Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Dark Christmas

It's surprising - or maybe it's not - how many Christmas movies have a dark tone.  What has become the standard Christmas classic, It's a Wonderful Life, certainly explores some grim areas.  Everyone has their favorite dark Christmas films, and here's a few I enjoy.  I always like watching these while drinking egg nog laced with rum, but it goes without saying that you can nix the rum in that blend and substitute your liquor of choice.

There's Allen Baron's 1961 film noir, Blast of Silence, an austerely beautiful low budget gem about a hit man on an assignment in New York City during Christmastime.

Christmas season figures as the background to Syndey Pollack's Three Days of the Condor, and the film culminates in the great, tense scene played out to carolers singing "God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen".

There's no bleaker Christmas season movie than Stanley Kubrick's Eyes Wide Shut. A fraying marriage, sexual frustration, the complications and setbacks that come with finding the right gift - when did Christmas ever seem so hard to get through?  A slowly unwinding bad dream of a movie.

Last but not least, and on the lighter side, there's Christmas Tales from the Crypt style. This is the full ...And All Through the House segment from that 1972 British anthology film directed by Freddie Francis.  Poor Joan Collins. She has one hell of a night before Christmas.

Enjoy the holidays...

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