Tag Archives | christmas

My top 10 Christmas movies

I have compiled this list because a lot of Christmas films are inexplicably lame and every single year I seem to end up watching that really horrible film where Ben Affleck plays a mildly retarded (he’s not supposed to be, but acts like he is) rich dude who rents a family for Christmas. I want this list to be a reminder to myself and everyone who visits my blog that there are better things to watch than that pile of crap.

All of these are films that I watched over and over again as a kid, and maybe that’s what makes them so good to me, the fact that they bring me back to a time when Christmas was truly exciting and not just a lot of hassle. The ones me and my mum watched the most were Home Alone I & II, Santa Claus the Movie and Little Women (the 40s version, although I prefer this one from 1933), and my absolute favourite is It’s a Wonderful Life followed closely by Muppet Christmas Carol. 

What’s the film that you just have to watch every Christmas?

On giving handmade presents

4/365 Father's day
Now that Christmas is looming I’ve been thinking about presents. I think that, in theory, handmade presents are a great idea, more personal and touching than a store bought gift. However, I have found that, as much as I love handmade presents, they tend to fall into several categories, and not all of those are positive:
1. The “I don’t have any money, so I’m making you something” present.
I like this sort of present. I support drawings made with crayons that look like they were made by a 3 year old with a learning disability, mixtapes, mix CDs, I.O.Us, photo memories, letters and everything else that falls into this category. Sometimes these can be the most touching presents, the ones that show that, despite having no income, someone took the time to make something for you even if they’re not crafty types.
2. The “I’m super talented and awesome, so I’m gonna make you something elaborate, nice, and well thought” present.
If you’re lucky enough to be friends with creative types it is possible that you’ve received awesome presents from them. This is the kind of present that shows the person really knows you and took their time to put their abilities into showing you they care. This is obviously a good kind of present. Last year when I was living abroad 2 of my best friends gave me a framed drawing each, featuring us three when we leave the house (prim and proper) and when we’re out (drunk, singing Millencolin songs, wearing tiaras). This was without a doubt one of the nicest presents I’ve ever received and it meant more than any expensive fancy present.
3. The “I’m stingy and make stuff, so I’ll give you a handmade present because it’s cheaper”
Seriously, I’d rather not get anything than getting one of these, and I got quite a few in my lifetime. This is the sort of present that says “I know you won’t like it, but I make it, so you can’t escape from me”. Not only is it cheap, but it also shows an absolute lack of care from the person who got it. It’s like throwing a surprise party for a vegetarian at a steak place. That’s what it is.

So I guess my advice for this Christmas is: If you’re not going to give thoughtful presents, why bother at all? This applies to both handmade and store-bought presents. Be nice people.


Meet Me In Saint Louis (1944, Vincente Minelli)

Copeland posted a cover of ‘Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas’ on their myspace. The original was sung by Judy Garland in Meet Me In Saint Louis (1944, Vincente Minelli). I couldn’t care less about the band, but I love the film.

Coming out in the middle of WWII, Meet Me In Saint Louis looks back with nostalgia at the pre-war era, where values were still intact and the family united. Set in 1903, one year before Saint Louis’ World Fair, the film depicts an idealised world of domestic bliss (greatly enhanced by technicolor) that is threatened when Mr Alonzo Smith, the head of the family, organises a move to New York City in order to climb up the social ladder. There is not much more to the film’s plot; a love story with the next-door neighbour, ketchup making and other little details of the family’s daily life. Surprisingly, this is enough. Minelli did a great job. Every scene is wonderfully filmed, Judy Garland has never looked better, it’s funny and the musical numbers are not superfluous at all. It might be too mushy for some, but I think it’s great. I will definitely be watching it again this Christmas.

Judy Garland singing ‘Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas’ in the film:

Judy Garland – Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas mp3 (will expire in a week)


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