Dec 21: Jingle All the Way
“A harried father decides to dream the impossible dream, to get that year’s hot toy for his son just before Christmas Day.”
Directed by: Brian Levant, Rated: PG, 89 minutes
Well, the world didn’t end today. So, I figured the best way to celebrate such a joyous occassion would be to watch the greatest Christmas movie of all time- Jingle All the Way. Yes folks, the holiday masterpiece starring The Terminator AND Anakin Skywalker. How spoiled are we? It’s a Wonderful Life and A Christmas Story can go drink some spoiled egg nog as they are nowhere near as close to this yuletide gem. It’s got action, it’s got romance (be it through the pervert neighbor played by the late Phil Hartman), it’s got a homicidal maniac (in a kid’s movie!), a Santa crime syndicate, and of course, Arnold Schwarzenegger crawling through a playground to get a ball inside a little girl’s mouth. Oh, The Austrian He-Man also punches a reindeer. Why, you ask? Because he can, folks. Because he can.
In 1996, the biggest toy of the Christmas season is Turbo Man. An action figure that talks and bends and shit. Being the hot merchandise of winter, the toy is impossible to find. Leave it to f**k up parent, Howard (Schwarzy), to be the one dad to forget to pick one up well before stores are sold out. Seeing as his son, Jamie (Jake Lloyd) looks at him as an absolute failure as a father, he tells him that years of never “being there” can easily be forgiven if he gets him a piece of plastic. Thus, on Christmas Eve, Howard sets out on a journey across Minneapolis to find the one thing his bastard kid wants. Personally, I’d be more than happy watching my dad punch Rudolph than getting a little doll for Christmas. But I guess we all have our own priorities. Throughout his gallant Quest for the Spoiled Child, Howard continually runs into the homicidal postman, Myron (Sinbad), who will literally do anything to get a doll for his own son (that we can only assume is made up and made of cardboard). Neither man can find a Turbo Man yet continually search for one, breaking dozens of laws in the process. Seriously, these two men would be considered armed and dangerous and shot on site if the Minneapolis Police Department actually had their shit together. On the home front, as Howard is out and about, his wife, Liz (Rita Wilson) is continually sexually harassed by their forever alone neighbor, Ted (Phil Hartman). Ted is man that knows no boundaries and crosses the line constantly, to the point you’re pretty sure it’s going to end in rape. But, seeing as this is PG, he just ends with a face full of eggnog and a rather awkward conversation with the neighborhood come New Year’s.
Jingle All the Way is a rare kind of film in that it’s one of a kind. It’s the type of movie you love to hate and hate to love and it’s mere existence brings emotion (of some kind) to you upon each viewing. While Christmas comes only once a year, Jingle All the Way is a movie you can watch or ignore. It’s a masterpiece of trash that is certainly memorable and is worth your time if you have any to spare. Presents, quality time with family, and Christmas carols, specials, movies, and traditions really make the season magical. Jingle All the Way does (or does not). F**k it. If you haven’t seen this movie, you never will. If you have, you love the living shit out of it like me. Merry Christmas, you filthy animals. Get in the Choppa!… I need a Twinkie…
Reindeer punching and Sinbad
A severe lack of a sequel- Jingle All the Hay where Schwarzenegger must race through a corn maze to find the toy of the Halloween season- Scarecrow Boy
Overall: A Billion Out of 10