Monday, December 21, 2015

Movie Monday 12/21 - Scrooged & Other Holiday Movies

All four of us came down with a stomach virus last week (actually 12 extended family members in total got it!), so we spent last Monday sprawled all over the family room in couches, recliners, and the floor, sipping water, nibbling crackers, and watching mindless TV. This was a good movie for that state of mind!

We watched Scrooged, a 1988 version of A Christmas Carol, starring Bill Murray. You probably already know the general storyline! In this adaptation, Murray plays Frank Cross, a television executive willing to sacrifice anything to get good ratings. Christmas is coming and besides holiday specials like The Night the Reindeer Died starring Lee Majors, Cross has ordered his staff to put on a live version of A Christmas Carol, requiring everyone to work Christmas Eve. Of course, on that fateful night, Cross himself is visited by the ghosts of Christmas past, present, and future (with the Christmas Present ghost a small fairy played by Carol Kane). You know how the story goes. Karen Allen co-stars as Cross's ex-girlfriend, who remembers him when he was a good guy and not so corrupted by greed. There are some fun cameos here, like Mary Lou Retton playing Little Tim in their live version of the story! The movie was nothing spectacular, just a fun little bit of holiday fluff, with classic 80's SNL Bill Murray. Perfect for a day when we were wracked by fever and looking for some distraction that required no thought!

Some of our other favorite holiday movies include Love, Actually (one of the best!), The Holiday, National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation (more pure silly fun), Miracle on 34th Street (the original, naturally), and, of course, It's a Wonderful Life. My kids love Home Alone, of course, and I really loved The Family Stone.

We are more likely to watch old Christmas TV specials than movies this season - we have a large collection on DVD and, yes, many on VHS: shows like Santa Claus is Coming to Town, Rudolph, Frosty the Snowman, A Charlie Brown Christmas, and various Muppet Christmas Specials (our favorite is the 1998 A Muppet Family Christmas - cracks us up every time!). The Snowman is a beautiful video to watch during the holiday season, adapted from a picture book and featuring gorgeous colored pencil drawings and beautiful music.

What are your favorite holiday movies and/or Christmas specials?

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