Finally, after a year of waiting, the holiday season has arrived. Every house on the street is decorated with multicolored lights and plastic reindeer.
The stores break out their best merchandise for their best sales. And then there are the holiday movies.
From A Christmas Carol to National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation, the holiday movie tradition has become a big part of manyfamily’s holiday celebration.
Everyone has their favorite, and the holidays just don’t seem complete without them. But one movie stands out. A Christmas Story still puts a smile on the face of adults and children alike even now, 20 years after it was made.
Director Bob Clark’s A Christmas Story follows the misadventures of 10-year-old Ralph Parker, beautifully portrayed by child actor Peter Billingsley, during one Christmas season in the 1940s.
All Ralph wants for Christmas is an authentic Red Rider BB gun, but one person stands between him and his idea of “the perfect Christmas gift:” his mother.
Melinda Dillion plays Ralph’s mother to perfection, complete with her infamous catchphrase, “You’ll shoot your eye out!”
As the holiday season proceeds, Ralph concocts scheme after scheme to get his hands on his dream gift.
Subtle hints, helping out his mother and father (nicknamed “the Old Man”), and a school assignment based on the theme “What I Want For Christmas” start out promising, but each attempt blows up in his face.
Ralph’s hints are met with stern opposition. Desperate, Ralph turns to Santa Claus for help. But when he shares the one and only item on his Christmas wish list with the department store Santa, the jolly old elf utters the defiant words that Ralph can never seem to rid himself of: “You’ll shoot your eye out, kid!”
With Darren McGavin as the Old Man, and Ian Petrella as Randy’s hilariously-accident-prone brother Randy, A Christmas Story is sure to bring out the child in everyone.
From Randy’s winter get-up to the infamous scene where Ralph’s best friend gets his tongue stuck to the school flagpole and beyond, this laugh-a-minute holiday classic beats sappy holiday flicks like It’s A Wonderful Life any day.
Marta Rusek can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org