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'A Christmas Story' and 5 other merry movie marathons

Billy Bob Thornton in "Bad Santa."

Billy Bob Thornton in "Bad Santa." Credit: Columbia Tristar

We don't remember when some brilliant TV mind came up with the idea of blitzing viewers with marathon repeats of holiday (and some non-holiday) movies on Christmas Eve and Christmas. But each year, it seems as if there are more to choose from. Here's a selective guide:

THE MOVIE "White Christmas"

WHEN | WHERE Starts Thursday at 9 a.m. through Friday at 1:30 a.m. on AMC


THE DEAL Two former Army buddies (Bing Crosby and Danny Kaye) put on a show with a sister act (Rosemary Clooney and Vera-Ellen) to save their general's Vermont hotel. Music by Irving Berlin.

THE MOVIE "Home Alone"

WHEN | WHERE Starts Thursday night at 6 and runs through Saturday at 4 a.m. on FMC


THE DEAL Accidentally left by his Paris-bound family, an 8-year-old (Macaulay Culkin) makes mincemeat of two burglars (Joe Pesci, Daniel Stern) in the house. Screenplay by John Hughes.

THE MOVIE "Night at the Museum"

WHEN | WHERE Starts Thursday night at 6:30 through Friday at 5 p.m. on FX


THE DEAL In this 2006 comedy, a night watchman at a museum of natural history (Ben Stiller) discovers that exhibits come alive after the building closes.

THE MOVIE "A Christmas Story"

WHEN | WHERE Starts Thursday night at 8 through Friday at 6 p.m., TBS)


THE DEAL The 1983 classic in which little Ralphie (Peter Billingsley) tries to convince his parents to get him a Red Ryder range-model BB gun for Christmas.

THE MOVIE "National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation"

WHEN | WHERE Starts Friday at 6:30 a.m. and runs through 10:15 p.m. on AMC


THE DEAL 1989 comedy in which the Griswolds (Chevy Chase, Beverly D'Angelo) spend the holiday in a garish way, especially when a country cousin (Randy Quaid) pulls up in an RV. Screenplay by John Hughes.

THE MOVIE "Bad Santa"

WHEN | WHERE Starts Friday at 9 a.m. and runs through 1 a.m. Saturday on Spike


THE DEAL In this 2003 comedy, two criminals (Billy Bob Thornton, Tony Cox) disguise themselves as St. Nick and an elf to rob stores at Christmastime.

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