Are you looking for a fun way to ring in the new year? A movie marathon provides safe, low-key entertainment for revelers of every age.

If your celebration includes both adults and children, you can set up two different movies, space permitting. Just select two or three films, and switch over to TV at midnight to watch the ball drop. Here are a few ideas to make things festive:

  • Begin with some vintage cartoons, such as Daffy Duck, Woody Woodpecker or Popeye the Sailor Man.
  • Schedule intermissions for stretching breaks and visits to the snack bar.
  • Have the kids "usher" you to your seats with a flashlight.
  • Darken the room and have some pillows or bean bag chairs.
  • Have lots of snacks, including some new popcorn recipes from The Popcorn Board.
  • Can't decide on a movie? Put all the titles in a bowl and take turns choosing.

For Grownups:

Strange Days (1995) A dark drama of a future New Year's tainted by cyber-nightmares and murder.

Oceans Eleven (1960) The Rat Pack heists Vegas.

About a Boy (2002) Hugh Grant helps an awkward boy--and his sorry self.

The Gold Rush (1925) Chaplin's Tramp finds adventure and romance in the Yukon.

When Harry Met Sally (1989) Billy Crystal duels with Meg Ryan in this classic romcom.

Sunset Boulevard (1950) Billy Wilder's stunning tour of Hollywood's dark side, starring the incomparable Gloria Swanson.

The Godfather Part II (1974) At a party in Havana, Michael tells Fredo he knows it was him in this epic saga of the Corleone family.

The Poseidon Adventure (1972) An all-star cast navigates a capsized liner in this grand disaster pic.

Trading Places (1983) Eddie Murphy and Dan Aykroyd outwit Wall Street sharks and corner the orange juice market.

Boogie Nights (1997) The rise and fall of Dirk Diggler and the "classy" side of the adult film industry.

End of Days (1999) Arnold saves the world from the devil on New Year's Eve.

While You Were Sleeping (1995) Early Sandra Bullock romantic comedy finds her posing as the fiancé of a comatose young man, then falling for his brother.

Bridget Jones's Diary (2001) Renée Zellweger shines as the zany, zaftig Bridget, wooed by caddish Hugh Grant and stuffy Colin Firth.

The Apartment (1960) Jack Lemmon loans out his pad to lecherous executives in an attempt to climb the corporate ladder, then finds his bottom line.

For the whole Family:

Bell, Book and Candle (1958) A witch (Kim Novak) casts a love spell on a publisher (Jimmy Stewart) in order to thwart his fiancé, an old enemy. (see video clip below)

Honey, I Shrunk the Kids (1990) Tiny teens must fight tiny dangers after their scientist father accidentally shrinks them.

Beverly Hills Chihuahua (2008) Spoiled chihuahua Chloe gets lost while on vacation in Mexico and gets help from a world-weary German shepherd.

The Prince of Egypt (1999) Beautifully animated musical of Moses leading the children of Israel out of Egypt.

The Parent Trap (1961) Hayley Mills plays twins who have been raised separately due to their parents' divorce, and meet by chance at summer camp. (There's also a 1998 remake with young Lindsay Lohan that is every bit as fun as the original.)

Jumanji (1995) Alan (Robin Williams) is stuck in a jungle-themed board game for 26 years, until two kids find the game and start playing, which releases Alan, along with dangerous wild animals.

Mary Poppins (1964) Timeless Disney musical starring Dick Van Dyke and Julie Andrews, with great songs, dancing and seamless touches of animation.

Up (2009) From Pixar, a delightful tale of elderly Carl, who wants to fulfill a lifelong dream of seeing South America and attaches hundreds of balloons to his house to make it fly away.

Karate Kid (1984) High school senior Daniel and his mother move to California from New Jersey, where he doesn't fit in and must learn karate to defend himself against bullies.

Written by Lisa on December 18, 2012


angela on December 19, 2012


Great list, Lisa! Bell, Book and Candle will definitely be part of my next movie night!

Lisa on December 19, 2012


The eyebrows alone make it worth watching.

Leigh Ann on January 2, 2013


Sure love watching a fun movie on a cold, January night--gotta catch the ones you've listed that I've somehow missed...now only if it would snow ten feet deep, (once I have a couple to watch)...something to look forward to: watching 'Bridget Jones's Diary', drinking hot chocolate, nibbling on warm cookies & munching on popcorn! Thanks for the great blog, Lisa! Happy New Year

Anonymous on August 14, 2014


Nice blog. New year's eve and Christmas party falls back to back and this is the time people enjoy the most because there falls a series of holidays. Parties are a medium of fun and enjoy the holidays and a get together to know each other. You cannot take time to enjoy or to mix with different people in your busy schedule. So, this is the time to enjoy. You can watch movie or throw a party. For watching movies nice collection of movie have been given in this article. I like reading you blog.

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