Emilio’s Christmas Flicks

Posted: December 2, 2011 by Emilio Garofalo Neto in Seasonal, Uncategorized
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Well, here is my take in the list of movies to watch during Christmas season. John Perritt did a great job at finding good stuff for his list and decorating it; mine in comparison is, let’s say, meek and mild.

You need to understand something first: I am from Brazil, a country situated in the so called Southern Hemisphere. In this way the seasons here happen in opposite order as in the USA. So Christmas here happens during Summer. We do not have a Christmas school break in which we have a nice movie/family season to watch flicks drinking hot chocolate while the snow falls. Christmas is right in the middle of summer break, so the movie tradition here is much smaller; we are too busy playing in the water. And of course, being hot weather things are quite different: Santa sweats like a maniac, we go to the beach during Xmas and so on. Another disclaimer: I find Christmas movies usually to be pretty bad. Rare exceptions. I know what you are thinking: “grinch-hearted blogger.”

My favorites, in no particular order:

The Grinch stole the Christmas

Not Jim Carrey’s live-action, but the old cartoon. Perritt also mentioned this (he may have telepathically stolen the idea from my head). Man, I used to watch this thing every year. I remember something funky about his heart being small and that used to freak me out mightily. Need to rewatch this one.

Pan’s Labyrinth

This is one of my all-time favorite movies. I love it dearly. I will, one of those days, write a post on it. This is a good movie that I like to watch every year, and usually at this season. It is set in Spanish and it is well worth the effort of reading some subtitles. Guillermo Del Toro at his finest. Behold the trailer

The nightmare before Christmas

Tim Burton wrote (but not directed) this lunacy, this creepy story full of interesting stuff. And of weird stuff. It involves the idea of a man (?!) that finds out about the Xmas season and suggests to his people replacing Halloween with Christmas; and the many decidedly weird things and characters that accompany it. Just watch it.


Remember: Brazil-December-Summer. So this is the kind of thing we would watch at beach/Christmas season, and of course, decide to stay in the sand. Like scared little girls. At least we had soccer.


Another one that used to spook me. They showed this every year in December. All those rules. I was always a bit concerned that someone would gift me a Gizmo and I would end up messing up the rules, feeding him in the wrong time, getting him wet and all that… OS Gremlins, a true nightmare before Christmas. I know grown adults who only watched this as children and who were so spooked that they refuse to see it today, in which occasion they would sigh with relief at discovering that the movie is funnier than scarier.


Bill Murray is the man. Here he has to deal with the wickedness of his ways and heart. Lovely and funny movie. The ghosts of Xmas past are there to teach him what life is about. And if you are not careful, you may learn a lesson or two yourself…

Die Hard

This classic, #epicwin action movie is set during Christmas. Of course, people are too busy running to and from terrorists to bother with mistletoe, but the delicious movie uses several Christmas songs and is quite good, having set the tone for action movies for decades now. It has a magnificent villain; superb action; it has great phrases, such as “Ho Ho Ho now I have a machine gun.” So, there. Here are some videos of scenes from DH 1 and DH2 coupled with the Xmas song I hate the most (warning, there is some red syrup that looks like blood in the video).

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