The Christmas season is well underway (I'm guessing since Halloween or earlier if you go to Costco). At this time every year I, and I'm sure you do too, have certain "must" movies and specials I like to watch every year to get into the season a little more. Today I'm going to talk about my favourite Christmas movies. Soon I will do a new entry about the specials. Just breaking it up so that the entry doesn't come more long winded than it probably will already. Now, onto the movies:
National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation
This is probably my favourite Christmas movie. It is full of hilarious scenes that will keep you in stitches. From Clark's disc ride down the hill and through the Wal-Mart to the cat getting fried eating christmas lights to Cousin Eddie emptying his RV's septic system into the street sewar with the simple explanation that "the shitter's full", I never stop laughing at this one. I know John Hughes is known for directing, writing or producing the teen angst movies but he also did holiday themed movies very well as well such as this Home Alone and Planes, Trains and Automobiles (which is Thanksgiving). This is just a great movie over all.
A Christmas Carol (1951)
This is probably my second favourite adaptation of Charles Dicken's classic tale. I think Alastair Sim is perfect as Scrooge and does a great job of playing the miserable miser at the beginning of the story to the loveable reformed man at the end. The ghosts are played with perfection too, as are all of the characters to be honest. The black and white film gives the Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come an extra creepiness that most other adaptations of this story just can't meet. However, as I said, this is my second favourite version of the tale. My favourite would be...
Mickey's Christmas Carol
I have watched this every year since I was a kid and still love it. I especially love how they involve so many of the classic Disney characters from Mickey as Bob Cratchet to Black Pete as the Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come. It's just so well done and gives kids a great way to learn and appreciate the story and should be required viewing for all kids at Christmas time.
This one is just a perennial classic for most people and is also on this list for more of a nostalgic reason for me. I used to watch this one every Christmas eve with my family. When I was a kid, I hated it but as I grew older I grew to appreciate it. I'll always have the fond memories of watching it with my parents and my grandparents, even if the grandparents always fell asleep in front of the fire half way through it.
A Christmas Story
I'm sure some of you were worried I had forgotten this one. This one is much like Christmas Vacation for me in that it is a great Christmas movie and is just hilarious. I'm sure everyone wanted a Red Rider BB gun after seeing this one as a kid. Me however, I always wanted the leg lamp, which my girlfriend would not find suprising as she says I love "crap".
Of course, there are lots of other great Christmas movies such as Miracle on 34th Street and Home Alone that I couldn't cover or this posting would have gotten waaay too long. Also, there are lots of craptastic ones out there too but I won't get into them. That's right Christmas with the Kranks, I'm looking at you.