Movie recommendations, like gift giving, can be a tricky business and you never know what’s going to tickle someone’s fancy or be greeted with the enthusiasm one usually reserves for that holiday fruitcake—especially when their personal favorite doesn’t make the cut. So, since Christmas is right around the corner, and our goal here at Compass is to make everyone’s holiday bright, we’re taking the time to add to last week’s list of recommendations (A Brief Guide to Christmas Movies). Here are overviews of some of the more popular fare that many of you thought we’d overlooked:
The Polar Express (2004)- Based on the classic children’s book, this one is narrated by Tom Hanks and provides us with a poignant look at the magic of Christmas and how it fades away as we get older. The animation process tends to make the characters look a little scary to some youngsters so get ready to snuggle with the little ones.
The Santa Claus (1994)- The zenith of Tim Allen’s movie career begins and ends in this cinematic explanation to the question regarding how someone becomes Santa Claus. Apparently references are not required. Mindless fun if you’ve felt something was missing from your life after they cancelled “Home Improvement”.
Home Alone (1990)- Can you believe this movie is almost 25 years old? Macaulay Culkin’s career sure can’t. Watching young Kevin outsmart the relentless assaults by the “Wet Bandits” is actually pretty darn funny. And even I get a lump in my throat when he is reunited with his family. Of course, if they made this movie today, the final scene would be of Kevin’s parents watching him being whisked away to spend Christmas with the fun guys and gals of Child Protective Services.
Fred Claus (2007)- Sibling rivalry happens in the best of families and the battling Clause brothers, played by Vince Vaughn and Paul Giamatti, are no exception. Not the greatest Christmas picture, but Vince Vaughn cracks me up, so it makes the list.
Die Hard (1988)– There is a lot of debate on whether this qualifies as a Christmas movie or not, but our financial analyst, Carter, makes a compelling case. Still the best of the franchise, and Alan Rickman steals every scene he’s in—“I could talk about industrialization and men’s fashion all day”—an action packed holiday classic if there ever was one. And really, does any phrase capture the Christmas spirit better than “Yippee-ki-yay, m*********”?
I sincerely hope that you find this appended list to be a useful guide for your holiday viewing. If your favorite Christmas favorite didn’t make the cut, remember there is always next year. Merry Christmas and happy holidays to you and yours.