Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to everyone celebrating this time of year. If you opened gifts last night or are opening gifts right now, then you probably had this film on your TV in the background because that’s really the only way you can truly do Christmas. Yes, A Christmas Story is the best Christmas film of all-time and you didn’t celebrate the holiday if you did not watch it last night or today.
A Christmas Story is special because you can really only watch it two days out of the year: Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. Throughout my lifetime, I have always watched that first showing of this movie on TBS during Christmas Eve. I get my hot chocolate ready and watch this sentimental film with my family.
A Christmas Story is a narration of events from adult Ralphie Parker, voiced by Jean Shepherd, who recounts one Christmas season in the 1940s when he really wanted the Red Ryder Carbon Action 200-shot Range Model air rifle. Of course, every time he told someone this, he would get in response: “You’ll shoot your eye out kid”.
While Ralphie’s story is hilarious and all, my favorite character in this film has always been Mr. Parker, the Old Man, played by Darren McGavin. “It’s a major award”. The infamous leg lamp that the father loved with all his heart and displayed it in the front window for all to see until Mrs. Parker, played by Melinda Dillon, “accidentally” breaks the lamp while dusting. In comes my two favorite lines in this entire film: “You used up all the glue on purpose” and “nattafinga”. I don’t know why but if you know me well enough, I tend to repeat these lines on occasion. Oh yeah, “BUMPUSES”.
Everything about this film just screams Christmas. It is such a feel-good movie. It is hard to really point out why it has come to be as iconic as it has but you can really bog down to you just the setting of this film. Outside of the in-home scenes, the filming took place in Cleveland during the wintertime to capture that authentic cold, wintery, Christmas feeling that one gets. The season is perfectly represented by this film, which I think is the number one reason why this film has been awarded a 24-hour marathon on Christmas.
There’s really nothing you can hate about this film. Peter Billingsley, who plays the young Ralphie that we see on-screen, is immaculate. From getting restless over the BB gun to saying the F— word instead of “Fuddddddddddddddge”, Billingsley is a joy to watch.
Randy is great as well. I still get grossed out when he acts like a pig while eating his meatloaf and mashed potatoes. “Mommy’s little piggy” says Mrs. Parker as she watches her son eat off the plate instead of using a fork. Bleh. Still freaking hilarious though.
We cannot forget the iconic Chinese duck scene with our great Christmas carolers. “Deck the Halls with boughs of holly. Fa-ra-ra-ra-ra-ra-ra-ra-ra”.
This movie represents everything great about Christmas and is the film you have to watch during this time. However, the one rule with this film is that you can only watch it on Christmas Eve night and during Christmas Day. Make sure you check it out today if you haven’t yet and have a very Merry Christmas!