Tuesday, December 19, 2006

My Christmas Movie list

Unlike Joke, I have actually read a few books where Christmas plays a big role, such as:

Little Women. It's how the whole thing starts. "'Christmas won't be Christmas without any presents,' grumbled Jo, lying on the rug."*

Or the Little House book where they got, like, a cooky (note archaic spelling) and maybe a peppermint stick.

And The Middle Moffat, when Janey sneaks downstairs to leave her little brother a note from Santa.

And O. Henry's The Gift of the Magi.

And A Christmas Carol ... which, as is so often the case, has me sobbing. Yeah, I know. It's embarrassing. But that Victorian sentimentality reaches out and grabs me by the throat. I mean, there's always a tiny little child who might die ... and then does. Little Nell, Tiny Tim, Little Eva, Extremely Small Samantha, Undersized Ursula ... I tell you, that crap gets me EVERY TIME.

And then, there are the movies. Which I've seen so many times I watch them while I address Christmas cards. In no particular order:

1. White Christmas. Bing. The amazing Rosemary Clooney. And I'm actually glad Fred Astaire couldn't co-star with Bing as originally planned, because Danny Kaye does an amazing job. Yeah, the blackface "Mandy" number is embarrassing, and Vera Ellen's knees are frankly scarily knobby, but they start singing "We'll Follow the Old Man" and the soldiers march in and Poppy gets out the handkerchief. Because it's not just very tiny dying children that has me losing it; it's dying children OR old people heading for the poor house.

2. The Thin Man. Nothing fills me with Christmas cheer like the sight of Myrna Loy in the drop-dead mink coat and diamond watch she bought for herself, watching William Powell play with the B. B. gun she bought for him.

3. Metropolitan. Preppies enjoying Christmas break in the city.

7. Trading Places. Preppies, winter, city--but also Dan Ackroyd in a Santa suit. And Jamie Lee Curtis's boobies.

4. Moonstruck. Instead of preppies, it's about colorful Italian types + winter + New York. This isn't actually a Christmas movie, but it's the city and it's cold, so I consider it a secular Christmas movie. For the people who think Christmas isn't about religion; it's about getting together with your large, noisy, obnoxious, extended family.

5. Christmas in Connecticut. Barbara Stanwyck in a classic screwball comedy from 1945.

5. Remember the Night. Barbara Stanwyck again, in an amazing Preston Sturges film from 1940.

* This is from memory, so sue me if I'm wrong.


  1. Well, i too am glad that Fred didn't star with Bing in White Christmas, because I love Fred Astaire, and hate all the movies where Bing gets the girl and Fred comes in second. I mean, Bing is a stiff(in real life too) and Fred is just so much sexier and fun.

    I used to watch Bing's fakeo Christmas specials as a kid and wonder how the kids from his frist family(you know the ones he was estranged from) felt watching Dad pretend to be the worls's greatest father. Mary Crosby had some scary stories to tell about her childhood too.


  2. what about chevy chase in christmas vacation???

  3. FiddleDeeDee,

    If we knew what actors were really like, we'd eat our popcorn at home. Wait a minute ... that's actually what we're doing these days, isn't it?


    Get out the smelling salts. I've never seen it, or any of the NatLamp movies after Animal House.

  4. Poppy,

    You're right of course. Sorry for my anti-Bing rant. Is been a bit of a frazzled week. I loved your other movie picks.


  5. Metropolitan. Now there's a flick with class. Maybe I'll take it out tonight...

  6. Yeah, the blackface "Mandy" number is embarrassing

    "Mandy" was in "White Christmas" but not black face....Me think you have this confused with "Holiday Inn"....Consider yourself sued!

  7. Oh Oh!
    Adding The Thin Man Movies and Trading Places to our Christmas viewing list while the house is full of folk.

    Because, well, we have like 6 feet of snow here. So we? Are not going out looking at all the over-the-top lights in the 'hood while the out-of-towners are here.

  8. Oh, the Moffat family. I'd almost forgotten them. Thanks for remembering.


Gentle Readers:

For the time being, I've turned off comment moderation. Please don't spam; it's not nice.

xxx, Poppy.