Christmas Movie-Mashup: A Merry Retrospective

Christmas Movie-Mashup:  It's A Wonderful LifeRecently on our facebook page we asked our friends “What classic Christmas movie would you like to see in a movie theater?” After all, the idea of taking the family to the movies after a day of shopping to see the 1946 classic It’s A Wonderful Life or the Bing Crosby and Danny Kaye (article) feature White Christmas would be a real holiday treat.

Well, this got us thinking about all the Christmas related articles and holiday movie suggestions we’ve published and made over the past year or so. What follows is our pick of some of the best Holiday-related articles that have appeared on our blog.

We agree that Bad Santaand Elf are true classic Christmas movies, but as the president of Movies Unlimited always reminds us, the true classics are Oldies But Goodies. We’d love to know what Christmas movies you will be sharing with family and friends this holiday season… feel free to comment and let us know.

White Christmas: Guest blogger David Lobosco sent in a wonderful article about the 1954 smash hit White Christmas starring Bing Crosby and Danny Kaye. In addition to talking about the history of White Christmas (the number one movie of 1954), the article also discusses the author’s take on Paramount’s 2010 arrival of White Christmas on Blu-ray in a special edition 2-disc set. The Holiday edition of the timeless classic comes with a stocking full of bonus features including commentary by Rosemary Clooney, two theatrical trailers and lots more.

Another classic Christmas movie, although lesser known, was featured on our blog: Mitchell Leisen (article) directedRemember the Night starring Barbara Stanwyck and Fred MacMurray. In this article about the 1940 romantic comedy released by Paramount Pictures, we ask the question is this movie too good to show only at Christmas? Could this be the only classic Christmas movie where the female lead character is a criminal?

Next in our Christmas movie-mashup, we take a look at a Christmas collage with a slightly different holiday jingle. Jingle Blahs: Cinema’s Most Downbeat Christmas Scenes takes a look at the darker side of Christmas movies. It’s possible the author of this article received a few lumps of coal in his stocking after he pointed out the downbeat facets of such lovable movies as It’s A Wonderful Life and The Man Who Came to Dinner (article). Is this blasphemy or does he have a good point?

Christmas Movie-Mashup: Santa Claus (1959)

Christmas Movie-Mashup: Santa Claus from 1959

Guest writer Joanna Wilson sent in a short article about her favorite Christmas TV episode of Cheers. “Christmas Cheers” aired in 1987 and has the famed cast in a cynical mood complaining about the often shown holiday movie, It’s A Wonderful Life. But as the bar staff and patrons watch the 1946 Christmas staple, their cynicism disappears and their sentimental holiday spirit begins to shine.

Well, since we have mentioned some of the most loved Christmas movies of all time, it is only fair to sway in the other direction and mention possibly one of the worst Christmas movies ever made. Santa Claus, a 1959 Mexican made “kiddie matinee” feature that could have possibly ruined Christmas for many Saturday afternoon movie-goers. Dr. Strangefilm (article archive) brings to light many unknown and interesting facts about Father Christmas… but what would be the fun of ruining a great Christmas surprise? Read the article and enjoy the cynicism.

Movie Irv, our resident video-podcaster, has published several Christmas themed podcasts. The one episode from December 2009 focused on many great Christmas gift ideas to give to friends and family and a few movies worth adding to one’s own collection. Holiday Podcast II focused on Offbeat Christmas Movies. How many of these oddball holiday choices have you seen? And last but not least, Movie Irv stepped aside to give some camera time to his kids so they could review Disney’s A Christmas Carol.  If you have a computer or a phone with a video camera on it (and we all know you do), make a video review of your favorite Christmas Movie and we will publish it.

Staff writer Brian Sieck wrote an article about Barbara Stanwyck Christmas classic, Christmas In Connecticut. After watching the 1945 Warner Brothers film that also stars famed character actors Sydney Greenstreet (bio) and S. Z. “Cuddles” Sakall (bio), Brian came to the conclusion that Christmas In Connecticut “eventually devolves into a succession of resolutions that are safe and saccharin sweet, which is somewhat forgivable being that it’s a Christmas film, but ultimately a letdown since some of the characters’ initial transgressions are so grand.” Wow, that’s a mouthful! Tell us what you think about Christmas In Connecticut; please leave a comment at the end of the article or join the conversation on facebook, which can be found in the thread midway down our page.

Movie Fans, these are some of our favorite Christmas articles we’ve already published. We hope you enjoy them as much as we enjoyed offering them. By the way, if you are looking for a certain movie for a gift this season, please visit our Facebook page and ask a question; we will be more than happy to help you out.

And now, enjoy three minutes of fun with the trailer from 1942’s The Man Who Came To Dinner:

Have you seen our Christmas Create-A-Caption with the 1945 movie, The Ref? And while you’re at it, let your voice be heard and vote for the “best “Golden Age” holiday movie?

  • tony payne

    The old adage “They don’t make em like this anymore” was in full evidence today. On reading my paper over breakfast this morning I was reading the latest film reviews of the week. Seven new films were released and the maximum stars awarded accross six of them, which included Angelina Jolie’s new film The Tourist, was 3. The one release that got all 5 stars was ‘The Shop around the Corner’fabulous!

  • John F. Burton

    Taking nothing away from “It’s a Wonderful Life,” or “Miracle on 34th Street” ( a movie I do love)or the many other terrific holiday themed pictures, I have a real affinity for “Holiday Affair” and “Three Godfathers.” “Holiday Affair,” while kind of a standard romantic comedy, is ramped up with the presence of a young and lovely Janet Leigh, and especially by Robert Mitchum, who is pretty much at his peak of RKO deceptive nonchalance and absolute cool.
    “Three Godfathers,” a story Ford had filmed before, is highlighted by Ford’s visual poetry and wonderful cast of his stock company players (an especially effective John Wayne), and the unrepentant Ford sentimentality, which he lays on with just the right amount of thickness.

    • Melek

      Oh and, we sarehd many of the same favorite past times as only children. I have pictures of my cats in doll clothes… but luckily there is no footage of me rocking out to Amy Grant.

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  • Festival films/movies

    The film was definitely worth watching. Sort of reminds me of an Old Boy remake. But going as far as saying it’s going to get some kind of Oscar nod is crazy. No way. I don’t understand why it’s getting so much buzz. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PEc8FSAUU8I

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  • Vicki Barrett

    Marlo Thomas played in a Christmas movie similar to ” It’s Wonderful Life”. Could you tell me what the title was and how to find it?

    Thank you,

    Vicki

  • http://www.moviesunlimited.com Gary Cahall

    Vicki, the film you’re talking about was It Happened One Christmas, a 1977 made-for-TV movie which adapated the “It’s a Wonderful Life” story and starred Marlo Thomas in the Jimmy Stewart role, Orson Welles as Mr. Potter, and Cloris Leachman as Thomas’ guardian angel. Unfortunately, it’s not currently available on home video.

    • Jesus

      It looks aiznmag ! I really really enjoy reading and looking at your blog.You make me laugh and smile and always inspire me thank you!

    • Ceren

      I would spend the money on byuing a new bed for my son for Christmas. He has needed a new bed for over a year. Thank you so much for this wonderful contest. Merry Christmas!

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  • dvill

    I learned so much from the article.I gained so much information
    from that really informative article.it’s really interesting.
    Thanks for the post.Expect to read more.

    • Jemmah

      laura: We fit into that story sohomew, I’m sure. you DONT fit into that story, but the STORY will fit YOU because someone will just come along and say something like evolutionary psychology doesn’t explain everything / everybody’s different/ etc. without providing any evidence.

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  • Glbyrd

    Along with …”Wonderful Life”  we watch the “Christmas” movies–The Christmas Shoes, Christmas Hope, Christmas Child…a series of four movies I believe…they have exceptionally good stories though some might consider them maudlin