Christmas Favorites

A Christmas Story

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This classic Christmas tale delights the young and old alike. I was aghast when my boyfriend told me he had not seen this film and promptly sat him down to watch the film. This cult classic is the genesis of many one liners including the infamous “You’ll shoot your eye out!” But it’s more than a silly tale of growing up. There is depth into the psyche of a child that can only be explained through adult Ralph’s narration. And we all know these feeling and day dreams. The movie reminds us of our inner child, especially the part that didn’t say fudge.

 

A Charlie Brown Christmas

CHARLIE BROWN TRIES TO PERK UP THE FORLORN LITTLE CHRISTMAS TREE

This touching classic was predicted by one executive to be a failure. Instead it became the Network Television mainstay on teaching the story of Christ succinctly and humorously. The animated feature is pure Charlie Brown; nothing can go right. But Charlie Brown knows that everyone needs to be loved and adopts a poor tree that no one wants for their Christmas play. Lucy and company become consumed with the commercial aspect of the play and it is her little brother Linus and his Bible soliloquy that sets the record straight about Christmas. Once again, it is the little man that moves the spirit.

 

The Muppet Christmas Carol

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There are two version of A Christmas Carol that I truly enjoy. The first is Blackadder’s take on the tale. This satire turns nice Scrooge into grumpy Scrooge. The other is The Muppet adaptation. Gonzo narrates the story playing Charles Dickens with slapstick. His trusty sidekick, Rizzo gets into as much trouble as Scrooge himself. It has all the hallmarks of a classic: musical numbers, humor, morals, and puppets. The Muppets put the fun into the classic tale capturing the attention of younger ages. Maybe The Muppets can do more of the classic. Imagine Wuthering Heights featuring The Muppets!

Love Actually
bill-nighy-in-love-actuallyBefore you knew him as Rick Grimes Zombie Slayer, before you knew him as Bilbo Baggins, Andrew Lincoln and Martin Freeman starred in the British holiday romance Love Actually. Featuring famous names such as Hugh Grant, Alan Rickman, Bill Nighty and Liam Neeson (just to name a few), this ensemble film intertwined a variety of love stories giving each tale a full story arc and intertwining the characters. This Richard Curtis film is what Gary Marshall tried to emulate with his films, but he can’t quite get the same charm and complexity of these rich characters. Each actor gives a moving performance in the variety of relationship roles given to the characters. There is true love, unrequited love, and family love. There are deaths, weddings and affairs. The movie takes a real look at love and manages to make you smile in the end.

 

Elf

ElfWhen I first sat down to watch this move, I wasn’t sure if it be good or really stupid. Will Ferrell’s track records if 50/50 with some movies being really good and others being ridiculous. This movie was actually charming and moving. When elf Buddy learns that he is actually human, he goes to New York to find his real father who is a real Scrooge. Buddy must learn to adapt to a new world while keeping the Christmas Spirit alive. Buddy is endearing as the quintessential man-child and our heart aches for him to have a relationship with his family. Buddy works his way into their hearts and reminds the world, “Don’t stop believing!”

The Santa Clause

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I love this movie. Tim Allen is always so funny, and it was a nice twist to see the Scrooge character turn into Santa Clause. Viewers watch Allen turn physically and mentally into the jolly old elf. Laughs galore follow these changes as well as his relationship with his son and ex-wife. Often under-appreciated Judge Reinhold gives a solid performance as the annoying therapist new husband who manages to make you laugh all the while. Like many of the movies on my list, The Santa Clause blends humor with deep and emotional moral values. Yes, Virginia! We will forget that sequels were made!

 

 

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