Monday, December 24, 2007

Merry Christmas to everyone!

Tonight is Christmas night, and I couldn't help but share some of my favourite Christmas films with all of you. Here's my top three:

# 3: Home Alone

In this movie starring Macaulay Culkin (whom we haven't seen in a while, have we?), Kevin is left alone in his home in the rich suburbs of Chicago. He vainly tries to contact his parents, and the other way round; while his mother does everything to get back from Paris, he actually enjoys being home alone, busying himself with scaring the pizza man away for instance. He also manages to prevent Harry and Marvin (two burglars) from breaking into his house. Here's a brilliant summary of the atmosphere of the movie:

# 2: National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation

This comedy, starring Chevy Chase as Clark Griswold, is quite difficult to summarize (especially when you don't have much time due to the exams). Basically, the plot revolves around the Griswold family, which have to organise a Christmas supper with the whole family. Finding a proper tree seems to be a kerfuffle, but that's nothing compared to what happens next… For instance, Clark installed 250 strands of lights (i.e. rows of lightning bulbs) on the roof, but when he tried to light them, it didn't work… But look at this:

I also recommend the sledge scene, the dinner scene and the fried cat scene.

# 1: The Muppet Christmas Carol

This is unddoubtedly my favourite Christmas film… but don't ask me why. For a more detailed summary, can I ask you to turn to the Wikipedia entry or to the article I posted today on my blog. But my point in writing this entry was sharing with you a video from the film: the one I chose is (obviously) linked to Statler and Waldorf, respectively my own and Martin's new nicknames. In this film, like other Muppets, they play characters appearing in Dickens's Christmas Carol (the book on which the movie is based – it is self-explanatory). That's the reason why they play the late Jacob and Robert Marley, Ebenezer Scrooge's old employers. In the night preceding Christmas, they appear to him as ghosts, warning him of his terrible fate if he keeps being mean and grim. Listen to their song:

In fact, the book only features Jacob Marley, but the writers added the character of Robert Marley ("Robert" being an obvious reference to Bob Marley) in order not to separate Statler and Waldorf.

I would also like to add that my favourite quote in this movie is uttered by Scrooge:
If I could work my will, every idiot who goes about with 'Merry Christmas' on his lips'd be boiled with his own turkey [originally: "pudding"], and buried with a stake of holly through his heart.
Dickens was a genius!

PS. On 17 December, the first-year students had to watch four episodes of Shakespeare: The Animated Tales: Macbeth, Romeo and Juliet, Othello and Hamlet. In fact, I had been expecting an opportunity to talk about this great play, which has been adapted and referred to in many ways, not only to in other plays, but also in books and films, e.g. The Lion King (as an allegory). The greatest actors, such as Sir Laurence Olivier, starred as Hamlet. Even Arnold Schwarzenegger. Check this out:

All right: it was just a fake trailer for a fictional action movie based on Hamlet, a sort of filmic "mise en abyme" in the middle of what is — in my opinion — the most brilliant action (and comedy) film of all times: Last Action Hero. It would have been great, though, to see the full-length version of such a movie… I warmly recommend Last Action Hero (even the French version) to you all, if you don't know how to spend your "free time" before the exams.

Merry Christmas to everyone!

[PS. This blog entry was edited on 6 February 2008 on the basis of the corrections suggested by Professor Vandelanotte.]


Martin Cugnon said...

[To Statler]
Thanks and a Merry Christmas to you. As your muppet friend, I had to be the first to post a comment to your entry. I'll watch all the videos when I have time.

justine vds said...

'Home alone' is one of my favourite movies, too.
I enjoyed watching the scene that you inserted in your contribution!

Simon Lab@ said...

[to Waldorf]

My dear Muppet friend, thanks for this first comment. I thought it was high time someone polluted this blog by posting something rather silly… You'll definitely enjoy the videos, especially that with the cat…

— Statler

[to Justine VDS]

Thanks for your comment! I'm happy to see that I'm not the only fool who likes that film. The pizza delivery man scene is surely one of the best. It was really silly. Perhaps you could watch this re-cut trailer of the movie… I hope you'll enjoy!

Cécile* said...

Schwarzie: "To be... or not to be? Not to be!" BOUM! :D

Cécile* said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Simon Lab@ said...

Hello, Cécile!

I'm glad to see that you've read and watched everything till the end. I'm also happy you like the video with Governator. This fake trailer is brilliant. I'm gonna put the French version of it on my YouTube account.

Simon Lab@ said...

Hello again!

The Hamlet video in French (with Arnie voiced over by Daniel Beretta) is online. Please check it out.