Merry Christmas, Movie House! 25 Days of Christmas Day 25: A Christmas Story

I can’t believe there was once a time when there was Christmas without A Christmas Story. It’s a family tradition these days to watch it. It airs 24 hours on TBS. Whether you like it or not, you’ll end up watching at least a scene of this film during Christmas. Truth be told, I can’t think of a time where I have watched the film the entire way through. I’ve seen all of the film but not at once. That 24 hour marathon screws with my viewing of the film. I know I can always catch certain parts of it during the day. The film has a pretty basic story. Our lead character is Ralphie. He wants a Red Ryder BB gun for Christmas, but everyone thinks he will shoot his eye out. It’s classic. A must watch for the holiday season. I’m going to list my top five favorite parts of the film.

1. Evil Santa – This is my favorite scene in the film. Ralphie and his brother, Randy, go to see Santa Claus at the mall. Santa and his elves are the meanest people you’ll ever see. The Santa says, “Ho, ho, ho” nonstop like a crazy man. Most kids scream when they get to him (including Randy) and the elf throws them down the slide. Ralphie can’t think of what to say to Santa and Santa suggests a football. Ralphie gets thrown down the slide, but he stops himself and pulls himself back up the slide. He tells Santa what he really wants (Red Ryder BB gun), but Santa tells him he will shoot his eye out. Santa then puts his foot on Ralphie’s face and sends him down the slide. What a dick. I’d never go to that Santa again.

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2. Pink Bunny – Ralphie’s aunt tends to give Ralphie bad presents every Christmas since she thinks that Ralphie is four and a girl. This Christmas Ralphie got a pink bunny costume. He doesn’t want to wear it but his mother makes him. She’s worse than the Santa Claus. It’s so embarrassing when you see Ralphie come down the stairs in that bunny outfit. His brother laughs at him while his mom thinks it is cute. His father has a bit of a heart and lets him take it off. The father is not a dick like Santa.

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3. Ralphie Goes Mad – A bully had been picking on Ralphie and his friends for some time. He’s a red haired kid named Farkus. You might remember him getting killed in Freddy vs. Jason. Farkus is often seen making fun of Ralphie and being mean. One day Ralphie finally snaps and it is glorious. Ralphie just beats the shit out of him. He tackles him and punches him nonstop. Ralphie goes into some sort of trance where the only thing he thinks about is punching Farkus. His mom finally stops him, but it was so worth it.

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4. Leg Lamp – Ralphie’s dad wins  some sort of contest and gets the best prize ever. He gets a leg lamp! It comes in a box that says it’s fragile. His dad pronounces it as Frageely and thinks it’s Italian. A classic moment in the film. I bought my dad a mini leg lamp last year for Christmas. The poor leg lamp in this film doesn’t quite fair as well since it gets broken. The mean mom character broke it since she was always jealous of it! That poor father!

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5. Triple Dog Dare – Who could forget this iconic scene in the film! While at recess, Ralphie’s friend, Flick, gets into an argument with another friend named Schwartz about whether or not your tongue could get stuck to the pole in the freezing cold. It gets serious when dares are thrown into the mix. The biggest dare is the triple dog dare. Schwartz even skips the triple dare to go straight for the triple dog dare. Flick had no choice but to stick his tongue on the pole at that point. He does it and his tongue does indeed get stuck. The fire department is called to save him after all the kids left him outside.

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It’s a great film with so many nostalgic moments for me. Go watch it if you haven’t yet today. You might be able to catch the end on TBS right about now. You can see the dogs eat the turkey and force them to eat at the Chinese restaurant. I had fun writing these reviews for 25 days. I may do this again next year. Merry Christmas and have a happy New Year!

Merry Christmas, Movie House! 25 Days of Christmas Day 24: Christmas Eve Smorgasbord

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Merry Christmas Eve to everyone out there! Tomorrow is the magical day known as Christmas. I should go to sleep right now just so I can get up in the morning to unwrap presents. I’m currently watching It’s A Wonderful Life on NBC. A classic film that I watch every year on Christmas Eve. I figured I’d take the time today to just talk about everything I’ve seen today that had to do with Christmas. I didn’t finish or pay attention to a lot of these films, but I’ll make note of them just because I can.

Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer

I caught a little bit of this one. It’s based on a song of the same name. It reminds me of that scene in Santa’s Slay where Goldberg laughs about the grandpa being run over by a reindeer. I have nothing else to say. I just wanted to make a Santa’s Slay reference.

Scooby Doo Christmas

I love Scooby Doo. The good people at Hanna Barbera never let me down when watching Scooby Doo as a kid. I didn’t catch much of this special. I recall a big snow monster, but that’s about it. I wouldn’t mind watching it some day to get all the information on it.

Batman Begins

….has nothing to do with Christmas. Syfy chose the wrong Batman movie. They should have went with Batman Returns.

Star Trek: The Motion Picture

….also has nothing to do with Christmas. Did the Syfy channel not get the memo about it being Christmas Eve?

The Best of the Joy of Painting

Bob Ross painted a nice picture and he played with squirrels. It had nothing to do with Christmas, but I never turn down watching Bob Ross.

A Fairly Odd Christmas

I’m still not used to seeing The Fairly OddParents in Live Action. I didn’t follow the plot very much, but it’s neat seeing the cartoon characters in live action. It seems more faithful to the television show than some of the actual crap cartoon adaptations I’ve seen come out. (Dragonball Evolution)

It’s a SpongeBob Christmas

Only caught bits and pieces of this too. Christmas Eve is a busy time. I don’t always get to watch everything. It was cool that it was in stopmotion though like the old Rankin Bass specials. I’m definitely going to try and watch this one day.

The Santa Clause

I watched the most of this one. It’s a classic movie starring Tim Allen who accidentally kills Santa. He puts on his suit and that makes him the big guy. He doesn’t want to accept being Santa Claus at first, but he eventually comes around after dealing with his ex wife and Judge Reinhold. His son is the one who truly inspires him to take the role of Santa Claus. It’s a classic Christmas film that I try to watch every year.

The Santa Clause 2

Not as good as the original, but I watched a little bit of it. It’s A Wonderful Life takes priority over it. I only watched Santa make the clone version of himself to take his job while he finds his wife. I don’t try to watch this one every year, but I’ll give it a glance. I’ve still never seen the 3rd one.

I’m going to finish watching It’s A Wonderful Life now. I might do a review of that tomorrow or something else. I’m leaning towards something else. We already know it’s a classic. Not much more to say about it. Merry Christmas Eve!

Merry Christmas, Movie House! 25 Days of Christmas Day 23: Die Hard and The Year Without a Santa Claus

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You know there’s not much in common with Die Hard and The Year Without a Santa Claus. They share no common characters. There are no terrorists in The Year Without a Santa Claus. No reindeers dressed like dogs in Die Hard. The only real similarity is that they have some themes of Christmas. So why review them both at the same time? They were both on TV today. It’s that simple. The two don’t mix and match well, but I’m going to give it a whirl as Kevin McCallister would say.

The Plots

John McClane is invited to a Christmas party by his wife who he’s been having trouble with lately. Santa is also having some trouble since he thinks nobody believes in him anymore and that there is no need for Christmas. Both John McClane and Santa run into some problems as time progresses. Our favorite Hogwarts professor, Hans Gruber, is trying to take over Mr. Takagi’s big building. He has some get rich quick scheme. People are dying including Takagi and John McClane has to do something about it. Santa has to find where the elves, Jingle and Jangle, went so he can retrieve the reindeer named Vixen. Vixen has been taken to the pound, so it’s like she is taken hostage and Santa has to rescue her. The films have parallels after all! John McClane gets help in this movie from Carl Winslow. Carl hasn’t lost his mind dealing with Urkel yet, and he’s on a mission to save John McClane’s ass. Santa is also getting help from a little boy named Iggy. He didn’t really believe in Santa just like Carl at first with John, but they both come around. There’s some skeptics on both sides. The principal from Breakfast Club keeps complaining to Carl Winslow about the job John McClane is doing in the same way the mayor is doubting Santa Claus. John’s wife, Holly, tries to talk with the villains to get them to allow some things, and Hans Gruber is nice enough to comply. The same happens with Mrs. Claus. She has to deal with the Miser Brothers. It took some time to convince the Snow and Heat Misers to help, but a talk with Mother Nature straightened them out. John McClane eventually kills all the terrorists one by one in the same way Santa convinces everyone to believe in him one by one. They both get one last bit of help from Carl and Iggy. Carl shoots the last bad guy and Iggy helps other kids mail Santa. They both even end with Christmas songs!

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Final Thoughts

Clearly these two films have more in common than I imagined. It’s like watching the same film! I mean nobody dies in The Year Without a Santa Claus, but what does die is kids not believing in Santa. The parallels do not go unnoticed. I’m sure the Die Hard writers had The Year Without a Santa Claus in their mind when getting this movie made. Both are classics, so I suggest everyone should watch them in the next couple days. You won’t regret it. Look for the similarities!

Merry Christmas, Movie House! 25 Days of Christmas Day 22: Frosty the Snowman

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You know I love me some Rankin Bass. These Christmas specials defined my childhood right up there with the Mighty Ducks films. They are must watches every Christmas. Today I watched Frosty the Snowman. It’s like Jack where a snowman comes to life. Frosty doesn’t kill people or is Batman though. This Rankin Bass special is a little different since it isn’t claymation like the others. This one is done in animation. It’s not quite as cool because of that, but it’s still a solid effort.

The Plot

A bunch of kids are building a snowman on the first snow of the season which fell on Christmas Eve. Karen, the main girl, decides to call him Frosty after bad names like Howard and Oatmeal. An evil magician, Professor Hinkle, is not a very good magician so he throws his hat out. The kids put the hat on Frosty and he comes to life. “Happy birthday!” That’s what Frosty says when he comes to life. He says it every time in every Frosty special except for that horrid Frosty Returns. The magician takes the hat back,but his rabbit named Hocus Pocus gives it back to the kids. Frosty is back alive and he’s all singing and dancing. It’s fun! It’s getting hot though so he has to go to the North Pole. They jump on a train and for some reason Frosty makes Karen go with him. Hocus Pocus also goes. Karen gets too cold and Frosty has to make her warm. That damn Hinkle is still causing trouble though. He locks Frosty in a greenhouse and that melts him. Karen is sad and cries over Frosty the Puddle. Hocus Pocus has recruited Santa Claus to help out. Paul Frees is voicing our Santa in this special. It gets confusing sometimes since there are different Santa voice actors in Rankin Bass like Mickey Rooney. Santa just opens up the door and Frosty comes back to life since Christmas snow magic or something. Santa forces Professor Hinkle to write why he shouldn’t be bad or else he won’t get presents. Santa takes Karen home and he takes Frosty to the North Pole. That’s okay because Frosty will be back again some day. He’s got a sequel, a crossover and a crappy John Goodman not really a sequel to come back for when he returns.

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Final Thoughts

I actually fell asleep a little bit, but that’s just from me being tired. I still enjoy watching the film. I love the cop who swallows his whistle. I love Hinkle saying, “Messy, messy, messy.” The song is always wonderful to hear. I love Jackie Vernon as Frosty the Snowman. Jimmy Durante is great as the narrator. It’s just a magical special. It really brings me into the Christmas spirit even if I fell asleep watching it this time. Go watch it if you haven’t this holiday season!

Merry Christmas, Movie House! 25 Days of Christmas Day 21: That 70s’ Show – Winter

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I was wrong about there being a 7th season Christmas episode of Boy Meets World. It was actually a surprise birthday party for Alan that just happened to have Santa Claus in it. My mistake. I figured I would review that last That 70s Show Christmas episode instead. Nothing much has changed in Point Place since the last Christmas episode. Donna’s hair being blond is the only significant change. Thank God there wasn’t a Christmas episode during the last season with no Kelso and Eric. I say we get started. Winter by that That 70s’ Show!

The Plot

So Kelso brings to Eric’s basement a bunch of presents for needy kids from the police station. They of course open up all the presents and want to keep them for themselves. They even launch an Evel Knievel stunt cycle at Fez’s head. They also fly a Funyun into Kelso’s mouth by toy helicopter. Kitty is supposed to lead a Ladies of Point Place Christmas party until some bitchy woman takes it over from her. Jackie is upset that Hyde would rather play with toys than go to the party with her. Kitty is given the job at the party of giving out the presents to all the children. The problem is that when Red goes to get the gifts, they have been stolen. Red is sent home to find stuff for the kids when he catches the guys downstairs playing with the toys. Eric said he did because all he got was raincoats for Christmas instead of an Evel Knievel stunt cycle. It turns out Red did get him one of them once, but Red broke it before giving it to him. The guys agree to take the presents to the party for the kids. They get to the roof and there is a chimney. Hyde says once of them has to go down it. Eric volunteers and falls down the chimney. Hyde said he saw a backdoor though and they’d take the presents through there instead leaving Eric down the chimney. They bring the presents in and Kitty wants to know where Eric is. Hyde asks Kitty and Donna where the chimney went to and Kitty says the bakery. Donna figures to go find Eric there. The presents are revealed and all the kids are happy. Hyde and Jackie have a bit of a falling out though, so that sucks. Things go well for Bob though since he’s apparently hooked up with that mean woman running the party. The woman was not happy that Kitty was made the head person for the Valentine’s Day party. Hyde gets them all a present near the end when they all get high. The episode ends with Eric getting a raincoat for Christmas and the Evel Knievel stunt cycle. The problem is the stunt cycle is broken because Red played with it.

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Final thoughts

Another funny That 70s’ Show Christmas episode. This show really knew how to do Christmas specials outside of that one I didn’t care for too much. It had great moments from all the characters. I’d say the best parts are with Kelso and probably Red. I enjoyed the flashback with Red breaking Evel Knievel and Kelso’s shenanigans are always funny. The Hyde/Jackie stuff is a bit of a downer, but like the BMW episode yesterday it advances the plot. I’d recommend this episode to anybody who loves Christmas and That 70s Show.

Merry Christmas, Movie House! 25 Days of Christmas Day 20: Boy Meets World – Santa’s Little Helpers

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You know I still haven’t gone Christmas shopping yet. I’m a terrible person, but I am back with another Boy Meets World Christmas episode to review. This episode adds an “s” to the end of the first season episode I reviewed to create a brand new sixth season episode. What has changed since the season 5 Boy Meets World Christmas episode? Cory and Topanga are engaged. Everyone is in college. Rachel has joined the cast. Shawn and Angela broke up. Well, they weren’t actually together before the last Christmas episode I reviewed so they got together and then broke up. I think we are all caught up so will this be the best BMW Christmas? I don’t know!

The Plot

Mr. Feeny really seems in the holiday spirit, but the janitor throws away his Christmas tree. “Happy non-denominational holidays!” Eric has been hired to be Santa Claus and he has made Rachel and Jack his Mrs. Claus and elfboy. Cory invites Shawn to his place for Christmas, but what he doesn’t know is that Topanga invited Angela. This could create problems. Cory and Topanga talk about it, but Cory sees this as an opportunity to put them back together. Cory is really funny in this episode. Eric gets into the holiday spirit as Santa, but a bus full of orphans comes in to make Eric’s job a little tougher. He starts to give presents to all the kids. Eric, Jack, and Rachel go out and buy shit for all those kids. Eric even gives Jack and Rachel his dad’s credit card to buy things.. I’m sure Alan is going to be none too pleased with that. Cory isn’t being too subtle about trying to get Shawn and Angela back together. He takes them to couples only skating and he makes them string popcorn together. They both know what he’s trying to do. Shawn and Angela kiss under the mistletoe adding more drama to this episode. Cory tells Shawn that Angela is still in love with him (she told him in another episode) and Cory also tells Shawn that he knows he still loves her (Topanga told him earlier after Shawn told her in an earlier episode). Shawn talks to Angela and Cory buggles things up more by telling her that Shawn still loves her. Shawn and Angela leave and go to the student union. Shawn says he’s not ready to love, and Angela ends it for good (until season 7). Eric has given all the presents away. He’s even stolen presents from his house to do it. A boy named Tommy comes to Eric and asks him for parents. Eric doesn’t know what to do about this. He even tries talking to God wondering why God sent him this kid. Eric says he will do what he can to make this boy happy. Back at the Matthews house, they open presents to reveal that Eric has left them cards saying their presents have been donated to orphans. Alan is not happy about losing is drill. Eric brings Tommy to the house and asks if it’s alright if he spends Christmas with them. Alan asks Tommy if he got his drill. It’s a nice little moment though that Tommy gets to stay. Another funny part is Mr. Feeny opening a box for a breast pump, but that’s for Amy and not him. Feeny also doesn’t get to put his Wise Santa ornament on the tree which was tradition. I noticed the tree isn’t aluminum in this episode! Damn you, Topanga! Feeny does read A Christmas Carol to close out the relationship. Right when he says Marley is dead as a doornail, Shawn and Topanga walk through the door and that line perfectly described their relationship.

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Final Thoughts

It’s not the happiest of Christmas episodes. The Shawn and Angela plot is totally depressing even if Cory is being funny throughout all of it. The Eric plot is also pretty depressing after it started as heartwarming. It ends heartwarming with Tommy staying with them for Christmas and Eric agreeing to be like a big brother to Tommy on weekends. There is another sad episode later in the season where Eric does try to become Tommy’s dad. Mr. Feeny even becomes depressing in this episode since his tree gets thrown away and he doesn’t get to put up his Wise Santa ornament. This episode is just a real downer. It has funny moments with Cory and Eric, but it doesn’t quite put you in the Christmas spirit. It’s probably at the bottom of my favorite Boy Meets World Christmas episodes, but it does advance the plot well. Not every Christmas can be happy so it’s more realistic in that way. I do believe there is still one more Boy Meets World Christmas to go! We’ll see when I get to that.

Merry Christmas, Movie House! 25 Days of Christmas Day 19: Big Bad Beetleborgs – Christmas Bells and Phasm’s Spells

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Ah, we’ve reached the bottom of the Saban barrel. After watching all the Christmas specials of Power Rangers and even one for V.R. Troopers, I just had to find a Big Bad Beetleborgs episode. As I said during the V.R. Troopers episode review, Big Bad Beetleborgs was another attempt by Saban to capitalize off the success of Power Rangers. It lasted a couple seasons, but like V.R. Troopers it never reached the same success as Power Rangers. I watched the show as a kid. I had a few of the action figures. I even had all of Flabber’s mansion. Flabber is this blue guy that helps the Beetleborgs that kind of looks like Jay Leno. Funny thing is the people who lived in that mansion had a good run in my toy playing days. They were all great heel jobbers to my wrestling toys. I couldn’t tell you how many times Stone Cold Steve Austin hit Blue Jay Leno with a Stone Cold Stunner and eliminated him from the Royal Rumble. I’ve put this off long enough. Let’s talk Big Bad Beetleborgs.

The Plot

Well, the bad guys don’t like this new Christmas stuff they are seeing so the main bad guy tells them to steal everything. That’s exactly what they do. I should point out that one of the bad guys sounds exactly like Demidevimon from Digimon. Good old Saban reusing voice actors. Beetleborgs differs from Power Rangers because there are three kids as the heroes instead of teenagers or adults playing teenagers. I don’t really like that difference in the same way I didn’t like Justin in Power Rangers Turbo. Kids don’t want to see other kids as superheroes. I hated it then and I hate it now. So what else is in this episode? There’s some rich kids who are probably the Bulk and Skull type characters of this show. They’re actually the best characters so again it’s similar to Power Rangers. I should mention the mansion place that Blue Jay Leno lives out also features the Universal movie monsters. There’s Frankenstein’s Monster, Dracula, the Wolfman, and the Mummy. They all have names, but that’s what I always called them. The kids find out the bad guys are stealing stuff and they actually morph into action. Finally, a Saban Christmas special where the heroes transform! They take care of the bad guys pretty quickly and even give them Christmas presents. The town is saved and even the rich kids are being nice. Flabber does a bad Santa impersonation and there’s plenty of bad singing during the episode. The episode also has a running gag of Flabber not saying Christmas right.

Final Analysis

This was pretty painful to sit through. As cheesy and silly as Power Rangers and V.R. Troopers were, it was never this bad. This show is way overboard on the cheese. It doesn’t help that the acting isn’t that great either. Some of these kid actors are just dreadful. No emotion in their voices at all. They are almost as bad as Troy from Power Rangers Megaforce. So the episode does its Christmas job, but it’s not really worth your time. A young kid might enjoy it. I must have enjoyed something about the show when I was a kid. I’m assuming it was the actual Beetleborg fights and not the kid actors. That’s one thing Power Rangers had going is that I always remembered the goofy non morphed scenes where the Rangers were being normal teenagers. The kids on this show aren’t worth my time to care about them. Maybe if I watched it from the beginning, but I doubt it. Go watch the Power Rangers Christmas episodes and even the V.R. Troopers one instead.