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Movies From 100+ year old silent films to new releases here we discussed the good, the bad and the ugly of Christmas at the movies.


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Old 07-11-2013, 07:23 AM
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Christmas Tree Christmas Film Festival July 2013: White Christmas

We're watching -- what else? -- White Christmas, in July for our ongoing Christmas Film Festival. Read about White Christmas by

The article asks the question: White Christmas might be a classic...but is it any good?

We say "no".

Yes, it has Crosby and it has White Christmas. But little else.

No story, no suspense, no drama, no conflict, nothing but song after song of what isn't Christmas.

That's not to say we don't like it. That's not to say we don't watch it.

But it never gets ranked up there as amongst the best and there is a reason for that.

What are your thoughts on White Christmas?
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Old 07-11-2013, 08:04 AM
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It's essentially a widescreen Irving Berlin songfest. If I recall correctly, the official title of the film is "Irving Berlin's White Christmas." It's big and colorful to show off the brand-new widescreen VistaVision process---this was the first Paramount release showcasing the widescreen format.

If you like big musical numbers, you'll enjoy it. If you like excellent singing and dancing, you'll enjoy it. If you like good acting/comedy performances (Bing Crosby, Danny Kaye, Mary Wickes), you'll enjoy it. The plot, however, is a clothesline to hang musical numbers on. (To be fair, it had relevance when the film was released in 1954, less than 10 years after the end of World War II.)

But it's a holiday classic if the viewers make it so. We see it year after year when we're in a happy holiday mood, and it has become part of the holiday experience for many of us. (Yes, I own the DVD.) And that big, beautiful Technicolor finale with those beautiful red Christmas gowns ... when the snow begins to fall ... well, it gets the desired response! And the quiet "Count Your Blessings" number featuring Crosby and Rosemary Clooney is one of the top romantic moments in Christmas movies.

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Old 07-11-2013, 06:39 PM
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Ok, I prefer Holiday Inn to White Christmas, but to label WC not good is a bit harsh.

The chemistry between Bing and Kaye was sharp, Rosemary Clooney was never more beautiful, the color was lush, the heart-warming tribute to "the old man," the confusion over Bing's motive, the cute Snow number on the dining car with the napkin and parsley, the snowfall at the end of the film, Bing and the rest of the cast in Santa suits... heck, I want to pop the movie in my player right now.

It's probably not in my Christmas film top 10, but to say it's not good, is bit overboard even for one playing devil's advocate.

As for the thin plot, well, fine, but every movie doesn't need to be The God Father, particularly musicals. No doubt it was pieced together as a vehicle for Bing singing Berlin, but to me that combination alone is reason enough for a movie.

And there is romantic conflict when Clooney misunderstands Bing's motive.

I quite enjoy the military opening - which had to have influenced Robert Altman's MASH - and there really is no way to convey how much The title song meant to the servicemen during WWII.

Well, I've rambled enough. The film is a Christmas classic in terms of popularity and that makes it GOOD to me.
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