It’s a Wonderful Life is my sentimental favorite, but A Christmas Story makes me smile. We laugh before they show the funny parts because we know what’s coming. Watching it is our family ritual.
The original narration by the story’s author, the inimitable Jean Shepherd, is a gem. It’s the story of Christmas seen through the eyes of Ralphie, a kid like me. A kid like you. I don’t care how many musicals they make. The original will always be better. Between Jean Shepherd and Darren McGavin, it doesn’t get better than that.
I’m not sure what my favorite scene is, but it may be when the neighbor’s pack of hounds gets the Christmas turkey. Or perhaps the lighting of the world’s ugliest lamp!
If by some stroke of ill luck you haven’t seen it, it plays on most cable channels sometime in December. Just in case we miss it, we have it — and all our favorite Christmas movies — on DVD. It was released last year on Blu-ray.
It is sometimes poignant, but it is never sappy. It succeeds in being nostalgic without sticky sweetness and funny without being annoying. It may be the best role of Darin McGavin’s career.
- Jean Shepherd Reading A Christmas Story On Christmas Eve 1974 (futurelawyer.typepad.com)
- Great Character: Ralphie (“A Christmas Story”) (gointothestory.blcklst.com)
- Liguori: Jean Shepherd Revisited! A Christmas Story – The Musical Should Not Be Missed! (newyork.cbslocal.com)
- A Christmas Story Limited Holiday Gift Pack Giveaway : (Ends 12/12) (shibleysmiles.com)
- A Christmas Story: Revenge of the Bumpus Hounds (longawkwardpause.wordpress.com)