Episode 5 – Holiday Movie Suggestions (Bonus Episode)
Why Watch That?
Join us as the Critic and the Referee share their favorite holiday films. Enjoy a fun conversation that will help you to apply the “Why Watch That” method and learn a little more about the Critic and the Referee! By the way, some of their holiday picks may surprise you.
Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory is the story of Charlie Bucket, a little boy with no money and a good heart, who dreams wistfully of being able to buy the candy that other children enjoy. Charlie enters into a magical world when he wins one of five ‘Golden Tickets’ to visit the mysterious chocolate factory owned by the eccentric Willy Wonka and run by his capable crew of Oompa-Loompas. Once behind the gates, a cast of characters join Charlie and Grandpa Joe on a journey to discover that a kind heart is a far finer possession than a sweet tooth. (wikipedia)
Great performance: Gene Wilder
Coming to America (Critic’s Favorite) is a 1988 American comedy film directed by John Landis, and based on a story originally created by Eddie Murphy, who also starred in the lead role. The film also co-stars Arsenio Hall, James Earl Jones and John Amos. (wikipedia)
Home Alone is a 1990 American Christmas family comedy film written and produced by John Hughes and directed by Chris Columbus. The film stars Macaulay Culkin as Kevin McCallister, an eight-year-old boy who is mistakenly left behind when his family flies to Paris for their Christmas vacation. Kevin initially relishes being home alone, but soon has to contend with two would-be burglars played by Daniel Stern and Joe Pesci. The film also features Catherine O’Hara and John Heard as Kevin’s parents. As of 2009, Home Alone was the highest-grossing comedy of all time. (wikipedia)
Note: Only watch Home Alone 1 and 2.
“Once Macaulay Culkin goes away, you should too”- the Critic
Bad Santa (The “Dirty Raunchy” Holiday Movie) is a 2003 American Christmas black comedy film directed by Terry Zwigoff, and starring Billy Bob Thornton, Bernie Mac, and Lauren Graham, with Tony Cox, Brett Kelly, Lauren Tom, and John Ritter in supporting roles. It was Ritter’s last film appearance before his death in 2003. (wikipedia)
The Family Man is a 2000 American drama film directed by Brett Ratner and starring Nicolas Cage and Téa Leoni. Cage’s production company, Saturn Films, helped to produce the film. (wikipedia)
It’s A Wonderful Life is a 1946 American Christmas fantasy comedy-drama film produced and directed by Frank Capra, based on the short story “The Greatest Gift”, which Philip Van Doren Stern wrote in 1939 and published privately in 1945. (wikipedia)
Love Actually is a 2003 British Christmas-themed romantic comedy film written and directed by Richard Curtis. The screenplay delves into different aspects of love as shown through ten separate stories involving a wide variety of individuals, many of whom are shown to be interlinked as their tales progress. Set primarily in London, the story begins five weeks before Christmas and is played out in a weekly countdown until the holiday, followed by an epilogue that takes place one month later.
A Christmas Story (Referee’s Choice) is a 1983 American Christmas comedy film based on the short stories and semi-fictional anecdotes of author and raconteur Jean Shepherd, based on his book In God We Trust, All Others Pay Cash, with some elements derived from Wanda Hickey’s Night of Golden Memories. It was directed by Bob Clark. The film has since become a holiday classic and is shown numerous times on television during the Christmas season on the American network TBS, often in a 24-hour marathon. (wikipedia)
National Lampoons Holiday Vacation is a 1983 Technicolor comedy film directed by Harold Ramis and starring Chevy Chase, Beverly D’Angelo, Randy Quaid, Dana Barron, and Anthony Michael Hall. John Candy, Imogene Coca, Christie Brinkley, and Jane Krakowski appear in supporting roles. The screenplay was written by John Hughes, based on his short story “Vacation ’58” which appeared in National Lampoon. The original story is a fictionalized account of his own family’s ill-fated trip to Disneyland when Hughes was a boy. The success of the film helped advance his screenwriting career. (wikipedia)
Elf is a 2003 American Christmas comedy film directed by Jon Favreau and written by David Berenbaum. It stars Will Ferrell, James Caan, Bob Newhart, Ed Asner, and Zooey Deschanel. It was released in the United States on November 7, 2003. The story is about one of Santa’s elves who learns of his true identity as a human and goes to New York City to meet his biological father, spreading Christmas cheer in a world of cynics as he goes. (wikipedia)
Sound of Music Live! is a television special that was originally broadcast by NBC on December 5, 2013. Produced by Craig Zadan and Neil Meron, the special was an adaptation of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Broadway musical The Sound of Music, starring country singer Carrie Underwood as Maria von Trapp, performed and televised live from Grumman Studios in Bethpage, New York. (wikipedia)
Netflix Instant Alert
Santa Claus: The Movie
The Critic suggests this film, “if you want a good laugh.” It is a 1985 British/American Christmas film starring David Huddleston, Dudley Moore and John Lithgow. It was the last major fantasy film produced by the Paris-based father-and-son production team of Alexander and Ilya Salkind. (wikipedia)