Tag: Christmas

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Gremlins are Totally Misunderstood

One of the greatest Christmas classics of all-time is the 1980s hit horror film, Gremlins. Thanks to my impressionable young age at the time of its release and my mother’s repeat viewings of it every December, I grew up terrified of the song “Do You Hear What I Hear” and always thought there was something grisly about icing gingerbread men. That blender-microwave one-two shot really haunted me. In spite of the childhood trauma, it’s actually a fantastic movie chockful of yuletide spirit.

I was re-watching it again the other night and realized there is one major stand-out problem with this movie, though: The gremlins are not the bad guys. Not really. They’ve been totally misunderstood, marginalized, and murdered. Really, this film is little more than Christmas-themed anti-gremlin propaganda.

Don’t believe me? Read on as I lay out my case.

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Strange Things You Never Noticed About Christmas Movies

I wait all year long to watch classic Christmas movies. And I mean classic. None of that bullshit inside Hallmark jargon. Sorry, I was way forcing that quote and I didn’t pull it off very well. I just can’t help myself, I am THAT in love with real classic Christmas movies that teach us morals about love and togetherness and what really matters. Over and over I watch them to feel the spirit of glorious trees with dazzling lights and turkey and puzzles and wine and family and shopping and wrappings. Something funny happens, though, when you’ve watched them over and over and over, year after year for decades. Weird patterns emerge. And you notice things. Little things that a casual viewer would never catch. Have you noticed any of these before?

Christmas Movies Do Not Include Christmas Day

Call it a Yuletide frenzy, perhaps, but somehow our favorite Christmas movies climax early–er, that is to say that many do not actually include Christmas Day. I suppose the idea is that by the time we get to the proper holiday, we’ve sorted all of our conflicts and obstacles. We’ve confessed our love. I guess. Still, it’s a little weird when you think on it. Still, a few films do treasure the proper holiday. After all, none of the takes on A Christmas Carol would work without Scrooge on Christmas morning. A Christmas Story and Home Alone also buck the trend.

  • National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation
  • It’s a Wonderful Life
  • Love Actually
  • Die Hard
  • Scrooged
  • The Ref
  • Bad Santa
  • Elf
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Bah, Humbug! Ebenezer Scrooge, American Politics, and the Republican Party

Or “The Political Dichotomy of Ebenezer Scrooge as Depicted by SJW Charles Dickens”

Welcome to the holly jolly time of year when we all smile a little brighter, we all drink a little more eggnog, and we all (oh so briefly) smile at the sight of snowflakes. And while we drape our tinsel and wrap our gifts, most of us will watch some form of the Charles Dickens masterpiece, A Christmas Carol. My personal favorite being the Married With Children television episode entitled “It’s a Bundyful Life” which featured guest-star Sam Kinison as a screaming angel. Scrooged, starring Bill Murray, is also at the top of the list.

What you may not have ever considered is that Dickens offers us a curiously apt allegory for modern American political views. Actually, they were designed quite deliberately as a moral tale for the mid-19th century, when Dickens experienced and witnessed terrible poverty and suffering. It is no secret that he was a social activist who advocated education reform, labor changes, and support for women and children.