Op-off: Is “The Nightmare Before Christmas” a halloween or christmas movie?


Photo from IMDB.

Halloween – Kaitlyn

“Nightmare Before Christmas” is one of the best Tim Burton movies ever created. For those who don’t know who Tim Burton is, he is a filmmaker whose movies consist of a Halloween-esque clay animation style. A lot of Burton’s films focus heavily on Halloween themes, like ”Frankenweenie”, ”The Corpse Bride” and more. Following the theme, his movie “The Nightmare Before Christmas” is no different, and is obviously a Halloween movie. Here’s some reasons why I think it’s a Halloween movie and not a Christmas movie:

– This movie stars characters Jack Skellington and Sally (a Frankenstein girl). Skeletons and Frankenstein creatures are common Halloween symbols, whether they are wearing Santa hats or not. Skellington is seen wearing a Santa hat that he stole from Santa in the Christmas world, and while that is a Christmas symbol, he’s a skeleton.

– The animation style for this movie is the same as other Tim Burton movies. The other movies that Burton has made are all slightly eerie (although fun and made for children.) If the rest of his movies are all Halloween-time centered films, it would not make sense for this movie to be the exception.

– Finally, the name just screams Halloween. The “Nightmare before Christmas.” Although it is a play on words from the Night Before Christmas story, the word “nightmare” makes it more Halloween-ish, especially since the word nightmare comes before the word Christmas.

Christmas – Nadia

The timeless question of whether “The Nightmare Before Christmas” is a Halloween or Christmas movie is hot on our minds as we enter the holiday season, so after walking around the school and accosting numerous students about this very query, I feel it very necessary to defend this holiday classic– that holiday is Christmas of course.

There are plenty of arguments for both sides, but only the Christmas arguments have validity, in my (highly refined) opinion. Let’s dive into every reason why “The Nightmare Before Christmas” is a Christmas movie.

– The holiday spirit is infectious and apparent throughout the course of the movie. The characters aren’t even familiar with the holiday and they’re influenced and moved by it, so much so that they go as far as to steal Santa and replace him with a very tall skeleton man.

– The timeline. Though the majority of the movie takes place between Halloween and Christmas, the climax of the story actually happens on Christmas Eve. This matters, people.

– The movie’s plot literally only progressed because of the constant desire to recreate Christmas. All the Halloween characters are attempting to celebrate Christmas and they spend more time on Christmas than anything else.

I’ll admit, the movie has tons of Halloween iconography, but the mood and story line all revolve around Christmas. At the end of the day, it is a Christmas movie through and through.