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Babes in Toyland

Children of all ages have long held an affinity for the Victor Herbert operetta, Babes in Toyland - which joins the many beloved Mother Goose characters together in a musical story that has seen many incarnations over the years. Laurel and Hardy starred in the popular 1934 film version and by 1961, the master of family entertainment, Walt Disney, decided he wanted to take the classic for a spin with his own inimitable style. Continue reading...

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National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation

When audiences last left the Griswold family in 1985, they had embarked upon an ambitious and well-intentioned vacation to Europe, which of course went horribly and hilariously awry. Four years later, they welcomed the entire extended family into their home for a traditional family holiday in National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation. Continue reading...

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Miracle on 34th Street

For anyone, young or old, who ever doubted the existence of Santa Claus, those doubts were summarily laid to rest in the immortal 1947 holiday classic, Miracle on 34th Street. Only the most jaded scrooge could have a heart impervious to the charm that has made this a tradition holiday favorite ever since its original release. Continue reading...

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Lethal Weapon

Considered to be the flagship of the "buddy cop" action/comedy genre, the Lethal Weapon series has become one of the most popular action franchises of all times, beginning with this 1987 Richard Donner film starring Mel Gibson as Martin Riggs and Danny Glover as his by-the-book partner. Continue reading...

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Santa Claus: The Movie

Certainly a film called Santa Claus: The Movie would feature the jolly old bearded one in the starring role, right? Well, not so fast. Dudley Moore (Arthur) actually had top billing, as an elf named Patch, and Santa would have to suck it up and take a supporting role in this 1985 holiday feature. Continue reading...

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Home Alone

When it came right down to it, Kevin McCallister had a few more sadistic leanings than your average eleven-year-old. And it turns out, that we rather like that in a young hero, especially during the season of giving. And make no mistake, Kevin had plenty to give, in the way of bowling balls, staple guns, BB guns, and that old archaic standby, a good old blast of fire – all in the name of protecting his beloved family home. His violent antics and precocious demeanor won the hearts of millions of moviegoers who made 1990’s Home Alone one of the most successful movies of all time. Continue reading...

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It’s a Wonderful Life

A family favorite. A holiday perennial. An American classic. Frank Capra's It's a Wonderful Life was all these and more, a crowning achievement of both the director and his leading man, Jimmy Stewart. Capra and Stewart had recently returned from World War II, and both wanted to make a film reflecting the unsung hero, the small-town common man who endured hardship after hardship in search of the good life. Capra found his inspiration in "The Greatest Gift," a story written by Philip Van Doren Stern as a Christmas card to the author's friends. Under the banner of his new production company, Liberty Films, Capra debuted It's a Wonderful Life just before Christmas, 1946. Continue reading...

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The Nightmare Before Christmas

The residents in the town of Halloween take delight in fright. Each creepy and ugly, they aren’t malicious; scaring is just part of their job - in the delightful 1993 holiday offering by director (and former Disney animator) Tim Burton - The Nightmare Before Christmas. In this merging of two beloved holidays, Burton brought his delightfully macabre story to life with the utilization of stop-motion animation and a wonderful musical score by composer Danny Elfman. The result was a film that quickly became a must-see during every holiday season. Continue reading...