IT’S A SPECIAL HOLIDAY INSTALLMENT OF CINEMA SATURDAY!
We all have our secret favorite – you know, that overly sweet, sentimental and sappy holiday movie. Go ahead, admit it! Which one is your favorite – your “must see” in order to make the holiday season bright? Is it “A Charlie Brown Christmas?” Maybe your favorite is “A Wonderful Life” or “White Christmas?” Perhaps you favour “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” or Patrick Stewart’s tremendous portrayal of “Scrooge?”
For me, Christmastime isn’t Christmastime without Maureen, Natalie and Kris Kringle in the original “MIRACLE ON 34TH STREET.” Winner of 3 Academy Awards, and Nominee for Best Picture, MIRACLE tells the story of a skeptical little girl who doubts the existence of Santa Claus, and her mother who doubts the existence of ‘Prince Charming.’ It was young Natalie Wood’s first major role, although, simultaneously, she was filming “THE GHOST AND MRS. MUIR” (another favorite of mine). In fact, it is said that Natalie would play Gene Tierney‘s daughter, “Anna,” in the morning, then hop over to Stage 3 and 6 to be “Susan” in MIRACLE!
MIRACLE is a lesson for all of us, for all times – it makes us question what we would think if we ran across an old man who not only looked like Santa Claus, but confidently claimed that he was? What if we came across someone who looked like the guardian angel or fairy godmother we’ve always imagined, who confidently claimed that he or she was? MIRACLE was released as a light comedy, but it goes much deeper than intended. It asks us to trust our hearts and imagination; to let that sweet innocence of our youth come out to quash our cynical minds. To quote the movie, “Faith is believing in things when common sense tells you not to.”
Find MIRACLE on your TV schedule, or Netflix, or Amazon Prime, or, better yet, add the DVD to your holiday movie collection; then, for one evening, forget about shopping, planning, decorating and all of the other commercialism of Christmas. Cuddle up on the couch, light the fireplace (and blast the air conditioning if you live were I live!), grab a fluffy blanket, some hot cocoa and some popcorn, and enjoy re-introducing yourself to my favorite holiday movie of all time – “MIRACLE ON 34TH STREET!”
WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE HOLIDAY MOVIE??