8. THE HEBREW HAMMER In the world’s first (and as of yet, only) Jew-sploitation movie, the sanctity of Hanukkah and the Jewish faith plays a pivotal role. Private (circumcised) dick Mordechai Jefferson Carver (Adam Goldberg) foils a plot by a deranged lunatic (Andy Dick) to lure Jewish kids away from their faith in favor of Christmas. In addition to being one of the few films about Hanukkah, the film bears the distinction of being the only to feature the line, “Shabbat Shalom, Motherf—ers.”
7. EIGHT CRAZY NIGHTS Like the kid who reaches for that one piece of gelt too many, Adam Sandler should have stopped while he was ahead. His hilarious “Hanukkah Song,” and its various revisions are a great contribution to the season. This film? Well, the best we can say about it is that without it, we would not have had eight films/TV shows with which to make a list. So for that, Adam, thanks a latke.
6. INGLOURIOUS BASTERDS The greatest Jewish revenge fantasy ever told, Quentin Tarantino‘s film only messes with the spelling, but totally revises history—sealing Hitler’s doom at the hands of ruthless Jewish-American soldiers. The Maccabees of ancient Israel may have been fierce and zealous, but their magic oil couldn’t hold a candle—let alone eight—to the Bear Jew’s (Eli Roth) bat.
5. LITTLE FOCKERS With yet another pop culture reference to Chrismukkah, the Meet the Parents second sequel features a mixed-marriage celebration and just enough family tension and ill-will to make us believe the Christmas-Hanukkah hybrid truly is a real holiday.
4. A RUGRATS CHANUKAH As delightful for all ages as a really good jelly donut, the world’s most adventurous babies quest to save the meaning of Hanukkah. Through a misunderstanding of adult-speak, they think they’re out to vanquish the “meany of Chanukah,” which is adorable. And that’s the point.
3. HANUKKAH HARRY ON SNL Portrayed with a Crown Heights accent bySaturday Night Live‘s Jon Lovitz in 1989, Hanukkah Harry is meant to be the Jewish complement to Santa Claus. Our Hebraic hero even steps in to save Christmas when Santa comes down with the flu, though his gifts of socks and slacks do little to impress the gentile girls and boys he visits. Ah vell, no time to kvetch. Harry has to get back on his donkey cart: On, Moische! On, Herschel! On, Schlomo!
2. THE OC: “THE BEST CHRISMUKKAH EVER”
Taking the “Christ” out of Christmas and the “ch” out of Hanukkah, The OC brought forth a commercialized season of gluttonous joy. In the classic episode (not to be confused with the later “The Chrismukkah That Almost Wasn’t”), Seth Cohen (Adam Brody) figures out a way to milk his mixed-marriage parents for all they’re worth, explaining that Chrismukkah is “eight presents, followed by one day of many presents.” Merry Chrismukkah to all!
1. AN AMERICAN TAIL The sweet story of Jewish mice immigrating to America to escape the 1885 pogroms by the Cossacks (or in this telling, an army of cruel cats), is a classic for the holiday. The brave young Fievel Mousekevitz even gets his signature blue hat as a Hanukkah present from his father, who explains the hat has been in the family for three generations. We trust this beautiful 1986 film will be around for even longer.