Classic holiday movie reviews

The Channels Art Pages | STAFF REVIEW

Illustration

Ali Rybczyk

Illustration

JESSIKA KARLSSON, CHANNELS STAFF

“A Christmas Story” (1983)

A Christmas Story” is a beloved holiday classic with its perks, however the movie mostly comes off as cheesy and many times falls flat with elementary humor and overused clichés.

Despite that this movie is family-friendly, I hardly think I would’ve enjoyed it growing up considering the amount of plain impressions I felt throughout the film.

Since I’m in my twenties and this is the first time I’ve seen this, many of the situations that occur feel abstract and difficult for me to relate to. Since it has never been a true classic for me, the movie doesn’t make me sentimental or reminiscent about my childhood.

However, I can see why others might have found comfort and comedy relief while watching. The main aspect of the movie is to emphasize the significance of Christmas for children. Appreciating genuine family moments in life instead of material items is a concept derived from watching this movie.

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“The Nightmare Before Christmas” (1993)

The Nightmare Before Christmas” is a stop-motion musical characterized with dark humor and filled with sarcastic anecdotes and satire.

This non-conventional holiday movie features numerous horror movie elements but still addresses the classic example of the importance of Christmas as an essential holiday for all.

The idea for the movie flourished from a poem written by Tim Burton, and truly captures the essence of the moviemaker. I’ve always admired Burton’s work and this one is no exception— which includes many of his rough and dark traits in film.

Despite the fact that Disney released the movie, I personally don’t think that it’s suitable for children with its many elements of horror and fear. Even though I’m in my twenties, there are scenes throughout the movie that still disgust and frighten me.

But besides the nightmare aspect of the movie, the plot also addresses common social issues. I could relate to the struggle of the protagonist as he dealt with feelings of exclusion and without the capacity of moving forward in life, which is crucial for evolving as a person. The film also shows that sometimes people must explore new paths in life to truly appreciate what they already have.

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“Love Actually” (2003)

Love Actually” is a British romantic comedy and a true feel-good movie that deals with the subject of love in all forms.

The plot follows nine different intertwined stories during Christmas and contains everything from first love at a young age to the prohibited and incredibly cliché relationship between a married man and his new beautiful secretary.

The movie is characterized by the stereotypical dry-yet-lovable British humor that makes me laugh out loud on several occasions with its perky jokes and clever sarcasm.

Despite the film’s main theme of love, the coziness and warm feelings derived from Christmas are constantly featured in the scenery, which makes it a true holiday movie.

This increases the sense of what I think is the main message of the film— Christmas is all about appreciating loved ones.

The numerous plots of the movie are not particularly complex but rather shallow. The simplicity emphasizes the many difficulties with everyday situations that most people can relate to. There are moments of sorrow when I can almost feel the characters’ pain as they suffer from broken hearts or loss.

Over all it’s a delightful and romantic comedy that left me joyous. It also reminded me to cherish my family and friends and appreciate that ‘love actually’ is all around.

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