Bored at work on Christmas. I figure everyone is probably with family and friends as I will be later.
So I saw "It's a Wonderful Life" for the umteen millionth time last night and again- cried like a baby.
Earlier in the day yesterday I had the pleasure of hearing the radio version which is shorter but had many of the same actors i.e. Jimmy Stewart and a live audience. I also hear the old radio version of Dicken's "A Christmas Carol" with Lionel Barrymore (great voice and is old man Potter in "It's a Wonderful Life") and later they played "Miracle on 34th Street".
As I watched "It's a Wonderful Life" it finally surfaced from my sub-conscience why this is my favorite movie on so many levels. It's classic story telling. The characters likeable, the actors stupendous and the attention to detail is remarkable. The latter was my main focus last night. After hearing it on the radio, to see it was ten times more fun. The ball ornament on the end of the banister at the bottom of the stairway that comes off in George Bailey's hand; to the snow falling in the background, stopping when he isn't born and starting when he returns; to Zuzu's petals, the bloody lip, the deaf ear....there's dozens of details....fun stuff!
So I got to thinking about all the Christmas/holiday movies out there and wondered what are your favorite top 5 AND why is #1 your favorite?
My top five looks like this:
1. It's a Wonderful Life- Jimmy Stewart & Donna Reed 1946
2. A Christmas Carol- Reginald Owen & Gene Lockhart 1938
3. A Christmas Story- Peter Billingsley & Darren McGavin 1983
4. Lillies of the Field- Sydney Poitier & Lilia Skala 1963
5. Trading Places- Eddie Murphy & Dan Aykroyd 1983
"Lillies of the Field" doesn't have a direct link to Christmas but it's always shown this time of year. The song "Amen" is as close to Christmas as it gets. There was a sequel in 1979 called "Christmas Lillies of the Field" with Billy Dee Williams and Maria Schell but it wasn't nearly as good.
Sorry if you're offended but I gotta say- Merry Christmas!