Snow has been a very frequent, very unpleasant visitor in much of the country in the last few weeks. Just yesterday, weather.com reported that the Midwest and South are experiencing the coldest arctic outbreak since the 1990s. So with many schools closed, either because of snow or below freezing temperatures and frostbite risks, I thought some of you may need some snow day movie suggestions. We’ve got you covered.
When an entire town in upstate New York is closed down by an unexpected snowfall, a group of elementary school kids, led by Natalie Brandston (Zena Grey), try to ensure that the schools stay closed by stopping a mechanical snowplow driver by trying to hijack his plow truck. Meanwhile, Natalie’s big brother, Hal (Mark Webber), is using this day to try to win the affections of Claire Bonner (Emmanuelle Chriqui), the most popular girl in his high school, while Hal and Natalie’s father, Tom (Chevy Chase), a TV meteorologist, faces off against a rival for weather coverage of the day’s events.
Dumb & Dumber
A pair of dumb friends, Harry (Jeff Daniels) and Lloyd (Jim Carrey), set out on a cross country trip to return a briefcase full of money to its rightful owner, a beautiful woman named Mary Swanson (Lauren Holly). However, the duo are unaware of a bigger conspiracy involving Mary, the briefcase, and a pair of criminals who are attempting to chase Harry and Lloyd down to steal the briefcase.
In a castle high on top of a hill lives an inventor’s greatest creation — Edward (Johnny Depp), a near-complete person. The creator died before he could finish Edward’s hands; instead, he is left with metal scissors in their place. He has lived alone since the inventor’s death, until a kind lady, Peg (Dianne Wiest), discovers him and welcomes him into her home. At first, everyone welcomes him into the community, but soon things begin to take a change for the worst.
March of the Penguins
Each winter, alone in the pitiless ice deserts of Antarctica, deep in the most inhospitable terrain on Earth, a truly remarkable journey takes place as it has done for millennia. Emperor penguins in the thousands abandon the deep blue security of their ocean home and clamber onto the frozen ice to begin their long journey into a region so bleak, so extreme, it supports no other wildlife at this time of year. In single file, the penguins march blinded by blizzards, buffeted by gale force winds. Guided by instinct, by the otherworldly radiance of the Southern Cross, they head unerringly for their traditional breeding ground where — after a ritual courtship of intricate dances and delicate maneuvering, accompanied by a cacophony of ecstatic song — they will pair off into monogamous couples and mate.
Back when the Earth was being overrun by glaciers and animals were scurrying to save themselves from the upcoming Ice Age, a sloth named Sid (John Leguizamo), a woolly mammoth named Manny (Ray Romano), and a saber-toothed tiger named Diego (Denis Leary), are forced to become unlikely heroes. The three reluctantly come together when they have to return a human child to its father while braving the deadly elements of the impending Ice Age.
This is the story of a little penguin named Mumble (Elijah Wood) who has a terrible singing voice and later discovers he has no Heartsong. However, Mumble has an astute talent for something that none of the penguins had ever seen before: tap dancing. Though Mumble’s mom, Norma Jean (Nicole Kidman), thinks this little habit is cute, his dad, Memphis (Hugh Jackman), says it “just ain’t penguin.” Mumble’s friend, Gloria (Brittany Murphy), happens to be the best singer around, and they have a connection from the moment they hatch, but she struggles with his strange “hippity- hoppity” ways. Mumble is just too different, and Noah the Elder (Hugo Weaving), the stern leader of Emperor Land, casts him out of the community. Away from home for the first time, Mumble meets a posse of decidedly un-Emperor-like penguins: the Adelie Amigos.
A weather man (Bill Murray) is reluctantly sent to cover a story about a weather forecasting “rat” (as he calls it). This is his fourth year on the story and he makes no effort to hide his frustration. On awaking the following day he discovers that it’s Groundhog Day again, and again, and again. First he uses this to his advantage, then comes the realization that he is doomed to spend the rest of eternity in the same place, seeing the same people do the same thing EVERY day.
The Polar Express
The story of a young hero boy (Tom Hanks) on Christmas Eve who boards a powerful magical train that’s headed to the North Pole and Santa Claus’s home. What unfolds is an an adventure which follows a doubting boy, who takes an extraordinary train ride to the North Pole. During this ride, he embarks on a journey of self-discovery which shows him that the wonder of life never fades for those who believe.
When Andy (Chevy Chase) and Elizabeth (Madolyn Smith Osborne) buy a farm in Vermont, they can’t imagine the trouble that awaits them. Andy has quit his job as a sports journalist and is planning to use the peace and quiet of the country to write the Great American Novel. From the moment the movers’ truck gets lost with their furniture, though, there’s little peace and less quiet. From a maniacal mailman to a dead body buried in the garden, Andy is distracted by the town and its wacky inhabitants. His effort at a novel is mediocre, at best, and he’s threatened by Elizabeth’s foray into writing when she attempts a children’s book. Can the Farmers survive the townsfolk and each other?
Hot Tub Time Machine
Three friends on losing streaks: Adam (John Cusack), whose girlfriend dumped him, Nick (Craig Robinson), with a dead-end job and a cheating wife, and Lou (Rob Corddry), a suicidal alcoholic. To help Lou recover from car-exhaust poisoning, Adam and Nick, with Adam’s nephew Jacob (Clark Duke), go to a winter resort that was their old party place. It’s now a dump, but the lads rally for a night of drinking in the hot tub. Somehow, the hot tub takes them back to 1986, on a fateful night for each of them. Maybe if they do everything the same way they did that night, they’ll get back to the future so Jacob can be born. There are serious temptations to do things differently. Will they make it back to their sorry lives? And what about Jacob?
The characters are falling in love, falling out of love, some are with the right people, some are with the wrong people, some are looking to have an affair, some are in the period of mourning; a capsule summary of reality. Love begins and love ends. They flirt a lot. They are all flirting with love. At all ages and social levels, love is the theme of this movie, filmed and set in London during Christmas when the characters all end up at Heathrow airport on a very uplifting note.
A man, his son, and wife become the winter caretakers of an isolated hotel where Danny (Danny Lloyd), the son, sees disturbing visions of the hotel’s past using a telepathic gift known as “The Shining”. The father, Jack Torrance (Jack Nicholson), is underway in a writing project when he slowly slips into insanity as a result of cabin fever and former guests of the hotel’s ghosts. After being convinced by a waiter’s ghost to “correct” the family, Jack goes completely insane. The only thing that can save Danny and his mother (Shelley Duvall) is “The Shining.”
The Day After Tomorrow
As Paleoclimatologist named Jack Hall (Dennis Quaid) is in Antartica, he discovers that a huge ice sheet has sheared off. But what he does not know is that this event will trigger a massive climate shift that will affect the world population. Meanwhile, his son, Sam (Jake Gyllenhaal), is with friends in New York to attend an event. There they discover that it has been raining non-stop for the past 3 weeks, and after a series of weather-related disasters begin to occur over the world, everybody realizes the world is entering a new Ice Age and the world population begins trying to evacuate to the warmer climates of the south. Jack makes a daring attempt to rescue his son and his friends who are stuck in New York and who have managed to survive not only a massive wave but also freezing cold temperatures that could possibly kill them.
Jerry (William H. Macy) works in his father-in-law’s car dealership and has gotten himself in financial problems. He tries various schemes to come up with money needed for a reason that is never really explained. When all else falls through, plans he set in motion for two men to kidnap his wife for ransom to be paid by her wealthy father (who doesn’t seem to have the time of day for son-in-law) begins to unfold. From the moment of the kidnapping, things go wrong and what was supposed to be a non-violent affair turns bloody with more blood added by the minute. Jerry is upset at the bloodshed, which turns loose a pregnant sheriff from Brainerd, MN who is tenacious in attempting to solve the three murders in her jurisdiction.
Better Off Dead
Lane Meyer (John Cusack) is a depressed teen who loses his girlfriend, Beth (Amanda Wyss). Her given reason for breaking up is: “Lane, I think it’d be in my best interest if I dated somebody more popular. Better looking. Drives a nicer car.” Poor Lane is left alone and thinks up treacherous ways of killing himself. He finally meets a French beauty called Monique (Diane Franklin) and falls for her. Simultaneously, he must endure his mother’s terrible cooking, which literally slides off the table, and his disgusting next door neighbor (and his mum) while he prepares for the skiing race of his life — to get his old girlfriend back!
What are some of your favorite movies to watch during a snow day?
7 thoughts on “Snow Day! 15 Movies to Watch When You’re Snowed In”
Some interesting choices!
I am a fan of “Fargo.” I thought it was brilliant.
“The Shining” I won’t watch. I’ve read the book, but I ain’t watching it. 🙂
Good list! I have seen almost all of these, but now it is time to re-watch with the kids, some might have to wait til they are a little older though.
nice list–we just watched Valentines Day and New Years Eve back to back — I think with all the snow out side I’d much rather watch Point Break or Grease =^D
OK, that picture of Hot Tub Time Machine just made me laugh out loud. The whole thing is ridiculous, but sometimes that is exactly what you need!
My husband and I were craving movie from the 80’s as we watched and had our boys watch the Goonies-they loved it!
Sigh..I never got the chance to finish Edward Scissorhands. And this is just great list! most them I have been meaning to watch. Now I must find time with your add ons!
If you’re snowed in, The Shining probably isn’t your best choice, unless you like being freaked out w/nowhere to go. lol