Thoughts After Rewatch: A Christmas Story


For some, this is the definitive Christmas movie. My favorite is Frank Capra’s It’s a Wonderful Life, which I caught on NBC  a couple weeks ago and found out it still makes me weep like a little girl at the end. A Christmas Story, though, has all the holiday spirit without suicide attempts and bankruptcy, so it’s far lighter fare for you to enjoy every December. I watched this for the first time only last year and I plan on doing so every holiday season!

The good: the writing by Jean Shepherd, Leigh Brown and Bob Clark is just plain fantastic, and hearing such sophisticated sentences against images of a small kid who just wants an official Red Ryder carbine-action 200-shot range model air rifle is pretty awesome and mainly why the film works so well. Another reason for that are the great performances by Melinda Dillon and Darren McGavin as Ralphie’s (Peter Billingsley) parents.

The bad: the film is the tiniest bit dated.

The ugly: that thing at the end with the carolers in the Chinese restaurant is super racist.

Favorite scene: Miss Shields grading Ralphie’s theme in his imagination.

Favorite line: (narrated by Ralphie as an adult)

In the heat of battle my father wove a tapestry of obscenities that as far as we know is still hanging in space over Lake Michigan.