It’s Day 9, Movie Lovers! 3 more days until Christmas. Today I have a different kind of movie for you and if you’ve been keeping up, good for you! Thanks for the support and I hope you’ve been enjoying the movies. If not, it’s not too late, nothing a marathon or two won’t fix. Let’s go over the list so far.
- Planes, Trains, and Automobiles
- A Christmas Story
- Office Christmas Party
- Fred Claus
- Jingle All The Way
There’s a lot of comedies on that list and can you blame me? This is a happy season and what helps spread joy? Laughter. Well today we dive into the world of animation and we find ourselves a movie for all ages. A movie that you can still walk into a Hot Topic (For all your poser nerd needs) and find plenty of paraphernalia for. I know you’ll like this movie. If you don’t, then there’s no helping you. Welcome to Day 9.
This movie can serve two purposes each year. First as a good movie to get you into the Halloween spirit and second for Christmas. The action in the film bounces between Halloween Town and Christmas Town so no matter the season, you get inundated with holiday spirit. I’m not going to go over the plot for this. You should know it. If you don’t then stop right now and go watch the movie because you’ve obviously never seen it before. It’s not an amazing film. I wouldn’t put it on my Top 10 or even Top 50 films, but it’s such a classic, such a part of the movie culture for anyone mentally present in the 90’s, that it’s a must watch.
This features the voices of Chris Sarandon (Fright Night), Catherine O’Hara (Home Alone), Glenn Shadix (Beetlejuice), Paul Rubens (Pee Wee’s Playhouse), and musical composer and former Oingo Boingo member Danny Elfman provided the singing voice for Jack.
These days, when a big animated movie comes out, they tend to get a lot of stars. Back in the day, that wasn’t always the case. Actors and voice actors were different and though they sometimes crossed over, they usually kept to themselves. It was the 90’s that started to bring us this change and this impressive cast was just foreshadowing what would come later.
Let’s face it. Christmas movies tend to hamfist the movie’s message (usually the meaning of Christmas) down our throats. We tend to be more okay with it around this time of year because that’s the point. We watch these movies to get into the spirit or keep the spirit going. This one doesn’t do that so much. For this film the message is not so much the idea of family and togetherness, despite the Jack and Sally subplot, but it’s more of a “be thankful for what you have and don’t steal.” Be thankful for what you have comes out of Jack wanting more than the constant prepping for Halloween. The don’t steal comes from, well, Jack trying to take Christmas from Sandy Claws.
The change in the movie’s message is a nice break from your standard Christmas fare. Couple that with the fact that this is a claymation movie AND it’s a musical makes this a truly unique film that breaks up the monotony of Christmas movies.
This movie has wonderfully unique characters unlike any we had seen before. Sure, we’ve seen bratty kids like Lock, Shock, and Barrel before, but done quite the same way. Jack is a flawed main character who commits a terrible crime yet thinks he’s doing the right thing. In fact, he almost pulls an Alpha Dog and has his kidnappee almost die.
Jack is so single minded in his goal that he fails to register anything else. Sally wants to get all up in his pumpkin patch, but he’s too busy to see it. He’s hurting someone he admires, but is too focused on his goal. Jack is so flawed that his turn around is momentous and hard fought occasion that’s (and I’m going to use a buzzword here) triumphant.
This is a great movie for any time of year. Even though it’s a holiday movie, it isn’t limited to just that. But it’s still a fantastic film to put on your list. This has wonderful animation, an original story, beautiful and catchy songs, and it’s so different that it comes as a welcome change to any Christmas movie list.
You’ve seen this movie and I’ve spent most of this blog preaching to the choir. But if you’re one of those odd few who have missed this movie from day one. If you have somehow gone your whole deprived life without seeing this movie, then you fix that right now. This is the perfect film for anyone’s Christmas movie list and it belongs in my 12 Day’s of Flicks. This should be the second time this year you’re watching The Nightmare Before Christmas and if for some reason you skipped it for Halloween, then that’s okay. You can watch it now.
I’ll see you tomorrow.