Saturday, December 24, 2011

Devon #9 = A Christmas Story

I could say that A Christmas story is the best Christmas movie ever made. But this has been said before. I could say that it succeeds because it understands human nature, but I would just be repeating Roger Ebert. I could even just say that the triple dog dare scene makes me laugh every time, but I would just be repeating the third Harold and Kumar. My point is, everyone loves this movie (save this guy), and the point has been made. It is awesome. From the anecdotes of Jean Shepherd, who wrote the original book, and narrates the film, to the many subplots that each offer a very funny payoff, to the charm of each of the tiny, quiet scenes, like the mother and father sitting down on Christmas eve and just watching the snow fall, every element is legendary. More than any of its peers, more than Vacation, or Scrooge, or Charlie Brown (not a fan), this movie has an emotional connection for me. It draws me back into a sense of being a kid, of greed and selfishness offset by innocence and wonder. It's this movie that makes me remember what it feels like to wake up at an ungodly hour screaming for presents, as much as I remember being joyous and happy that Santa had visited. As I grew older, this effect changed. What once made me miss the Christmas of my childhood now makes me excited to give to others. In the end, that's all that is left to discuss about the film, beyond its humor and its colour. All that's left is our own experiences. If you've never seen it, try it out. I wont say it's for everyone, but personally, I believe that it's perfect.

Well, that was oddly sentimental. So here's some strange things about Bob Clark; eleven years after a christmas story he directed a sequel, featuring an all new cast, called It Runs In The Family, or My Summer Story. While many reviewers hated it, entertainment weekly said in their review that it improved on the original.  Clark also help to invent the slasher genre with Black Christmas in 1974. So that's awesome. However, he also directed Porkey's, Baby Geniuses, Superbabies, and my new favorite bad title ever: The Karate Dog, which, sadly, featured the voice of Chevy Chase. Despite all of this, the man was a visionary in horror and still made the best Christmas story ever. Which is pretty damn cool.

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