DVD Holiday Movies

November 14th, 2007 carlajc Posted in Entertainment, Just For Fun, Movie Review 2 Comments »

Maybe I have obsessive-compulsive disorder, but I watch the same holiday movies, year after year. I used to have to comb through my TV Guide every week from the end of October until Christmas, hoping not to miss any of them. But now that we live in the DVD age, I’ve been set free from that bondage.

Here’s my must-watch list, month-by-month:


To Kill a Mockingbird Collector’s Edition

To Kill a MockingbirdI know most people wouldn’t consider this a holiday movie. But those who’ve watched it would probably agree that the final moments invoke the spirit of Halloween. I won’t ruin the ending for those who haven’t seen it; I’ll just say that it’s scary in the way that only old-fashioned story-telling can be. There are no special effects; it isn’t even in color. The characters have been so well-developed by the end, however, you feel like you’re right in that black-and-white world of Atticus Finch (played with distinction by Gregory Peck) and his children, Scout and Jem. I always make sure to watch this right around Halloween, but you don’t have to wait until next year. No matter when you watch it, this is about as close to perfect as a movie can be.

DVD extras (on two discs):

  • Interactive menus
  • Scene access
  • Cast and crew interview
  • Featurette: Fearful Symmetry: The Making of To Kill a Mockingbird
  • Featurette: Movie by Gregory Peck’s daughter Cecilia that chronicles both her father’s speaking engagements and his later years
  • Audio commentary by director Robert Mulligan and producer Alan Pakula
  • Original trailer
  • Subtitles


Home for the Holidays

Home for the HolidaysMy choice for November isn’t quite as highbrow as To Kill a Mockingbird. In fact, it’s probably a 180-degree turn from Scout and Jem’s wholesome world. But that’s okay, because this movie has something Mockingbird doesn’t: it’s hilarious. The movie follows Claudia, played by Holly Hunter, as she joins her dysfunctional family for Thanksgiving. When she meets up with her brother, played by Robert Downey Jr., at the home of her crazy parents, and her uptight sister and brother-in-law, the action gets progressively weirder. But it isn’t all craziness; there’s a love story, too, as Claudia connects with her brother’s friend who has come along for the ride. By the time the movie ends, you’ll probably have had at least a few really good laughs, along with the satisfaction of watching someone who doesn’t know which end is up find love.

DVD extras:

  • Scene access
  • Trailer
  • Interactive menus
  • Audio commentary by director Jodie Foster
  • Subtitles


White Christmas

White ChristmasI’ve literally watched this movie almost every Christmas season since I was a little girl. As corny as it is, it never wears thin. There was something magical about the combination of Danny Kaye and Bing Crosby. And when you add Vera Ellen’s dancing, Rosemary Clooney’s singing and Edith Head’s costumes; you have an infinitely watchable movie. Schmaltzy? Absolutely. But that’s one of the things I love about it. If you watch the movie, make sure to catch the DVD extras so you can hear Rosemary Clooney share some of the experiences she had while making the film.

DVD extras:

  • Interactive menus
  • Scene access
  • Cast and crew interviews
  • Retrospective interview with Rosemary Clooney
  • Audio commentary with Rosemary Clooney
  • Two original theatrical trailers
  • Production stills
  • Subtitles

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