In today’s guest post, Craig Joseph Pisani presents a timely look at Christmas movies:
With Christmas Day fast approaching, in between shopping sprees and decorating lawns like Las Vegas, you may find leisure moments to fill your holiday Hollywood viewing needs before the birth of Christ and your guests arrive bearing gifts of junk, junk, and more junk. Here is a short list of personal recommendations with a brief synopsis (courtesy of IMDb) and one word reason why to watch:
5. White Christmas (1954): A successful song and dance team become romantically involved with a sister act and team up to save the failing Vermont inn of their former commanding general.
CLASSIC– The film won’t be for everyone as the newer generations aren’t accustomed to watching musical numbers breakout during every other scene but what’s more iconic than hearing good ole Bing croon a Christmas carol.
4. Die Hard (1988): John McClane, officer of the NYPD, tries to save his wife Holly Gennaro and several others that were taken hostage by German terrorist Hans Gruber during a Christmas party at the Nakatomi Plaza in Los Angeles.
YIPPEE KI-YAY MOTHER FU#@*R– One word/one phrase, what’s the difference? It’s the greatest one liner in movie history and the film has more “Christmas” than most films labeled as such. I can’t think of a better way to spend the Eve than to watch McClane cowboy his way thru Nakatomi while I’m waiting for dessert.
3. Elf (2003): After inadvertently wreaking havoc on the elf community due to his ungainly size, a man raised as an elf at the North Pole is sent to the U.S. in search of his true identity.
FERRELL – The story works decently well but the SNL alum’s idiotic but innocent portrayal wins you over and gives you a few “LOL” moments to enjoy with the whole family in this PG rated comedy.
2. National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (1989): The Griswold family’s plans for a big family Christmas predictably turn into a big disaster.
SNOWBALL – Just when you think things won’t get any worse they do. The snowball effect starts small and leads to great characters continuing to pop up beginning with oddball Cousin Eddie and portraying the fun disaster we all wish Christmas in our homes could be.
1. It’s a Wonderful Life (1946)- An angel is sent from Heaven to help a desperately frustrated businessman by showing him what life would have been like if he had never existed.
STORY – By far the best tale amongst the group and an extremely well-constructed Oscar nominated film by Frank Capra. George Bailey, played by James Stewart, is a relatable character to anyone who has never had a chance to succeed in their dreams which when being honest with ourselves would probably be most. The story allows for self-reflection and maybe by films end you will appreciate your life just a little more.
Craig Pisani is an avid moviegoer and aspiring screenwriter with Bachelor’s degrees in both Cinema and English.