Christmas with a Capital C
It’s one day from Halloween, and I’m writing an entry about Christmas, yes I know I am weird lol. But seriously, I couldn’t help but think about the idea of Christmas movies for a few reasons. One reason is due to the fact I am planning a special Christian Christmas movie night at the end of November; hopefully we’ll have snow by then so we can go tubing. Besides that though, I know very soon companies will start releasing their DVDs, TV Specials, commercials, products, etc for the “holiday season”. Because there are plenty of movies out there which are and have been made for the Christmas time of year, I couldn’t help but think more about them. At one point, I remembered some of my previous blog entries and movie reviews about Christmas, and I also remembered some of the previous Christmas films I’ve watched in the past and have heard other people talk about. And then it hit me. Really when you get past all of the details, there are really only three types of Christmas movies.
Before I get to what the three types are, I’m sure some of you maybe wondering… “Ben why does it matter?” Well it matters, because of what Christmas is supposed to be all about. Christmas is supposed to be about many things, but there are somethings which are emphasized which may not necessarily be as important as other details if even important at all. In fact some of these details are reasons why some don’t celebrate Christmas and even hate those who do practice it; or at least hate the time of year… Now this is very important to note, because some of those said people think that’s why people celebrate Christmas, when that isn’t true in actuality and if someone is actually doing it for those grrr-able reasons then they ought to reexamine their life. What are those details to which I am referring? They’ll be addressed as I’m revealing to you THE three Types of Christmas Movies:
1) Secular Christmas Movies. These were the common format for what a Christmas movie was back in the day. (when I say ‘back in the day’ I mean within the 90s and earlier.) I have enjoyed and currently own many of these types of movies. These type of Christmas Movies have to take place around Christmas time; in fact any Christmas movie must. These also emphasize certain ideas within the plot like Family, Peace, Joy, Love, Friendship, and Forgiveness which are very good things. What makes it secular, however, is the fact these movies won’t say much about Jesus; though might give a quick slip of a reference indirectly. Now I’m not saying that’s a completely bad thing, because I don’t expect all movies to talk about Jesus but with Christmas being what it is, all those other themes I mentioned a few sentences ago are secondary themes. Primarily this is done simply to reach out to a broader audience, which I can respect depending on how it’s done of course. I would argue such movies as Trapped in Paradise, All I Want for Christmas, A Muppet Family Christmas, How the Grinch Stole Christmas, and others are good examples of Secular Christmas movies.
2) Christian Christmas Movies. I know that might sound like an oxymoron to some people, but unfortunately in today’s culture it is not. Now again I am not demonizing Secular Christmas movies, because there are some very good ones out there besides the examples I mentioned a moment ago. However, a good Christian Christmas film will do everything a Secular Christmas movie does, and will also not be afraid to tell people that Jesus is the reason for the season. It is, after all, THE Primary reason we ought to celebrate Christmas in the first place. If someone grrs at that idea, that’s too bad because that is nonnegotiable. I do not expect, nor should every Christmas movie to be a reenactment of the Nativity scene, because that isn’t the only way a movie can talk about Jesus Christ and some of those reenactments are questionable for interpretation anyhow. Sure movies like Christmas With a Capital C , Saint Nicholas, The Perfect Gift, and others are great movies made by Christian based groups, however not every Christian Christmas movie needs to be necessarily made by a Christian company. I mean there are other movies/TV Specials like A Charlie Brown Christmas, Noel, Nestor the Long Eared Christmas Donkey, and others which are examples of Christian Christmas movies not necessarily made by a Christian based company.
3) Holiday Fluff. I wrote and talked about this a little bit last year, but it needs to be said again. Holiday Fluff in short is a concept which appears very sugary sweet and might even taste good with a quick lick, but when heavily consumed it gives the person a stomach ache and doesn’t satisfy their hunger. Unfortunately, this is the type of “Christmas” movie which is more popular in modern times. These types of movies promote stuff like shopping, decorating, Santa Claus, finding a tree, Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer, having family over at the house, wrapping presents, Frosty the Snow man, snow, opening presents, and other things/ideas which don’t necessarily need to even be apart of Christmas to make it Christmas. Holiday Fluff are also the types of movies which will absolutely REFUSE to talk about and show anything referring to Jesus Christ, the Nativity, or anything else which is Christian based at all; unless it’s in a negative way. Because of this complete refusal, companies will even go as far as trying to reinvent what it means to celebrate Christmas, and much of what they try to promote are what makes some people grr at the Holiday Season. Honestly, if Christmas was all about what Holiday Fluff tries to paint this time of year to be, I’d be standing right next to the protest sign holding Atheist in support. Despite this, however, there are some likeable Holiday Fluff movies including Elf, Christmas With The Kranks, and A Christmas Story. But then there are others like Gremlins, Die Hard, A Very Harold & Kumar 3D Christmas, Four Christmases, Olive the Other Reindeer, Beethoven’s Christmas Adventure, Home Alone 4 and others which make me think “How is this Christmas???”
I’m very familiar with David A.R. White’s various roles, I remember Brad Stine due to his role in Christmas With a Capital C, and I was also sort of familiar with Tommy Blaze for his role in Marriage Retreat. I love a good laugh, and I’m a Christian so when I saw this on Netflix I was ready to see a piece of the Christian comedy world since the only other person I really heard was Tim Hawkins; I’ll have to review the dvd I got another day.
Run On is three different men performing in front of a live audience sharing a personal story about themselves. Each person tells their true life story through a comedic, yet also inspirational way. Each of them is letting the audience know not only how crazy life can be, but at the same time how awesome God is and how mysterious he can be sometimes…
Now you might be wondering: “Are these stories interesting?” or “Are any of these three funny?” I would answer each of those questions with yes. In regard to the thought: “who is the funniest?” in my opinion that was Tommy Blaze, partially because of the way he emphasized things lol. “Whose story is most interesting?” I would say David A.R. White’s simply because when I listened to him I kind of picked up on the idea that maybe the movie Holyman Undercover was a partial parody of his own life. “Who was the most unique?” without hesitation that was definitely Brad Stine, because I had no idea he could do tricks like swallowing a sai. As for “whose story was saddest?” despite being the funniest, Tommy Blaze’s story about his impending divorce was definitely the most sad especially with how he ends it… Each of the three men through their true life tales not only entertained me, but at the same time made me think more about how we desperately need God through our bad times in addition to our good times. We also see that God has things happen for reasons we don’t understand at the time, but later when we see how it resulted it makes much more sense. This is clean comedy with a purpose and I hope other aspects of the Christian comedy world are like this, because I’m tired of hearing my friends talk about comedy which involves F-bombs and crude subjects… I really liked this and recommend this to anyone.
TCP Movie Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
Christmas is a very special time of year where Christians like me can especially celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ. Unfortunately, there are times when we don’t always have Christ involved enough within the Christmas celebration. Not to mention there are certain people out there who want to rain on our parade, and aren’t as “tolerant” as they preach; sadly seeing the comment page for the movie trailer is enough proof of that. Well Christmas with a Capital C keeps all of those elements in mind.
Christmas with a Capital C is about a small Alaskan town which has a bit of controversy stirred up thanks to a returning resident. Dan Reed is the mayor of Trapper Falls and encounters an old high school associate named Mitch Bright. Mitch not only seeks to run against Dan in the mayoral election, but also puts a legal hold on any Christmas related festivities. Because of Mitch’s legal action, it raises a few questions for Dan’s family and several residents like: “How should a Christian respond to opposition?”, “What is most important when observing Christmas?”, and “What is Christmas really all about?” My wife and I watched this together, since we both love Christmas, and we loved it!
I felt Christmas with a Capital C had unique direction and was much better than I was honestly expecting. I thought at first it was a bit unusual to see the guy who played Jefferson Darcy play Mayor Dan Reed let alone be apart of a Christian film, but he pleasantly surprised me with how good and genuine his performance was. Daniel Baldwin played a great antagonist too, his character was someone who I disliked and pitied at the same time. The story line was well thought out and had a few unsuspected twists and turns. My wife and I thought Brad Stine, who played Dan’s brother, was hilarious; I agree with his sentiment about “Happy Holidays”. The camera work was really cool and quite crisp, especially when they showed Dan’s son skiing. I felt the message was both realistic and quite necessary to be heard; we need to stop the battle mentality and look at things differently. I do not regret my purchase at all and I encourage others to watch this film as well.
TCP Movie Rating: 5 out of 5 stars.