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Month in Review: December 2010

by on 2010/12/31

Happy Holidays!

For me personally, those holidays are a long stretch of Christmas and a quick dash of New Year.

Join us for a heart-warming, heart-wrenching and, occasionally, heart-sickening look back through the frost-edged pane of a video screen in winter.

Unwrap a selection of holiday favourites with Hacker Renders’ list of films for December 2010, a list of five: favourites, surprises, disappointments, and least-liked, as well as the movie I’d most like to see, reviewed by our not-so-secret Satan.

Favourite Film:
A Christmas Story (1983)

“A Christmas Story is a movie with no message, no justice or karma, of times held nonetheless in high esteem. Vintage (North) Americana, bittersweet nostalgia, and affection for a life as real and imperfect as today. Now, as then, geeks wrestled with their gadgets, families, and fantasies, malfunctioning and miraculous alike.”

Greatest Surprise:
Smallville – “Lexmas” (2005)

“If it’s somewhat atypical in showing us the happier side of Clark Kent’s nemesis, “Lexmas” is still a terrific litmus test. It contains much of Smallville’s strength in a self-contained holiday tale.”

Honourable Mention:
Santa Claus Conquers the Martians (1964)

Most Disappointing:
Holiday Fireplace in HD (2006)

“The lack of plot, absence of an emotional arc for players and wooden characterizations: strikes one, two, and three. Ok, those were my concerns, which did little but elicit a wry smile from the good Mr. Renders.

“If one really wanted the experience of Holiday Fireplace in HD, simply print off the front cover artwork and wiggle it slightly in front of your face while humming “O Holy Night”.”

A Charlie Brown Christmas (1965)

“Remember my displeasure with The Frighteners? Well, there’s a new pariah in town, and its name is A Charlie Brown Christmas, a piece I loathe nearly to the core.

“I’m a sucker for Christmas movies, even some with religious agendas. But A Charlie Brown Christmas is dogmatic, hypocritical nonsense, inept in all but its sound. At 25 minutes in length, it’s still too long by far.”

Show Me:
Four Christmases (2008)

“You can’t spell families without l-i-e-s.

“Four Christmases wasn’t a perfect movie by any stretch but there are worse ways to spend 88 minutes of your life. For me, dysfunction feels like home.”

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