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'A Christmas Story' and 5 other merry movie marathons

Billy Bob Thornton in

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

SCREENINGS Seven

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

SCREENINGS 18

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

SCREENINGS Eight

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)

SCREENINGS 12

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

SCREENINGS Eight

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

SCREENINGS Nine

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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