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The Odd Films of Christmas: A Christmas Story

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When holiday preparations are in full swing, people sometimes need a bit of background spirit to help those fun activities like wrapping gifts, decorating the tree, and eating your neighbor’s two year old fruit-cake (at least that’s how it looks, I don’t touch the stuff).

   Most people would probably put on Bing Crosby’s Old Fashioned Christmas, Elvis Presley’s Xmas in Hawaii, or maybe Barbara Streisand’s I’m Doing It for the Money Xmas Album. I, on the other hand, don’t care for such albums. I only seem to enjoy the electronica version of “Carol of the Bells” and Christmas parody songs.

   No, when it comes to Christmas spirit, I usually go to the DVD collection for my background noise. Some of these films are classics. Some are most definitely not (except in my own mind). Some of them stop me from wrapping presents and decorating so I can make some spiked hot chocolate and laugh my ass off. The one thing they all have in common is that they infect me with the Christmas spirit, for better or for worse.

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MGM

This is the story of Ralphie Parker and his season-long quest to receive a Red Ryder BB Gun for Christmas. The ensuing shenanigans with Ralphie at home and at school serves as a reminder of how endearing family can be during the holidays, no matter how weird the parts of the family are.

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MGM

No Christmas movie list is ever complete without this movie. Although it is realistically a generational movie for the children of the baby boomers, its charm carries on through the generations.

Who doesn’t remember a gift you really wanted that no one wanted to buy for you, or motherly love that turned you into a turtle on its back in the snow, or those weird footsy pajamas or ugly sweater that a relative gave you that your parents forced you to wear? Do you remember when your dad first heard you curse? How many kids wondered about their tongue sticking to a pole, just because no one had ever tried it? I remember all of that, and this movie serves as a reminder as to why I can laugh at the humiliation  and anger I had in those days.

But it’s a nice group of holiday memories, and through the casting and directing of this movie,we are brought into a wonderful film of nostalgia that the whole family can enjoy. Yes, even those of use who normally hate Christmas movies.

I give A Christmas Story 5 out of 5 awards. We hope they display them in their front window with pride.

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About Author

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Patrick began collecting a library of VHS tapes, DVDs, and CDs when he was young, and continues to build a library that could easily double as a video store and/or a revitalized Tower Records.

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