanning Disney’s nearly 100-year history, is a treasure trove of holiday classics—nostalgic and new, live-action and animated, fiction and non-; hallowed, heartfelt, and hilarious; for the old, young, and everyone in between.

That’s just one of the things that makes a Disney+ subscription such a great gift for someone you love. It’s the best company, when we can’t all be together—a holiday-hug in the form of a streaming service. Right now, you can give a whole year of Disney+ for just $70. Thousands of movies and shows, including the warmest, coziest holiday movies and specials.

It’s easy to gift a full year of Disney+ for $70 right here. You’ll just provide an email address for your recipient and choose a delivery date (you can also add a ntoe). On that date, Disney+ will email your recipient with instructions on how to redeem the gift subscription (after the year is up, they can renew with their own payment info). Gift subscriptions can only be redeemed by new Disney+ subscribers—so this is a gift for folks who have yet to try the service.

And what about you? Is Disney+ lighting up your holiday season? If you haven’t yet subscribed, treat your family to a subscription today. You can start streaming Disney+ for just $7 a month.

To quote (okay, slightly paraphrase) Santa: On Donald and Goofy and Mickey and Minnie! Dumbo and Simba and Pluto and Flicka! Huey, Dewey, and Louie! Ariel, Merida, Moana, and Anna!...and too many others to name.

Below are just a few of the cozy seasonal classics you—and your loved ones—can enjoy right away on Disney+.

Miracle on 34th Street (1947)

Yes, Virginia, this movie does, in fact, rule: 'Miracle on 34th Street. (Photo: Disney)
Yes, Virginia, this movie does, in fact, rule: 'Miracle on 34th Street. (Photo: Disney)

If not the first, certainly the greatest film to ever star a department store, this Macy’s-set classic features an embarrassment of riches: the unforgettable Maureen O’Hara, a nine-year-old Natalie Wood in her first major role, and Edmund Gwenn, who embodied a version of Santa that became the definitive take for generations upon generations (and won a Best Actor Oscar in the process).

Decorating Disney: Holiday Magic (2017)

Whoopi reveals all the bells and whistles (and pyrotechnics and baubles and beauty) in 'Decorating Disney: Holiday Magic.' (Photo: Disney)
Whoopi reveals all the bells and whistles (and pyrotechnics and baubles and beauty) in 'Decorating Disney: Holiday Magic.' (Photo: Disney)

Did you know that Disney World is adorned with 1,300 Christmas trees during holiday season? That the Magic Kingdom features a Mickey made of 30,000 poinsettias? That 20,000 pounds of fake snow are dumped on Sleeping Beauty’s castle, while Disneyland’s Christmas tree is 60 feet tall, featuring 2,000 ornaments, 812 bows and 1.4 miles of ribbon. Intrigued? Then check out this eye-opening special wherein Whoopi Goldberg reveals the manpower and materials behind said magic. And hey, it’s never too soon to start planning your 2021 holiday vacation. Hint, hint...

The Muppet Christmas Carol (1992)

No humbuggery here: Miss Piggy, Kermit, and the gang sing the praises of Xmas  in the Muppet Christmas Carol. (Photo: Disney)
No humbuggery here: Miss Piggy, Kermit, and the gang sing the praises of Xmas in the Muppet Christmas Carol. (Photo: Disney)

In this beautiful, technically amazing take on Dickens’ classic, Michael Caine devours the screen, and our hearts, as Ebenezer Scrooge with some help from Kermit, Waldorf, The Great Gonzo, Miss Piggy, Fozzie, and the gang, who bring some unexpected, inimitable beauty to the performance of a handful of timeless carols.

The Christmas Star (1986)

Before he played Santa in Elf, Ed Asner had the look going in  'The Christmas Star.' (Photo: Disney)
Before he played Santa in Elf, Ed Asner had the look going in 'The Christmas Star.' (Photo: Disney)

Ed Asner’s a convicted counterfeiter whose big white beard enables his holiday-time escape from the slammer. When he tries conning two kids into helping him secure his ill-gotten gains in a department store, he finds himself warming to them instead—you know, just like Santa would. (Bonus treat: Costar Fred Gwynne, aka Herman Munster!)

The Santa Clause

Go all-in for Allen with Disney+'s 'Santa Clause' trilogy. (Photo: Disney)
Go all-in for Allen with Disney+'s 'Santa Clause' trilogy. (Photo: Disney)

If your answer to the question “How much Tim Allen is too much Tim Allen?” is “No such thing,” then this trilogy’s for you. In The Santa Clause (1994) Tim’s Scott Calvin mistakenly puts Santa out of action and find himself impersonating—and eventually becoming—him; but what’s the fun in being Father Christmas without a Mrs. Clause? Enter The Santa Clause 2 (2002). Finally, The Santa Clause 3: The Escape Clause (2006) finds Scott/Santa with a family to raise and a nemesis to keep at bay: the diabolical Jack Frost (Martin Short).

I’ll Be Home for Christmas (1998)

Leave out some milk and cookies for Jonathan Taylor Thomas and 'I'll Be Home for Christmas' (Photo: Disney)
Leave out some milk and cookies for Jonathan Taylor Thomas and 'I'll Be Home for Christmas' (Photo: Disney)

If all that Santa Clause-ing didn’t sate your appetite for Home Improvement alumni, try this on: Jonathan Taylor Thomas (remember Randy? It’s Randy!) plays a college kid who finds he (maybe) can’t go home again when he’s stranded in the desert en route to his family for holiday break.

Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmas (1999)

O'Henry would be proud of this mouse-terful take on 'The Gift of the Magi' in 'Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmas' (Photo: Disney)
O'Henry would be proud of this mouse-terful take on 'The Gift of the Magi' in 'Mickey’s Once Upon a Christmas' (Photo: Disney)

It doesn’t get any more classic than this anthology featuring three yuletide tales. “Donald Duck Stuck on Christmas” finds Don, Scrooge McDuck, and the triplets in a tale inspired by William Dean Howells’ short story Christmas Every Day, but which will scream Groundhog Day to the young’uns. In “A Very Goofy Christmas,” the beloved canine (who was Walt’s favorite creation, by the way) and his son, Max, go to great, and greatly ridiculous, lengths to prove to the other that Santa is real. And, well, then there’s “Mickey and Minnie’s Gift of the Magi.” Enough said.

The Simpsons, “Grift of the Magi” (1999)

Zero wise men +  lots of laughs = The Simpsons' 'Grift of the Magi' (Photo: Disney)
Zero wise men + lots of laughs = The Simpsons' 'Grift of the Magi' (Photo: Disney)

Officially, the main plot of this Season 11 gem finds focus group-er Lisa unwittingly responsible for the creation of a malign new toy, but the magic really comes in the form of guest star Gary Coleman as a forlorn security guard who finds love and acceptance on Christmas Day with the gang at Evergreen Terrace, in the process coining a modern-day holiday greeting all his own: “What you talking ‘bout, everyone!”

Richie Rich’s Christmas Wish (1998)

Richie Rich’s Christmas wish is an end to income inequality. Just kidding--it's peace on earth! (Photo: Disney)
Richie Rich’s Christmas wish is an end to income inequality. Just kidding--it's peace on earth! (Photo: Disney)

After ruining his family’s Christmas, everybody’s favorite spoiled brat makes a guilt-ridden wish that he’d never been born…and finds it come true. When he gets a look at that alternate reality, though, he ruefully realizes it’s a wonderful life after all (ahem). The real spike in this egg nog, however, is its crack supporting cast, which includes Eugene Levy, Martin Mull, Lesley Ann Warren, and Kathleen Freeman.

Snowglobe (2007)

Christina Milian imagines a world transformed by the good kind of global warming in 'Snowglobe.' (Photo: Disney)
Christina Milian imagines a world transformed by the good kind of global warming in 'Snowglobe.' (Photo: Disney)

Wunderkind actor and recording artist Christina Milian (who, you may recall, performed "Call Me, Beep Me!," the theme song of the Disney series Kim Possible) plays an unlucky-in-love woman who, with the help of a snowglobe from an admirer, dreams of a world where the Christmas spirit reigns all year round.

DuckTales (1987)

Let Webby Vanderquack, Scrooge McDuck, Louie, Huey, and Dewey brighten up your Xmas wth some 'Ducktales.' (Photo: Disney)
Let Webby Vanderquack, Scrooge McDuck, Louie, Huey, and Dewey brighten up your Xmas wth some 'Ducktales.' (Photo: Disney)

Call this pick Christmas-adjacent because, as it happens, Scrooge McDuck has had a surprisingly complex and interesting history (seriously; check Wikipedia) featuring considerable character development that has made him so much more than an Ebenezer knock-off. Anywho, this series takes him and his three grandnephews on a bunch of adventures which, okay, yeah, tend to involve him trying to find treasure or prevent bad guys from getting at his riches.

One Magic Christmas (1985)

2020 left you badly in need of some magic and some Christmas? Well, Mary Steenburgen and Disney+ have got you covered. (Photo: Disney)
2020 left you badly in need of some magic and some Christmas? Well, Mary Steenburgen and Disney+ have got you covered. (Photo: Disney)

Not the most original premise, to be sure—a harried mom learns from an angel that Christmas isn’t about presents and money and stuff but the people she loves—but when said mom is played by Mary Steenburgen and said angel by the immortal Harry Dean Stanton, well, those are gifts we’re happy to receive any day of the year.

Give yourself the gift of Disney+ for only $7 a month and Gift it to a loved one—delivering an entire year—for just $70.

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