Pea Bo’s Top 5 Christmas Films
Christmas is nearly upon us. This can only mean one thing. Awesome films. That’s right, sit back, get a glass of any booze you want (its only 9am you say? Why aren’t you already drunk??), and turn on your TV. There are a countless amount of classics to enjoy this festive month. Here I’ve listed my favourite Christmas films. “But some of them aren’t about Christmas, they’re just set during it”, I hear you say as you pause from fingerbanging your sister. How about I don’t tell your parents you’re a dick, and you just agree with everything I say? PEA BO WILL BLACKMAIL YOU IF YOU DEFY ME.
Die Hard (1988) Dir. John McTiernan
I have talked about this film a lot and there is good reason to. There’s Bruce Willis, for one. Actually, that’s it. Bruce Willis. Tempted to move onto the next film but I need to fill up this space with more words. For those who have been busy fingerbanging your sister and haven’t seen this masterpiece, it’s about John McClane, a New York cop who goes to visit his estranged wife in LA. You see, their relationship is on the rocks as she moved there with the kids to further her career. Being the bitter bastard McClane is, he doesn’t move with her but instead holds a strong resentment against her for ‘ruining the family’. Anyway, it’s Christmas, so he goes to visit her and the kids when suddenly he finds himself in the middle of a hostage takeover in her company’s building. THE GERMANS ARE HERE. Led by Hans Gruber (Alan Rickman), the terrorists take hold of the building, unaware that McClane, a tough cop, is in the building, running around and ruining their plans. There’s one scene where he kills one of them, takes them down on the lift wearing a Santa hat with ‘NOW I HAVE A MACHINE GUN HO HO HO’ written on him. THERE. CHRISTMAS. HAPPY NOW?
Muppet Christmas Carol (1992) Dir. Brian Henson
If you want a break from action and explosions, I give you the Muppet Christmas Carol. A film brought to you by the Jim Henson group (after Jim’s death) about the lovable Muppets we have all grown fond of. Starring Michael Caine as Scrooge, the Muppets follow him on his adventure through the visitation of three spirits. We all know the story, but the clever (and cuddly) thing about this film is the addition of little felt aliens or animals bopping around our screen. What’s better than hearing the classic Christmas story of Scrooge narrated by Gonzo and Rizzo? Nothing, that’s what. It is all Muppety goodness, like a warm cup of hot cocoa, but Muppety. I wonder what Muppets taste like? Hmm, felt can’t be nice. Maybe if you caramelise them. Has anyone thought of this? I have. I don’t know why. Probably as filler.
Home Alone (1990) Dir. Chris Columbus
Christmas is not allowed without this film. Our little innocent Macaulay Culkin is left alone at home during Christmas by his parents who accidently leave for a holiday without him. After a few scenes of him running around screaming and panicking, Culkin realises that he has to survive this Christmas on his own. In the meantime, his parents, once on the plane, realise that they’ve left their beloved child at home. A true story heartfelt about child neglect. In a hurried attempt to fly back on Christmas Eve, Culkin’s mother is told there are no flights out and eventually finds herself in the back of a van with John Candy. Unfortunately it’s not as sexy as it sounds. So now that Culkin remembers he hates his family (a message portrayed to all children at their most impressionable), he decides he’ll make the most of it. In fact, he fucking loves it. A real trooper.
Then comes the problem: a couple of thieves planning to burgle his house once they found out the whole family will be out. Oh, the shenanigans. Culkin lays out booby traps for these two misfits, known as The Wet Bandits, as they attempt to at first steal from the house, and then eventually attempt to MURDER Culkin. That’s right, this film is about child neglect and then murdering an innocent. Good family fun!
Scrooged (1988) Dir. Richard Donner
There are disturbing amounts of people in the world who haven’t seen this magnificent film. Starring Bill Murray as our modern day Scrooge, it’s the long loved story of a visitation of three ghosts who teach a bitter man that it is never too late to love. Murray is Frank Cross, a TV executive working on the live Christmas special. He is a powerful man with little patience for those who work for him. His secretary, a young poor woman who can barely afford a Christmas tree is in the end, his one good deed. Considering that in this film he ruins the life of the lady he loves, almost kills a safety inspector, speaks harshly to his brother and fires a young recently married man, turning him to alcoholism. None of these issues are addressed as he gets back with the love of his life, leaving us wondering if she could do better (it’s Bill Fucking Murray, of course she can’t). His secretary is the only person left with a permanent conclusion as her son is ‘fixed’ by Bill’s sudden eruption of happiness. Nonetheless, the ending makes me cry without fail, and my brother has always told me I’m like the Ghost from Christmas Present which I take as a compliment every time. Also, there’s a scene where Bill Murray falls and I still can’t figure out if it was actually written in. I could talk about this film forever.
Gremlins (1984) Dir. Joe Dante
There’s nothing more Christmassy than an invasion of small slimy trolls hell bent on killing the human race and taking over the world. In a cute way, of course. Well, at least it starts off cute with Gizmo, a loveable furry creature with slow movements and soft noises. Like a well-behaved baby, something we all know doesn’t exist. A young boy Billy takes Gizmo as a pet and has been told a few rules in order to keep him in a good reliable state. For example, he can’t be fed after midnight. Also, don’t throw water on him, for Christ’s sake. Why you ask? Oh, it only causes tumors to grow on his body, which pop out of him and turn into murderous monsters. IT WAS SIMPLE BILLY YOU WERE TOLD TO DO ONE THING GODAMMIT. Billy and his girlfriend now have to control these animals and stop them from causing havoc. Which turns out ridiculously hilarious as they begin to reproduce on their own. Not frightening at all. So anyway, this all takes place during the Christmas period, hence why it’s on the list, and is a hell of a lot of fun. A lot of my childhood was spent watching this film over and over. In fact, I may watch it again now. BYE.