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We’ve all been there. You’re full of turkey, spuds, ham, gravy the begrudgingly eaten brussel sprout, followed by ice cream, sprinkles and the cup of tea or whiskey, depending on your preference. You sit down in your favourite chair, take out the TV Guide. You grumble and you say, “Same oul shite, Coronation Street, Eastenders, Fair f***in’ city, Strictly Dancing On Me Arse. F*** this, I’m turning on a dvd….”. Well, dear reader, sit down and relax the kecks. I am here to guide you through what I feel are the five perfect films to watch over the festive period. We start in a building, well a plaza to be more precise:
Die Hard (1989)
Woah, hold the pony there Murphy. Die Hard, a chrsitmas film? Are you high? No, I am not. Let’s weigh up the evidence here. First off, the film takes place over the FESTIVE PERIOD!!, a blinding clue to anyone with a pair of eyes. Another one occurs when McClane is coming through the airport, he’s carrying a giant teddy bear. Now, it’s never fully explained but one could safely say he’s bringing it home to his young daughter. I know crazy right. That poor German terrorist that gets it in the lift is left with a sly remark on his jumper, “Now I have a machine gun, ho-ho-ho.”
When McClane lures Gruber into a false sense of security near the film’s climax, he straps his weapon to his back using fun festive tape. Then as our hero, John and his put upon wife, Bonnie leave the Nakatomi Plaza, they are met with a lovely white blanket of Christmassy snow. To add to the festive cheer, as they are carted away on the back of what looks like a golf cart, Dean Martin’s velvet tones ease into ear shot and he croons, “Oh, the weather outside is frightful, but the fire is so delightful.. Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow.” Die Hard, one of the best Christmas films ever, motherf***er!
Gremlins (1984)
The first Gremlins film is a black comedy set against a Christmas time back drop. The plot revolves around Billy’s (Zach Gilligan) father searching for a Christmas present for his teenage son. He stumbles across a creature called a Mogwai in a small antiques shop in Chinatown. The owner of the store warns Billy’s father that owning one is too much responsibility and refuses to sell it to him. But the owner’s grandson sells the Mogwai saying the family needs the money. And he gives him three rules for the Mogwai. Never expose ti to light, never get it wet and never ever feed it after midnight.
Gizmo gets accidentally wet when brought home and he produces five Gremlins. The most dominant is Stripe, who for some reason despises Gizmo. They go about rampaging the city and tearing up the place. The climax of the film takes place in a Montgomery Ward store and Gizmo lets up the blinds and this allows the light in that kills Stripe. The store owner returns to claim Gizmo claiming that the world is not ready for the Mogwai, a symbol for the over zealousness of the west to have material goods over the Christmas period perhaps? Could be, either way if you get one this Christmas, don’t let it get wet!!
Indiana Jones And The Temple of Doom (1984)
Ok, there’s no real Christmas signs, symbolism or indeed back stories in this film but if I don’t see it at Christmas I feel it is a waste of a Christmas Day. So there, and It’s A Wonderful Life doesn’t have Indiana Jones in it….
National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (1989)
Hey, there’s that guy that used to be really funny and in great films. What’s he at now, oh yea he’s quitting his show because he’s an arse. Ladies and gentlemen I give you Chevy Chase. The cornerstone of this popular franchise and he also made Fletch. I liked it. This is the third film in the Lampoon Series and was written by John Hughes. And it has the distinction of being my favourite one in the series.
You know the story Clark wants to give his family the perfect Christmas. But he keeps getting obstacles placed in his way, namely a wayward Christmas tree, lights that will not light despite best efforts, a family bout of hypothermia, warring in laws and breaking the window of smug yuppie next door neighbours with a tree. Oh yea and Cousin Eddie, the greatest comic character ever created in my humble opinion. Take a bow Dennis Quaid, never has dog splatters been so funny.
The family end up warring, Eddie and his hick family tear up the sewage and destroy the front lawn, the lights finally work and Clark gets his holiday bonus, thanks to Eddie driving across town and kidnapping his boss. Uncle Lewis throws a discarded cigar down a storm drain, igniting the methane gas leaked thanks to the sewage Eddie ripped up and blows a Santa decoration onto the lawn. The family stand around as Aunt Bethany sings the Star Spangled Banner and Clark realises he has got his perfect Christmas. A sweet, yet slightly mentally unhinged story…. Just what you need at Christmas!
Charlie And The Chocolate Factory (1971)
This is for my money the only film to watch at Christmas. Think about it, songs, chocolate, a warm message about family and greed is not welcomed, it is punished, all the ingredients for festive cheer. I won’t bore you with the plot details as I’m sure you are all well aware at this stage. The film is fun, bright, sad in all the right places and leaves you walking away with a smile on your face and a warm heart. That could also be all the chocolate though…
So there you go, a rundown of what I feel are perfect Christmas films. A very merry Christmas to you and yours!

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Written by thepanch

February 7, 2013 at 3:04 pm

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