Obligatory Holiday-Related Post: One in a Series

Since Pub Quiz is over for the year, I thought it would be a nice time to enjoy $4 movie night at the local AMC. Cathy and I decided to see Fred Claus — Christine had a date with House, plus she would rather see Beowulf. I figure the two of them can do that one next week without me.

Unbeknownst to me, however, at the beginning of the month the theater changed its policy. It no longer has $4 night with a free small popcorn on Tuesdays. Instead, movies are $5 all day Monday-Thursday, and the free popcorn night is now on Wednesdays. (And I think you only get a free popcorn if you're in the movie watcher club or something. Whatever.)

Cathy gives it a general thumbs-down because it got too schmaltzy at the end and there wasn't enough Vince being Vince. I knew going in that the reviews were generally unfavorable, but I like Vince Vaughn and his whole schtick, so I didn't care. At any rate I must have been in the mood for some schmaltz, because I liked it. It's nowhere near the status of A Christmas Story, my number-one all-time holiday flick, or even National Lampoon's Holiday Vacation, which is Cathy's number-one all-time holiday flick, but it had some cute moments.

Vince Vaughn doing his best Elvis impersonation in FRED CLAUS

What bothered me more than the sappy moments at the end was the incessant hair-combing on the part of the middle-aged couple in front of us. The guy kept running his fingers through the woman's hair, perhaps in an attempt to be romantic — maybe they were on a date? — but it just looked awkward and painful because his hand would get stuck on a little tangle, and then he'd yank it a little and continue combing, then start at the top and do it again. Ugh. I wanted to smack his hand and tell him to stop it. Why she didn't, I don't know. She chose the subtle approaches of leaning her head away (which didn't work because then he just extended his arm so he could reach) and then taking his hand and holding it in both of hers (which backfired when she wanted to use her hands for something else, like snacks). I found it all very bizarre and unsettling.

Anyhow . . . Someone just e-mailed me this photo, and I thought I'd share. To appreciate the full effect, you may want to click on it and enlarge it.




  1. Oh my. That tree puts the a** in classy.

    I tend to be more of a traditionalist in my Christmas movies (It's a Wonderful Life), but I am a big fan of Scrooged. But then again, I prefer the Rankin-Bass shorts (Rudoloph, Year without a Santa Claus, etc.)

    I am still working on the Christmas Spirit. I had it here somewhere.

  2. What's sad is that I could immediately identify the brand of beer used to create that tree. It's good stuff, too, but I find it too expensive for me to consume on a regular basis.

    The Rankin-Bass stuff creeps me out a little. Have you seen the Alltel commerical that uses Rankin-Bass style stop-motion? That I can tolerate. But that may be because I have a soft spot for Alltel commericals in general. The geeks make me laugh, and I even find Chad kind of cute, if not exactly hot in a Matt Czuchry sort of way.

    Hmm. Maybe that's sadder than the beer-identification thing, I don't know.

  3. I definitely wanted to see that movie. Even assuming it was schmaltzy, although I'm a tad disappointed to hear that there wasn't enough Vince being Vince.

    I love nearly all Christmas cheese. From "Wonderful Life" to "Scrooged" to "A Muppet Family Christmas" and "The Santa Clause." Bring 'em on! I currently have "White Christmas" on the DVR and borrowed "Polar Express" from the library. I'm ready to be inundated with Christmas spirit!

  4. You know, I decided that something about Santa gave me the heebie-jeebies too.

    I think I'm gonna stick with my Christmas Vacation marathon. To me, nothing says Christmas more than Randy Quaid saying, "Shitter's full."

    The Muppet Christmas Carol isn't horrible either.

    If I EVER decide to decorate for Christmas, I'm totally doing that beer bottle tree. Who's down for a party?