Last week my editor, the lovely and talented Miss Kelly Glista, e-mailed me and said she had a hot story. A story to put us all in the Christmas spirit. She said, "Scoop, (yeah, she calls me "Scoop" because I get all the big scoops on the hot movies) why don't you review one of your favorite Christmas movies of all time?" And I said, "You got it boss! Consider it done!"
I've been doing a lot of thinking on which Christmas movie is my favorite, and I've come to the conclusion that there are just too many. So, I'm just gonna rattle off a few that have touched me over the years.
I grew up in a big Irish family, (I have seven brothers and sisters) and we lived in a NOT gigantic house, so my parents would sleep on the pull-out sofa in the living room. On the night that "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer" would be on TV, my parents would let me and my siblings watch that movie from under their pull-out bed as they watched from above (or maybe they were trying to give me another brother or sister, I'm not sure). We'd eat popcorn under there and enjoy watching the reindeer games, and just hanging out together. We especially loved watching my brother, Andy, cry when the Abominable Snowman came on the screen... What a wimp! I think I love this movie because it reminds me of the great times I had as a child with my family... Or it could be because me and Rudolph have the same giant red beak.
There are plenty of wonderful Christmas films out there and I'm thinking that maybe I shall review one from each rating system: G, PG, and R. Doesn't that sound like fun? OK then, hop in my sleigh and let's go for a ride!
We'll start with a great movie for the children. This movie is rated G, and it is called "The Polar Express."
"The Polar Express" tells the story of a young boy who has doubts that there is a Santa Claus. He embarks on a journey to the North Pole on Christmas Eve on a magical train driven by an oddball conductor, wonderfully voiced by Tom Hanks. Hanks actually voices six characters in this animated adventure, including Scrooge and jolly old St. Nick.
This a great movie and I have no doubts that children both near and far will love this family film... Plus, Robert Zemekis directed it and we all know his big claim to fame: "Back to the Future"!
Up next, we have a PG movie for you all. This one's good for the teenagers and their parents, but the younglings may nod off before the midway point. "National Lampoon's: Christmas Vacation"
"Christmas Vacation" follows the story of a family we all have grown to love: the Griswolds!
In this third adventure (the first being "Vacation" and the second, "European Vacation") Clark, (fantastically played by Chevy Chase) is trying to gather his extended family over the holidays to celebrate the season together. I think we all know what happens when you get the "family" together. Let's just say there's no better family member on this planet than "Cousin Eddie." This guy could ruin a free lunch! But I must tell you, he means well (weird, I've been called "Cousin Eddie" by my family.). Also, there is a scene at the end of this film where Clark goes off on his boss for about five minutes straight that'll have you rolling on the floor. Hilarious film.
Now we're at rated R... "Bad Santa."
"Bad Santa" stars Billy Bob Thornton as a drunken Santa Claus who robs department stores on Christmas Eve, along with his half-pint elf (well played by Tony Cox).
Santa does some perverted stuff and is a big time boozebag, but he does befriend a child and he eventually sees the light... It's getting to that light that makes this film rated R. Don't get me wrong, I loved it! And if you have an open mind, you'll love it too... It's a "must see" for me.
I'm not going to give you any rated XXX movie today, because this is a family paper and we don't delve into that realm at all!!! How dare you!
I do want to give props to one more Christmas film though before I sign off. And that film is: "Die Hard."
Not many people think "Die Hard" is a Christmas movie, but let us all remember that it takes place at the Nakatomi building during a Christmas party. And we all know who saves the day... John McClane! YIPPIE-KI-EH............. (well, you know the rest)!
I hope I gave you a few movies you can enjoy during the holiday season. And remember, there's a theatre just down the road... I'll see you at the flickers.
Merry Christmas to you and your families.
Love, Matty W. Kelley, Norwood Patch, reporting.
Fun Fact: Richard Gere, Don Johnson, and Richard Dean Anderson, (yeah, MacGyver) were all considered for the role of John McClane in "Die Hard." That role went to Bruce Willis.