Tag Archives: Christmas Movies

Holiday-a-Thon #24 It’s a Wonderful Life (1946)

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It's A Wonderful LifeWe’ve finally arrived at the end. The 24th of December, Christmas eve and with that the final movie in my Holiday-a-Thon. And what an end it was, I’d tell ya.
Frank Capra’s It’s a Wonderful Life, one of the all-time greatest classics James Stewart as the down-on-his-luck businessman George Bailey. Hey, one thing I have to mention right off the bat…. What a performance Stewart delivers. The word “Wow” doesn’t quite cover it, but it’ll do if you add the words Brilliant and Perfect to it. Yeah, without a doubt one of the greatest performances of the era (and ours)! But now, on to the movie itself….

It's a Wonderful Life DVDWe start out with a couple of angels discussing what to do with a man down on his luck, thinking about taking his life. They send for a third angel, a second-class angel, Clarence Odbody, who is more than eager to earn his wings. What we see after that is how the life of George Bailey turns out, what choices he makes, the women he dates, how he misses out on opportunity after opportunity, finally arriving at the end of his ropes, on Christmas eve, thinking that suicide is the last way out.

This movie is without a doubt one of the greatest Christmas classics of all time. Sure, the overall feel of the film has nothing to do with Christmas at all, but he feeling you get when watching it does. It gives you hope. It shows you compassion. It has love and a sense of truth and emotion to it that knows no peers. And with that said, I conclude this Holiday-a-Thon with these words; If you haven’t seen this film yet, well… first off, I feel bad for you, I really do! Second, if you haven’t seen this film yet, I strongly urge you to do so. It truly is a masterpiece in its own right and there is no movie out there like it.

So, there you have it. 24 movie “reviews” on the 24th of December. What’ya think about that? Not too shabby, huh….
But hey, it’s not completely over yet, ’cause we still have my top5 to see tomorrow. But until then….


Holiday-a-Thon #23 It’s a Very Merry Muppet Christmas (2002)

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It's a Very Merry Muppet Christmas bannerIn 2011, the Muppets had to pull their strengths together to save their theatre. Well, that’s nothing new for the Muppets, actually, as that is the exact plot of this It’s a Very Merry Muppet Christmas. Yeah sure, they are not identical, not by a long-shot  But the essence of them both is the same…. but that’s okay, ’cause it works. When it comes to The Muppets, nothing is off the table. I imagine the creative meetings going something like this;
– “Have we done this thing before?
– Who cares, just put a spin on it and it’ll be just fine.”
But like I said, when it comes to the Muppets, that’s okay, ’cause they’re just that fun to watch anyways, and this Christmas themed film is nothing but not that. A fun watch. Classic Muppet comedy with the ever awesome Kermit in the front, followed closely by Fozzy, Gonzo, Miss Piggy and all the rest.

This may not be the greatest Christmas film of all time, but it sure is one hell of a good watch. Why? ‘Cause it’s the damn Muppets, that’s why. Jim Henson, I salute you for creating The Muppets!

Tomorrow is Christmas Eve, and as I am of Swedish decent, this is the day I’ll be celebrating the holidays, but don’t worry, the Holiday-a-thon will come to a close on Thursday with My definitive Top5 list of Must-watch Christmas films, so tune in later this week if you want to read some final thoughts on my favorite holiday themed movies. “But wait, shouldn’t there be 24 movies?” Right you are, my friend! As I said, tomorrow is Christmas Eve, so I’ll be glooming a stare on the TV tomorrow as well, and the classic that I’ll be watching is….. you guessed it, It’s a Wonderful Life, so please tune in tomorrow as well. But hey, if you read this (and/or that) after the holidays, have a Merry Christmas, a happy Hanukkah, a happy Kwanza (and a merry whatever you’re celebrating)… let’s just say Happy Holidays!!

Holiday-a-Thon #22 The Santa Clause (1994)

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The Santa Clause posterChristmas is rampantly closing in and with that, the 2014 Holiday-a-thon is coming to a close, with only It’s a Very Merry Muppet Christmas and It’s a Wonderful Life left to go. But first, let’s take a look at The Santa Clause.

First off, Tim Allen is absolutely magnificent in this film. Like I said earlier in the -thon, he is brilliant in this (and the two followups too of course) as the titular character, with his comedic timing, his facial expressions and his exceptional body language. But that’s not all, no…. he actually manages to convey an emotional non-indifference, pulling the audience in for a fantastic performance!

The movie itself, well…. it’s not too shabby, actually. The story about Scott Calvin (Allen), a man who after inadvertently killing Santa Clause has to take his place as the New Santa Clause? Yeah, that feels pretty original to me. Well, maybe not nowadays since it’s been done now, but back then. And the way we’re treated with the whole “North Pole and Santa’s workshop” scenario is yet again in this -thon brought to us in a very inventive way. The plot about Scott Calvin taking over the mantle as Santa is later on in the film strengthened by his visitation rights with his son being questioned by his ex-wife, Laura, and her new husband, Neil, (Wendy Carson and Judge Reinhold respectively). The emotional trauma caused by not being allowed to see his son is extraordinarily strong and Allen does a wonderful job with it.

From start to finish, I think this movie is an utter delight to watch. I have actually watched this movie (and its sequels) every Christmas for the last 3 or 4 years and I bet I’ll be watching them again next year. But did it (this one only) make the cut for my Top5? Tune in on Thursday to find out. But until then….