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Review: “Jingle All the Way”

December 12, 2012 6 comments
Jingle All the WayDirected by: Brian Levant
Produced by: Chris Columbus, Michael Barnathan, Mark Radcliffe
Written by: Randy Kornfield, Chris Columbus (uncredited rewrite)
Editing by: Kent Beyda, Wilton Henderson, Adam Weiss
Cinematography by: Victor J. Kemper
Music by: David Newman
Starring: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Sinbad, Phil Hartman, Rita Wilson, Jake Lloyd, Robert Conrad, Jim Belushi
Year: 1996

 

A lot of Christmas movies attempt to sell us the idea that they know what the true meaning of Christmas is. Usually movies like these involve the main character committing some sort of minor, selfish sin that hurts a member (or members) of their family, especially the children, before going through some ordeal that causes them to realize, through some contrived epiphany, that all important (and incredibly generic) meaning behind the season: family. Cue the proverbial rush to make things right through some sort of breathless plea for forgiveness and confessions of mutual love before the warm embrace with their loved ones (spinning around is optional, but gazing upward in triumph is usually a must). It’s a familiar and easy formula, sometimes doctored up to make the story seem original, but usually there’s at least some sort of artificial sincerity at the film’s core that is just enough to make you feel warm inside, even if it’s just for a guilty moment. Read more…

An Ode to Pooh: Melancholy Ramblings on the State of Hand-Drawn Animation

September 20, 2011 3 comments

Pooh and Christopher Robin head off into the sunset.

It’s the question on the lips of every animation buff’s lips: Is hand-drawn animation on its way out? Let me get this out of the way, as you likely already know my perspective on the matter: I certainly hope that it isn’t.

As of this writing, I’m eagerly anticipating the release of the Blu-Ray release of Disney’s 70-year-old classic Dumbo, a movie I haven’t seen in probably over a decade — I can’t even remember the last time I did see it, in fact! But outside of film, animation, and Disney uber-fans, is there any truth to former Disney dictator Michael Eisner’s supposition that, much like black and white movies, these movies no longer appeal to general audiences? Read more…

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