Christmas Special

I’ve decided to take a break from regular blogging for the next few weeks.  But before then, a Friday list of some worthy Christmas movie choices near and dear to my heart…and two that should be avoided at all costs.

  • A Christmas Carol starring Patrick Stewart (1999): A movie about Christmas starring Captain Picard?  What’s not to like?  More faithful to the source material, I think, than some other versions…and a lot of fun.  I particularly like the scene where he stops into church on Christmas morning.  
  • An American Christmas Carol starring Henry Winkler (1979): My father’s favorite version.  Set in the United States during the Depression, it is a unique adaptation of the tale…and powerful in its own right.
  • A Muppet Christmas Carol starring Michael Caine & Muppets (1992):  Just a lot of fun.  Yes, I’ve only seen it once.  But how can you not like it?
  • It’s a Wonderful Life (1946):  Perhaps the ultimate in Christmas films.  A truly American take on Dickens’ masterpiece that is as heartwarming as it is epic.
  • A Charlie Brown Christmas (1965):  What’s the real meaning of Christmas?  Leave it to Charlie Brown and the gang to let us know, year after year.

And then there are (at least) two Christmas specials to be avoided at all costs:

  • “Merry Extraordinary Christmas” episode of Glee (2011):  With a lifeless plot and relatively empty rendition of holiday songs, one of the worst moments in Christmas history I’ve ever seen or heard.  I might be exaggerating a little, but I did feel like my soul was dying while watching this stinker.  In an homage to truly horrible TV specials of Christmas past, Glee made the very unfunny choice to be so…unfunny.  It’s on Hulu right now, and you can see it for yourself.  But I beg you: don’t.  It’s not worth it!
  • The Star Wars Holiday Special (1978):  A special so bad that it gets its own Wikipedia entry.  You might think: Star Wars?  I like that.  How bad could this be?  Very bad, my friends.  Strange guest stars like Bea Arthur and Jefferson Starship, an entire segment filmed in the Wookie language, and more nonsense than you can shake a stick at.  My soul actually did die at some point during my viewing of this montrosity.  Take a look, and shudder:

Merry Christmas, friends!  I may be posting a little here and there over the next two weeks, but won’t be returning to my regular schedule until the new year.


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