The holidays are all about reconnecting with the family and spending time with the people in your lives who mean the most to you. And what better way to celebrate the joy of the holidays and connecting with family than through crime films and television shows? While crime is a way of life for the characters of these crime films and crime TV series, nothing is more important than family.
One of the most famous crime films of all time, The Godfather movie broke box office records and became the highest-grossing film of 1972. It also won multiple Academy Awards and Golden Globes. The Godfather also so happens to be a story about family. Marlon Brando stars as Vito Corleone, the Don of the Corleone crime family, and Al Pacino stars as Michael Corleone, the prodigal son who returns home for his sister’s wedding. Michael Corleone wants nothing to do with the family crime business, but being back home, he gets looped back into the lifestyle. This is the story of a descent into a life of crime, but it’s also the story of family coming together and being there for one another. Perfect for the holidays.
The story of The Sopranos was first imagined as a show about a mobster who goes to therapy because he’s having problems with his mother. But since its first conception, the crime TV show has become so much more. The Sopranos is a critically-acclaimed show that’s widely regarded by many to be one of the best television programs of all time. It follows the story of Tony Soprano, the leader of the Soprano crime family. Over the course of six seasons, viewers come to sympathize with Tony as he attempts to juggle his family life with his life as the leader of a large criminal organization.
Godfather of Harlem
This is the story of Bumpy Johnson, a crime boss in Harlem who returns to his home after ten years in prison. But the Harlem he comes back to is not the same place he left behind. The streets are now controlled by the Italian mob, and Bumpy has to take on the Genovese crime family to capture control of the neighborhood he once ruled. The crime TV series features real-life historical figures such as Malcolm X and Bumpy Johnson himself. The Genovese family is also a real crime family that is still active in New York and New Jersey to this day.
What would you do if someone in your family went missing? That’s what happens in the Netflix miniseries Clickbait. The Brewer family is horrified to discover that a member of their family, Nick Brewer, is missing. The next time they see him, he’s in a viral video that claims Nick will die once the video reaches 5 million views. Nick’s wife and sister want to find a way to rescue him, but Nick might not exactly be the man they thought he was.
Martin Scorsese’s 1990 American biographical crime film Goodfellas is another classic that’s perfect for holiday viewing. Based on the 1985 nonfiction book Wiseguy: Life in a Mafia Family by Nicholas Pileggi, Goodfellas follows the rise and fall of mob associate Henry Hill and his family and his friends, whom he protects like family. It starts in 1955, when Hill first becomes involved with the Gambino crime family. The film follows Hill’s rise in the ranks, and goes all the way up to 1980. Regarded by many critics as the best film of 1990, Goodfellas is another crime film that’s a wonderful addition to your holiday movie lineup.
This holiday watch list wouldn’t be complete without the Christmas classic Home Alone. Featuring Macaulay Culkin, Joe Pesci, and Daniel Stern, Home Alone follows a young boy who is accidentally left behind when his family takes a trip abroad for the holidays. Stuck at home with little to do, Kevin (Macaulay Culkin) must wait for his family’s return in his Chicago home. That is until thieves try to break into his house, forcing Kevin to defend himself in creative (and pretty funny) ways.