If you’ve been reading Substream for a while, you may have seen our weekly Take Five column, where we highlight our five favorite songs from the previous week. For the month of December, we wanted to highlight of our love and appreciation of the holidays by doing something special for our readers. So for this month, we present you with a special variation of Take Five with the Holiday Five.

We’ve gotten together with some amazing artists and music industry people to chat about their five favorite holiday movies. This will be more than a weekly column, so be sure to check in every day to see who joined us to talk about their favorite holiday movies.

Our sixth piece this month comes from Victims of Circumstance, who are gearing up to release their new album, Five, on January 24th, 2020. Head below to see what singer/guitarist Mike Smyth had to say about his five favorite holiday films!


Planes, Trains and Automobiles – Thanksgiving is where the Holidays begin so only this classic Thanksgiving comedy can top my list of best holiday movies. Two comic legends, Steve Martin and the late John Candy, play star crossed travelers trying to make it home for Thanksgiving. It has everything a holiday film should: plenty of side-splitting laughter and a heartfelt ending to kickoff the holidays.

Love Actually – [This] quickly became one of my favorite holiday staples. Love conquers all when an ensemble cast play characters ranging from wait staff to writers to rock stars and even the Prime Minister of England. The film shows how people from all walks of life spend Christmas and how their lives intertwine.

The Family Stone – An all star cast with Diane Keaton, Luke Wilson and Rachel McAdmas playing members of a diverse and vaguely bohemian family.  Chaos ensues when the favorite son brings his very conservative girlfriend, portrayed by Sarah Jessica Parker, home for a very wholesome, sometimes heartbreaking, though still hilarious Christmas.

Elf – It’s hard for me to let the Christmas season pass without watching Elf at least once. Buddy the Elf spends his first Christmas in New York in an ill conceived plan to redeem his biological father from his callous nature with nothing more than pure Christmas spirit. Will Ferrell and film legend James Caan lead a well rounded cast through a hilarious and heart-warming Christmas adventure that ultimately proves Santa is real after all…wait was that Tyrion?

National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation – Finally, my holiday season is never complete without at least one viewing of National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation. Join Clark, Ellen, Audrey and Russ at the Griswold family home as they spend a chaotic Christmas hosting their extended family including everyone’s favorite Cousin Eddie.  Surprised to see me, Clark? Watch Clark Griswold take on Christmas in the most hilarious holiday film of all time.