It’s Christmas movie time! Yes, of course Christmas is over, but we’ve all still got our tree up and the three wise man haven’t visited the little boy yet, right? So it’s still perfectly acceptable to watch a good Christmas movie. I’ve watched three great movies on the two Christmas Days (yes, we’ve got two of them here) and I’d like to share the joy with you. So read on and find out what I thought of Charlie And The Chocolate Factory, The Nightmare Before Christmas and How The Grinch Stole Christmas.
CHARLIE AND THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY
Seen on December 25th, 2015
Director: Tim Burton
Writers: Roald Dahl, John August
Main cast: Johnny Depp, Freddie Highmore, David Kelly
Charlie, who comes from a very poor family, wins a ticket to visit Willie Wonka’s chocolate factory. The fairy-tale like rooms inside the factory are nothing like he ever could have imagined. The tour entails more than just a simple visit, though…
I’d seen this movie once before. It had been a very long time though, so the only thing I could remember was that it was fairy-tale like and that I liked it. And that Johnny Depp played in it of course. Little did I know that it was a Tim Burton movie! And here I was, thinking I had never seen a Tim Burton movie in my life before.
The movie is a perfect mixture of enchantment, weirdness and creepiness. The chocolate factory has a waterfall of melted chocolate, candy canes flourishing from the ground and a boat crossing the chocolate river. It’s magical. But at the same time it’s a bit creepy as well. The Oompa Loompas who work there all look exactly the same, strange things are happening to the kids visiting the factory and Willie Wonka’s intentions are not quite clear. Is he just weird but nice at heart, or is he a total creep? You’ll have to watch the movie until the end to find out.
Willie Wonka’s is not the only weirdo, though. All the kids and their parents have strange quirks. The only sane person in the whole movie seems to be Charlie. This makes it really fun to watch.
Technically this is not a Christmas movie, but the setting makes it perfect to watch during Christmas time! But if you’re up for a strange but fun movie with a magical feel, this movie will perfectly do in any season!
Oh, fun fact: there’s a brilliant reference to Edward Scissorhands, who happens to be played by Johnny Depp as well and which happens to be directed by Tim Burton too.
THE NIGHTMARE BEFORE CHRISTMAS
Seen on December 26th, 2015
Director: Henry Selick
Writers: Tim Burton, Michael McDowell, Caroline Thompson
Main cast: Danny Elfman, Chris Sarandon, Catherine O’Hara
Jack Skeleton is the Pumpkin King in Halloween town. Every villager admires him, for his major talent of scaring all the kids. However, Jack feels like something is missing in his life. In the forest, he discovers a tree that transports him to Christmas Town. He feels enchanted by all the Christmas magic around him. Suddenly it hits him: he will take over Christmas and be Santa this year!
I’m a bit embarrassed to say I’d never seen this movie before. In fact, A Nightmare Before Christmas wasn’t all that popular in the Netherlands when it came out (or I was living under a rock at the time). I first got notice of this movie when I played the video game Kingdom Hearts. I was so curious about this movie since then! And I’ve heard such good stories about this movie, which made me even more thrilled to see it. It must have been twelve years ago when I heard about it the first time. For some reason, I never got to watch it. But now the time had finally come! I would finally see A Nightmare Before Christmas.
The stories I’ve heard were true. This movie is phenomenal! I couldn’t believe I was watching a movie that was 22 years old already. The graphics would be totally acceptable even today. But back then, it was like magic! And because it’s a Tim Burton movie, there’s this weird mixture of cute and creepy, and of sweet and frightful. And because of that, it totally stands out from all the other animated movies out there. It’s so unique.
The story is nice as well. It’s not only about taking over Christmas, it’s about feeling trapped in your life and wanting to get more out of it. It’s about asking yourself if this is it. It’s something we all go through at some point in our lives. So there you go, in this movie you will be able to totally relate to a pumpkin king skeleton. There’s also a love story, which seemed a bit forced to me. The movie could have totally done without, although it is kind of sweet as well. It just needed a bit more sparks from both sides to be believable, I guess. But hey, who am I talking about believable stuff when I am reviewing a movie about a skeleton with a midlife crisis, a boogie man with a torture cellar and a tree which will transport you to Christmas town? Just go see the movie, it’ll be worth it!
HOW THE GRINCH STOLE CHRISTMAS
Seen on December 26th, 2015
Director: Ron Howard
Writers: Dr. Seuss, Jeffrey Price, Peter S. Seaman
Main cast: Jim Carrey, Taylor Momsen, Kelley
In Whoville Christmas time is the most important time of year. Everybody loves Christmas. Everybody except for the Grinch. He hates the villagers and he hates Christmas. The only one who seems to understand him, is a little girl named Cindy Lou, who is having her own doubts about Christmas. But will her trust in the Grinch be justified, when he decided to steal Christmas?
Another movie that I once saw and that I loved. When I noticed it was on Netflix, I just had to see it again! Especially when I found out Ruud had never seen it before. In the beginning I had to get used to the Jim Carrey way of humor. Apparently that was more my kind of thing in the past than it was now. But it did fit the character of the Grinch very well. Despite his gross way of living and his bad manners, he instantly became a character who is hard not to love.
The village of Whoville looks magical, as do the people who live there. The characters are very stereotypic and could have had a bit more depth in my opinion. Although the lack of depth makes the main character, little Cindy Lou, stand out even more, I guess. I love her character and I think the actress played her very well.
I also love the fact that the narrator speaks in rhyme (as well as the Grinch sometimes, which annoys him very much). It makes it all even a bit more fairytale-like.
The beautiful snowy surroundings, the fairy-tale like village, the rhyme and of course the Christmas theme make this the perfect Christmas movie, in my opinion.
To any attentive reader of my blog out there: If you were by any chance wondering what happened to the movies 32-36; I will blog about them later. I just thought it made sense to write about Christmas movies first.