Monday, December 20, 2010

Holiday Movie Nostalgia

​I am not a big Christmas person.  I don’t know why?  Maybe it’s the fact that I don’t have kids so the pageantry and fun escapes me.  Giving presents is fine and getting them is cool too but really it’s the just a day when folks want people to feel this sacrine feeling that people care for one another even though they fight for parking in every lot and as far as I can tell wouldn’t piss on your teeth if they were on fire the rest of the year.

​On that note “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” is a pretty damn good movie.  Of course I mean the cartoon and not the abomination with Jim Carrey.  The cartoon is all about how the spirit of the holiday and peace and love towards our fellow human as what is important.  Not the material goods.  I can just imagine that if this came out in this day and age and wasn’t already set up as a holiday institution, Dr. Seuss would be branded a socialist by Fox News and people would protest in outrage.   It’s awesome that Boris Karloff provided the voice of the Grinch.

​Another I love is “It’s a Wonderful Life”.  Yes it’s overplayed but its message is so good.  A life is worth living as long as you have friends.  One big complaint though.  In the alternate George Bailey-less universe it seems odd to me that they assume that Mary would become a librarian that never married an awful fate.  Plus, considering the number of kids she crapped out I find it hard to believe that she honestly became an old maid without George Bailey.

​One I find preachy now is “A Charlie Brown Christmas”.  The message is not a subtle in the story.  Instead of working in a bit of Christian overtones hidden in a sea of fun cartoon we get a sermon at the end the cartoon. I find that ridiculous in a show that is 25 minutes long and is usually wedged inside tons of commercials to fill the void.  There is nothing like vast commercialism to make the spiritual message seem really hollow.

​“White Christmas” bothers me because you have long and seemingly pointless song and dance numbers.  Some have NOTHING to do with the holiday performance they are trying to create.  So it’s like they are going out of their way to waste your time.  Or show you the stuff that should be on the cutting room floor.  I’ll admit the songs can be catchy but let’s face the ENTIRE premise is based around a guy whose music partner wants to get in some girls pants so he leads them to a crappy hotel with no snow.  Instead of kicking his partner’s ass he finds out the owner of the hotel is their former general so they feel they owe it to him to put on a show there.  If that makes sense to you I got a bridge I’d like to see you.

​Here is one I dig: “A Christmas Carol”, any version.  I like that Scrooge literally gets a night to warp time and space and see what an ass he is.  It’s supernatural time travel at its most fun.  I also really enjoyed that new animated version with Jim Carrey.  Those Robert Zemeckis CGI Animations are fabulous and can really tell an amazing story that is remarkably adult.  If you get a chance see “Beowulf” and “Monster House” too.  They are really dark and quiet clever.

​“Nightmare Before Christmas” Is a bit short but it’s still awesome.  Is it a Halloween movie?  Is it a Christmas movie?  The answer to both is of course yes.  It’s stylized almost like a silent movie of the German expressionist era when there are curves and angles everywhere.  The character’s themselves are really awesome.  I love the Oogie Boogie Man’s lair and the glowing look it has.

​“A Christmas Story” is a classic.  What kid hasn’t wanted a toy so badly that they pined for it night and day?   It’s a great story and it’s delivered well.  The script is witty and the characters sell it like champs. If you haven’t seen this movie what are you waiting for?  It’s really funny and it feels like a childhood memory for just about everyone that watches it.

​“Santa Claus Conquers the Martians” is what we get when I start to hit the bottom of the barrel.  The costumes are trash. The sets are jokes and the credits look like they were made by a four year old.  Is that good enough for you? It’s just dull.  The title is even misleading.  There is no actual conquering.  Santa more or less gets kidnapped and befriends them.

​The Mexican movie “Santa Claus” pits Santa Claus versus the Devil Pitch in a battle for the souls of the children of the world.  Is that creepy enough?  You should see it just for the surreal BS this movie throws at you.  Like did you know Santa lives in Space and not the North Pole?  And apparently he is friends with Merlin which is how he gets a lot of his abilities to get into folks houses?  This is surreal insanity probably even by Mexican standards.

​“Santa’s Slay” is not really a special.  It’s a movie about the wrestler Bill Goldberg playing Santa who apparently is Satan’s child coming to earth and killing folks in small American town.  Oh and the deal with the devil that foils his wretched plan, is a curling match.  Yeah this movie is pretty damn bad. I think folks can do a lot better if they were going to make a horror/comedy about a killer Santa.

​“Rudolf the Red Nosed Reindeer” is cool by me.  I like the characters enough and the songs stay in your head until your death.  But the best thing by far is the island of misfit toys.  “Whose ever heard of a Charlie in the box?!”  So I do appreciate it a lot for the creativity of it even though even as a kid I found it epically boring sometimes.

​So anyway those are the ones I like and dislike the most.  Sure you might disagree and can probably think of other things I forgot.  Like “The Santa Clause” (FYI. I hated it.  They treated becoming Santa like a disease at first which is disturbing and creepy.  It’s more like an eerie curse caused by a suit).  Anyway I hope you all have a wonderful holiday whatever you celebrate.


  1. Bad Santa for those enjoy a good bout of booze infused self loathing during the most expensive season of the year.

  2. Ah man! Yes "Bad Santa" is hilarious. A trully awesome holiday movie. Though I wonder if Billy Bob Thorton was acting sometimes. Seemed like an easy roll to fall into for him.