Are George and Mary Bailey
perennial guests at your holiday celebration?
Or is Ralphie Parker’s quest
for a Red Ryder BB gun a more relevant Christmas story?
That’s the question posed by
Time last week. In a 2006 poll, A Christmas Story was the favorite holiday movie
among ages 18–41, while the older demographic picked It’s a Wonderful
on 34th Street. Perhaps, speculates the article, Generations X and Y find Ralphie’s
memories a bit closer to their own.
As one who falls squarely in
the Baby Boomer generation, I’m unwilling to sacrifice either George
or Ralphie. Sure, A Christmas Story is much more fun to watch
with friends (especially if you take a drink whenever somebody says
"you’ll shoot your eye out"). But I always find a few melancholy
hours during the holidays to curl up with my cats and cry my way through
Bedford Falls. And I always have time to see the adorable face of an
eight-year-old Natalie Wood as she comes to believe in Santa
What other movies make the
holidays bright? Here are a few of mine.
Although I snobbishly claim not to like slapstick, this movie makes
me laugh every time. And nothing says holiday spirit like a speech from
Dad (Chevy Chase).
gonna press on, and we’re gonna have the hap, hap, happiest Christmas
since Bing Crosby tap-danced with Danny f—ing Kaye. And when Santa
squeezes his fat white ass down that chimney tonight, he’s gonna find
the jolliest bunch of a–holes this side of the nuthouse."
Of all the takeoffs on A Christmas Carol, this is my favorite.
I confess a bias toward anything Bill Murray
does, but Scrooged is so chock full of meta goodness that I catch
something new with every viewing. Besides, Carol Kane is the
Ghost of Christmas Present. The world needs more Carol Kane.
Yeah, I know it’s sappy and sentimental. But it’s also warm and funny
and, eventually, a little gay. I have friends who just don’t get why
I love this movie. I could claim that I simply want to watch Emma
Thompson, Keira Knightley and Laura Linney. Truth be told,
though, I don’t get why I love it, either. I just do.
Let’s see. That’s three snarky
and three sappy. That makes me a snarky sap. How about you? How do you
like your holiday movies? And what seasonal movies will you be watching
between now and the New Year?