What’s your favorite holiday movie? If you answered, “It’s a Wonderful Life” due to its heartwarming tale of community or “A Christmas Story” for its nostalgic look at childhood, congratulations!
You are wrong and don’t have as good taste in movies as I do.
I don’t know about you, but upon my 34th viewing of “A Christmas Story” at holiday time, I thought that it might be time for a change.
I’m sick and tired of watching the same old movies on the same old TBS marathons. Both “It’s a Wonderful Life” and “A Christmas Story” are marketed as classics and relevant, but I’d rather watch other movies that have more content than the clichéd notion that “having a house is nice” and ask questions more original than “wasn’t childhood funny?”
I’m talking about the new classics. And not stuff like “Home Alone” or “Elf.”
How the former is presented as an acceptable movie for children to watch is beyond me.
Let’s not forget that Kevin, played by Macaulay Culkin, is forgotten on a family trip, setting the whole plot in motion. The main message I get from the movie is that it’s okay for a neglected child to turn to violence to stop robbers from getting material goods at the extreme risk of life and limb.
What horrible parents!
If I have kids, the first thing I’m going to do is not forget them on an overseas trip and the second thing is to raise them not to be such rampant little capitalists that they try to kill two grown men so they can keep their bicycles. I think that’s a good life lesson, but apparently most people don’t.
“Elf” isn’t much better.
Will Ferrell’s character gets illegally adopted by a bunch of elves and Santa Claus. Do we want to send the message that human trafficking is okay? Really?
The “parents” of Will Ferrell’s character, Buddy, are so morally bankrupt that they won’t attempt to give the baby back to the true father and don’t even let his father know that he has a child because he is on the bad side of some arbitrary list that a group of human traffickers and a bearded hermit have.
Yes, I agree: let’s let the Unabomber and the bad guys from “Taken” decide how children get adopted. That sounds good.
Instead, let’s look at two movies that you should be watching: “Die Hard” and “Lethal Weapon.”
The first two installments of “Die Hard” are both heartwarming tales of family triumphing over external force. Furthermore, the first is one of the strongest anti-materialist movies ever made.
Spoiler alert: in the last scene, take note as to what has to be let go in order for the story to be resolved.
When Hans Gruber, played by Alan Rickman, falls to his death, he does so because he is holding on to the gold watch that Holly McClane got for her promotion.
Because Gruber is unable to resolve his wont for money, and Holly is, the latter survives while the former perishes.
The second “Die Hard” is similarly great.
What begins as a man picking up his wife from the airport ends with him willing to do anything to save her from harm, once again from the overly material, corrupt, antagonistic army soldiers.
Likewise, watch “Lethal Weapon” instead of “A Christmas Carol.”
“Lethal Weapon” is all about how friendship and family can take a man from the brink of suicide to having a better life.
Having lost his wife to an accident, Martin Riggs gets a new partner, a new case and a new lease on life as he finally finds another person who he can bond with.
So please, if you’re going to watch a movie this holiday season, watch something the whole family can appreciate—like the aptly named “Die Hard 2: Die Harder.”