Cethan’s Christmas Cinematic Choices

December 12, 2011 § 3 Comments

My Christmas Movie Picks:

Rare Exports

Great strange stuff from Finland about an evil Santa frozen in the ice, but I do worry however about any kids accidentally watching it. Christmas is stressful enough without worrying that Santa is going to steal you from you bed and leave a life size replacement doll behind.

Die Hard

There is an eternal question that befuddles the mind of many a Christmas film enthusiast. This question is “Is Die Hard a Christmas movie?” The answer is not as obvious as you may think. It is set during Christmas, but it’s not really integral to the plot. John McClane learns nothing of the true meaning of the season; unless the true meaning of the season is “walking bare foot on broken glass is painful.” However, he does kill a lot of terrorist/robbers who could be described as Grinch-like in their meanness.

It will be one of the great cinematic debates for centuries to come.

(Incidentally, why is Alan Rickman always ruining Christmas? Not only is he upsetting Bruce Willis’s plans in Die Hard, he cancels Christmas in Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves and he gets caught out as a love cheat in Love Actually. Do not invite this man to turkey dinner.)

Black Christmas

In the subgenre of Christmas Horror movies, Black Christmas stands out from the crowd. It’s influential as the missing link between Psycho and Halloween in the creation of the slasher film, displaying many of the hallmarks of the genre and coining several of its clichés, including 1st person point-of-view, fake out scares and gruesome gore. It also stands apart from other Christmas Horror movies by being half way decent.

It’s a Wonderful Life

You’ve probably seen this movie. I suggest you watch it again and remember its important lessons of deferred dreams, nightmarish alternative dimensions and responsible Capitalism.

The Thin Man

Nick and Nora are a wealthy married couple that spend Christmas swapping presents and witty banter, drinking steadily through the day and solving a murder. Incidentally this is also exactly how I spend Christmas. Find out what it is like by watching this outstanding film, that started a long line of watchable sequels. For more wisecracking detectives at Christmas time, Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang is a worthy alternative in that fancy schmany “Colour” the kids are into these days.

Batman Returns

Universally agreed to be the best Batman film set at Christmas (beating out Batman & Robin), Batman Returns is exactly what a comic book Noel should be. It’s funny, creepy, gothic, a touch bizarre and it features penguins with rockets. Michael Keaton does good work as the Dark Knight and the rogue’s gallery of baddies are suitably villainous.

On reflection, Batman Returns is the best Batman film (awaits emails from angry Adam West fans).

Muppets Christmas Carol

There are many, many versions of Charlie Dickens’ A Christmas Carol (including my own version), but only one has Michael Caine being heckled by ghost versions of the muppets, Waldorf and Statler.

 

and some more!

Elf

The Nightmare Before Christmas

Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang

Gremlins

Arthur Christmas 

Bad Santa

Cork Christmas Carol *Cough*

Romancing The Stone (Yes, not set during Christmas. But it isn’t Christmas if this isn’t sitting in the TV schedule somewhere)

So enjoy some Cethan Approved film viewing. Also if I find out that you watched none of these and instead watched Love Actually, I will be very upset.

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§ 3 Responses to Cethan’s Christmas Cinematic Choices

  • dbmoviesblog says:

    Oh, I so agree with you that Batman Returns is the best Batman film! I was virtually brought up on it (I lived in Russia!) I remember watching it on VHS. I feel ‘uncomfortable’ to say the least seeing now Nolan’s take on it with Christian Bale. I know it is a great film, but every time I watch it I have this nostalgia for Batman Returns. Who can top the Penguin?

  • cethan says:

    It’s true. Not to disparage the Christopher Nolan version (which is fine), I just prefer the heightened Gothic stuff of Batman Returns.

  • Gemma says:

    Yes I can now agree that The Thin Man is good Christmas viewing. Followed closely by ‘After the Thin Man’, for New Years.
    I also agree-Love Actually is horrible in parts.

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