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slaytonf

The most irritating Christmas movie ever.

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How do I loathe thee?  Let me 'count the ways.  In my grimaces, my cringes, and my frowns.  Shall I risk becoming a pariah, and pull back the curtain on one of the great socially accepted myths, that a Christmas movie is by right and definition, charming, endearing, and heartwarming.  As Charlie Brown would have it, bleacch!  Don't make me retch.  There is no type of move more artfully designed to get under your skin and fill you with an intolerable irritation.  Kind of like the feeling you'd get from having ants, or small spiders crawling all over you.  So, what's the worst?  Oh, there's such a long, deliciously wretched list.  How about one of tonight's features.  Is it still on?  No, just over, it's safe to turn the TV back on:  Holliday Affair.  I managed to watch it all the way through the first time I saw it.  But never since then.  Glad this wasn't the first movie I saw Robert Mitchum in, or it would have taken a lot to think well of him as an actor, Out of the Past notwithstanding.  What a long, dreary, contrived bore it is. What a pathetic straw man Wendell Corey's character is.  How, you wonder, could a stunner like Janet Leigh ever date him once, let alone get engaged, will perpetually be beyond my comprehension.  And Robert Mitchum's character is such a conceited, presumptuous, arrogant. . .arrogant. . . .knave--that's the word, knave, you almost root for Corey to get the girl.  Or for the girl's sake, you hope she gets shut of both of them.

 

I might as well go for the Big One right off.  I hate It's a Wonderful Life.  Or, to be honest, I don't know if I hate it or not, never having been able to make it through the first twenty minutes of it.  Capra's movies are always filled with the same gloopy, hoaky, sentimentalism.  But in most cases, there's enough brilliance to more than counteract it.  Not in this stinker.  Bet it set the housing industry alone back twenty years.  Whenever I see an advertisement for the movie with that noxious kid saying--you know what she says, I want to reach though the screen and. . . .well, let me just say it's lucky there are laws against child killing, in this state, at least.

 

Ok, how can I make myself more hated?  Oh, yes.  A Christmas Story.  I can't say if my reaction to this looser is equal to Wonderful Life.  That's because I can't watch more than the first ten minutes of it.  I like Darren McGavin, especially for his Kolchak movies, and even the TV series.  And its a good thing I didn't seen any of him in this movie, or it would have turned me off to him.  This movie is doubly insidious, for it has generated an ancillary industry I'm sure TCMers will be familiar with, due to the number of movielets documenting the cultish adulation among the movie's admirers.  I know it's supposed to be unstated, to be the elephant in the room.  I know it's supposed to be a symbol of the absurd restrictions that rule our lives, and function as a core message of the movie.  But the enormity of the illogic just hanging out there over the movie is impossible for me to tolerate.  Anyone not an imbecile should instantly realize you can't shoot out your eye with a rile, unless you take off your shoe and pull the trigger with your toe.  You can shoot out someone else's eye, but not your own.  And the fact that the kid didn't instantly respond to his mother with that is justification for him not getting the air rifle.

 

That's a long rant, but it was fun.  There are lots of other godawful examples, but I prefer to dwell on things I like.

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A bad Christmas movie in itself is irritating, I think they made "Santa With Muscles" to beat "Santa Clause Conquers the Martins". Worst concept to come down the pike.

 

Santa_With_Muscles.jpg

 

The most tasteless is "Silent Night Deadly Night", we already have murder during Christmas, it's called Black Friday..

 

215px-Silentnightdeadlynight.jpg

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And a very Merry Christmas to YOU, slayton!!! LOL

 

Btw, I think you're pretty much wrong on all counts here, but of course the word "wrong' in its use here is incorrect, as I should have just said "that isn't my opinion of those films at all".

 

(...and especially because I've watched the WHOLE of "It's a Wonderful Life" and not just "the first twenty minutes"...'cause yeah, it gets WAY better as it goes on...but then again admittedly, I'm just a sentimental old softy)   ;)

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How do I loathe thee?  Let me 'count the ways.  In my grimaces, my cringes, and my frowns.  Shall I risk becoming a pariah, and pull back the curtain on one of the great socially accepted myths, that a Christmas movie is by right and definition, charming, endearing, and heartwarming.  As Charlie Brown would have it, bleacch!  Don't make me retch.  There is no type of move more artfully designed to get under your skin and fill you with an intolerable irritation.  Kind of like the feeling you'd get from having ants, or small spiders crawling all over you.  So, what's the worst?  Oh, there's such a long, deliciously wretched list.  How about one of tonight's features.  Is it still on?  No, just over, it's safe to turn the TV back on:  Holliday Affair.  I managed to watch it all the way through the first time I saw it.  But never since then.  Glad this wasn't the first movie I saw Robert Mitchum in, or it would have taken a lot to think well of him as an actor, Out of the Past notwithstanding.  What a long, dreary, contrived bore it is. What a pathetic straw man Wendell Corey's character is.  How, you wonder, could a stunner like Janet Leigh ever date him once, let alone get engaged, will perpetually be beyond my comprehension.  And Robert Mitchum's character is such a conceited, presumptuous, arrogant. . .arrogant. . . .knave--that's the word, knave, you almost root for Corey to get the girl.  Or for the girl's sake, you hope she gets shut of both of them.

 

I might as well go for the Big One right off.  I hate It's a Wonderful Life.  Or, to be honest, I don't know if I hate it or not, never having been able to make it through the first twenty minutes of it.  Capra's movies are always filled with the same gloopy, hoaky, sentimentalism.  But in most cases, there's enough brilliance to more than counteract it.  Not in this stinker.  Bet it set the housing industry alone back twenty years.  Whenever I see an advertisement for the movie with that noxious kid saying--you know what she says, I want to reach though the screen and. . . .well, let me just say it's lucky there are laws against child killing, in this state, at least.

 

Ok, how can I make myself more hated?  Oh, yes.  A Christmas Story.  I can't say if my reaction to this looser is equal to Wonderful Life.  That's because I can't watch more than the first ten minutes of it.  I like Darren McGavin, especially for his Kolchak movies, and even the TV series.  And its a good thing I didn't seen any of him in this movie, or it would have turned me off to him.  This movie is doubly insidious, for it has generated an ancillary industry I'm sure TCMers will be familiar with, due to the number of movielets documenting the cultish adulation among the movie's admirers.  I know it's supposed to be unstated, to be the elephant in the room.  I know it's supposed to be a symbol of the absurd restrictions that rule our lives, and function as a core message of the movie.  But the enormity of the illogic just hanging out there over the movie is impossible for me to tolerate.  Anyone not an imbecile should instantly realize you can't shoot out your eye with a rile, unless you take off your shoe and pull the trigger with your toe.  You can shoot out someone else's eye, but not your own.  And the fact that the kid didn't instantly respond to his mother with that is justification for him not getting the air rifle.

 

That's a long rant, but it was fun.  There are lots of other godawful examples, but I prefer to dwell on things I like.

Mitchum shoulda let Corey have her. After Mitchum has the affrontery to make his speech at the christmas dinner, the movie should end right after Janet Leigh says "I think you should get your hat and coat."

That would improve the film immensely. :lol:

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I hate It's a Wonderful Life.  Or, to be honest, I don't know if I hate it or not, never having been able to make it through the first twenty minutes of it

 

I can't watch that either. Sap content is just too high for me.

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Mitchum shoulda let Corey have her. After Mitchum has the affrontery to make his speech at the christmas dinner, the movie should end right after Janet Leigh says "I think you should get your hat and coat."

That would improve the film immensely. :lol:

 

Primarily because it would shorten it.  And the shorter the better.

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And a very Merry Christmas to YOU, slayton!!! LOL

 

Btw, I think you're pretty much wrong on all counts here, but of course the word "wrong' in its use here is incorrect, as I should have just said "that isn't my opinion those films at all".

 

(...and especially because I've watched the WHOLE "It's a Wonderful Life", and not just "the first twenty minutes"...'cause yeah, it gets WAY better as it goes on...but then again admittedly, I'm just a sentimental old softy)   ;)

 

Starting Christmas before Halloween has this effect. This thing has started WAY too early this year.  Weird seeing stores with jack-o-lanterns and witches with jolly Saint Nick on the same self.

 

One holiday at a time!

2731174924_costco_nightmare_xlarge.jpeg

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Mitchum shoulda let Corey have her. After Mitchum has the affrontery to make his speech at the christmas dinner, the movie should end right after Janet Leigh says "I think you should get your hat and coat."

That would improve the film immensely. :lol:

 

Really, ND?! So the idea that Janet will finally get her head out of her a$$ and realize(as Bob so "rudely" says to her) she's frightened of moving on and getting on with her life and maybe finding real love again after her husband was killed, is, is, somehow what?...a "needless plot point that doesn't need to be shown" or somethin'?

 

Sorry, but you guys remind me of something I occasionally say about people who can't enjoy a little sentimentality now and then:

 

"Anyone who doesn't get at least a little misty-eyed at watching Jimmy Stewart's reaction at hearing the toast to his character, 'To my big brother George...the richest man in town!', needs a freakin' heart-transplant!"

 

(...so THERE!!!)  :P

 

LOL

 

;)

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Really, ND?! So the idea that Janet will finally get her head out of her a$$ and realize(as Bob so "rudely" says to her) she's frightened of moving on and getting on with her life and maybe finding real love again after her husband was killed, is, is, somehow what?...a "needless plot point that doesn't need to be shown" or somethin'?

 

Sorry, but you guys remind me of something I occasionally say about people who can't enjoy a little sentimentality now and then:

 

"Anyone who doesn't get at least a little misty-eyed at watching Jimmy Stewart's reaction at hearing the toast to his character, 'To my big brother George...the richest man in town!', needs a freakin' heart-transplant!"

 

(...so THERE!!!)  :P

 

LOL

 

;)

 

Well, you told me.

 

I'm sorry for you that you like these movies, but people will like what they like.  I have to say, my previously unalloyed confidence in your discrimination has been shaken.  Alas.

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My heart must be okay - I misted up watching 'Toy Story 3' last weekend.

 

No transplant needed - even if I can't watch iawl.

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Well, you told me.

 

I'm sorry for you that you like these movies, but people will like what they like.  I have to say, my previously unalloyed confidence in your discrimination has been shaken.  Alas.

 

LOL

 

Sooooo, didn't know I was an old softy at heart, did ya?! ;)

 

Well, as I said slayton my friend, or at least as I earlier implied, I never thought one's propensity for an occasional appreciation of sentimentality necessarily precludes the idea that they can't also possess discerning tastes. it's not necessarily an oxymoronic thought, ya know.

 

(...nope, and let's also remember here that there IS a difference between "sanguine" and "saccharine", and while I'll admit I've always found the three movies you've mentioned to be the former, I've never found them to be much of the latter, and the latter something of which I'll agree with you is often off-putting...even to an "old softy" like me) ;)

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That was a great read, Slaytonf!

 

I’ve never understood the attraction of Holiday Affair, either. I could go into long detail about it, but I’ll just leave it at that.

 

Although I do like parts of It’s a Wonderful Life, I suggest a better candidate for Most Irritating Christmas Movie Ever would be It Happened One Christmas (1977), the remake of It’s a Wonderful Life with Marlo Thomas.

 

I’m not too wild about A Christmas Story (1983), either. For me, it’s a good movie to nap through. However, I do disagree about the possibility of shooting one’s eye out with a rifle. As a little kid, I was hit in both the face and in the glasses with ricochets from a BB gun rifle I was shooting. To illustrate this possibility with a much higher-powered rifle, and at a much greater distance, consider this video (don't worry: no death, no blood, just one danged lucky man):

 

www.youtube.com/watch?v=NcJ7w_pXH58

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Philip Borsos' One Magic Christmas.

If you believe hard enough kiddies, your parents will come back from the dead.

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I have two prints of HOLIDAY AFFAIR sitting in my vault and I have yet to watch the movie.  Now I'm wondering if I should even bother!

 

Anyway, my vote for most annoying Christmas movie is THE CHRISTMAS THAT ALMOST WASN'T.  I saw this at Larchmont Playhouse when I was a kid.  Even then I knew that Mischa Auer looked really awful.  And, of course, the late Paul Tripp.  Not one of my favorites (we actually hosted him one evening at Sons of the Desert).

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I'm with you on A CHRISTMAS STORY. I find it mean spirited and unfunny. I chalked up it's popularity to the nostalgia factor. 

 

But I love IAWL. I see a 35mm screening of it every year. It's even better on the big screen with an audience. I like the cast, the performances, the story arc and "oh, everything". This year we have a packed car of 5 going to see the vintage Capitol Theater all decorated-and I'm not even Christian!

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I have two prints of HOLIDAY AFFAIR sitting in my vault and I have yet to watch the movie.  Now I'm wondering if I should even bother!

 

Anyway, my vote for most annoying Christmas movie is THE CHRISTMAS THAT ALMOST WASN'T.  I saw this at Larchmont Playhouse when I was a kid.  Even then I knew that Mischa Auer looked really awful.  And, of course, the late Paul Tripp.  Not one of my favorites (we actually hosted him one evening at Sons of the Desert).

Larchmont Playhouse on Palmer Avenue in Larchmont in Westchester NY? Cool. Hated the movie, though, as well as Santa Claus Conquers the Martians. Was the latter the one with the scary little people? If not, that was another horrific Christmas movie. Loved Nightmare Before Christmas and A Christmas Story and the follow up It Runs In The Family.

 

I enjoyed Holiday Affair, probably only because I think Mitchum is hot stuff. Really hot stuff. Heck, I even watched Shop Around The Corner all the way through, so maybe I was just in a good mood. Although Stewart grates, and Morgan is excellent. Hated You've Got Mail.

 

Guess all the grinches don't like One Magic Christmas either. I love Harry Dean Stanton as an angel who looks more like a killer than an angel. Probably why I like him. :rolleyes:

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You've got a friend in me, slaytonf. I hate IAWL as well. And I really don't know why except that I pretty much dislike most of Capra's movies going all the way back to It Happened One Night. But A Christmas Story has just enough humor to entertain me although I don't have much patience with it these days. I still don't hate it though. Holiday Affair I've seen but don't really remember much about it.

 

I'm just going to be up front here. I've outlived my entire immediate family so this time of year is especially distressing to me. The older I get the more I find myself just hanging on with gritted teeth to get through the last couple of months of every year. So I don't indulge in Christmas movies very much these days. I find it difficult to even watch my favorite one, Mr. Magoo's Christmas Carol because I'm an emotional mess by the end and it's embarrassing .

 

Bah, humbug!

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The most irritating Christmas movie's I ever saw were.....

Jingle All The Way

A Christmas Story

Four Christmases

Surviving Christmas

:wacko:

 

I Love, It's a Wonderful Life. I could never find fault with that classic. :wub:

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Nobody's mentioned Meet Me In St. Louis yet? The singing of Judy Garland, and the acting of Margaret O'Brien. Two huge strikes. Add in the MGM musical styling without the intelligence of a Gene Kelly, and you've got a recipe for disaster.

 

Tenth Avenue Angel is irritating, too.

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The following is definitely NOT the most irritating Christmas movie ever....

It is probably the finest Christmas movie ever produced. Television or film. Made for ABC television by Hanna-Barbera studios. Written by James Poe.

 

The Gathering made in 1977

Here is a brief rundown of the plot from Wiki:

Adam Thornton (Edward Asner), an ill-tempered executive who walked out on his family, learns that he only has a little time left to live. He decides that he wants to make peace with them and have one last reunion. He confides this information to his estranged wife, Kate (Maureen Stapleton). But when his doctor says that it won't be good for him to travel, she suggests that he call his four adult children and invite them all for Christmas. He agrees only with the provision that they not be told of his illness and imminent death. The only problem is that most of them are not exactly fond of him because he walked out on Kate and of his stubborn nature. Of them, he is most nervous about seeing Bud (Gregory Harrison), whom he hasn't spoken to since having an argument with him regarding the Vietnam War and his move to Canada several years before.

Here is the brief scene from YouTube that shows a very tearful reunion:

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I like A Christmas Story for sentimental reasons. Long before the film I would hear the various adventure stories as told by Jean Shepherd of Ralphie, Randy, Shwartz, Flick, and Brunner, in the dark on the radio. The tales were random, usually sparked by current events that segued into a past that ranged from the 1930s to Shepherds army days. Then I read  In God We Trust, All Others Pay Cash. only parts of which were used in the screenplay (it's not a Christmas story btw).  

 

There are a few other realizations of Shepherd's radio shows & books out there:

 

The Phantom of the Open Hearth (1976), which aired as part of the anthology series VisionsThe Great American Fourth of July and Other Disasters (1982) and The Star-Crossed Romance of Josephine Cosnowski (1985), both as part of the anthology series American Playhouse and Ollie Hopnoodle's Haven of Bliss (1988)

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I like A Christmas Story for sentimental reasons. Long before the film I would hear the various adventure stories as told by Jean Shepard of Ralphie, Randy, Shwartz, Flick, and Brunner, in the dark on the radio. The tales were random, usually sparked by current events that segued into a past that ranged from the 1930s to Shepards army days. Then I read  In God We Trust, All Others Pay Cash. only parts of which were used in the screenplay (it's not a Christmas story btw).  

 

There are a few other realizations of Shepard's radio shows & books out there:

 

The Phantom of the Open Hearth (1976), which aired as part of the anthology series VisionsThe Great American Fourth of July and Other Disasters (1982) and The Star-Crossed Romance of Josephine Cosnowski (1985), both as part of the anthology series American Playhouse; and Ollie Hopnoodle's Haven of Bliss (1988)

Long before the film I would hear the various adventure stories as told by Jean Shepard of Ralphie, Randy, Shwartz, Flick, and Brunner, in the dark on the radio.

 

Wow. Lucky you. He and the movie are timeless.

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LOL

 

Sooooo, didn't know I was an old softy at heart, did ya?! ;)

 

Well, as I said slayton my friend, or at least as I earlier implied, I never thought one's propensity for an occasional appreciation of sentimentality necessarily precludes the idea that they can't also possess discerning tastes. it's not necessarily an oxymoronic thought, ya know.

 

(...nope, and let's also remember here that there IS a difference between "sanguine" and "saccharine", and while I'll admit I've always found the three movies you've mentioned to be the former, I've never found them to be much of the latter, and the latter something of which I'll agree with you is often off-putting...even to an "old softy" like me) ;)

Weelll,  You like people in spite of their shortcomings.

 

 

That was a great read, Slaytonf!

 

All for holiday cheer.  I have to admit, I wrote with tongue a little in cheek.  But very little.

 

 

But I love IAWL. I see a 35mm screening of it every year. It's even better on the big screen with an audience. I like the cast, the performances, the story arc and "oh, everything". This year we have a packed car of 5 going to see the vintage Capitol Theater all decorated-and I'm not even Christian!

 

It's at this time of year our thoughts turn to the afflicted and disadvantaged. . . .

 

 

I'm just going to be up front here. I've outlived my entire immediate family so this time of year is especially distressing to me. The older I get the more I find myself just hanging on with gritted teeth to get through the last couple of months of every year. So I don't indulge in Christmas movies very much these days. I find it difficult to even watch my favorite one, Mr. Magoo's Christmas Carol because I'm an emotional mess by the end and it's embarrassing .

 

Bah, humbug!

 

Perhaps you could get a vicarious lift from Magoo's--uh--Scrooge's reformation.  Remember the core message of A Christmas Carol:  Joy Through Abject Terror.

 

 

The following is definitely NOT the most irritating Christmas movie ever...

 

Now, now, none of that.  You'll have this thread turning all warm and fuzzy.  You want to talk about Christmas movies you like, you start your own thread.

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Most irritating?  MGM’s 1938 version of A Christmas Carol.  Despite some nice moments and effective photography, this version takes too many liberties with the story (“Hey, let’s improve on Dickens!”), such as:

 

Bob Cratchit being fired on Christmas Eve to ramp up the drama;

Too many scenes of people sliding on the ice;

Overemphasis on the love story between nephew Fred and Bess;

Scrooge, Fred, & Bess popping in on the Cratchits on Christmas morning.

 

Worst of all (sorry, Terry Kilburn & June Lockhart, both still alive) — are the Cratchit children who squeal nonstop over puddings and roasted waterfowl.  These kids played it way over the top, making this the only version of ACC where I wanted Scrooge NOT to mend his ways, so that Tiny Tim would soon die of his ailment, followed by the deaths of his siblings from general malnutrition.

 

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My heart must be okay - I misted up watching 'Toy Story 3' last weekend.

 

No transplant needed - even if I can't watch iawl.

BRAIN transplant, maybe!

 

 

All ribbing aside, Christmas is a time for syrupy sentimentality.  But, let's look at some of this from a different angle.

 

It was always MY understanding that IAWL wan't INTENDED to be a "Christmas" movie, but that it just takes place during Christmastime.  It could have just as easily been Valentine's day....but that's just MHO.

 

CHRISTMAS STORY works for me and several other folks I know because WE'VE long been fans of JEAN SHEPERD'S writing, and the "nostalgia factor" involved in it.  If WE weren't old enough to remember those times, we had PARENTS who lived through them, and we grew up hearing all about it.  So, it makes us think of THAT.

 

Plus, I don't see how ANYone can hate those movies( Even the MITCHUM one) when there's THE SANTA CLAUSE 1,2,3   FRED CLAUS,  and JINGLE ALL THE WAY to consider.

 

OR "ELF"!

 

AND  Jim Carrey's "GRINCH"

 

Then there's all those HALLMARK and LIFETIME Christmas Schlock-fest movies we're innundated with this time of year.

 

Oh, and WAYNE?----As bad as you think 1938's CHRISTMAS CAROL is, (and, I AM in full agreement with you!)  Thre's an Albert Finney musical version that gets a lot of airtime that's just GOD-awful!

 

Sepiatone

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