Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Christmas with a wizard

Christmas has kind of felt like anything but this year.

My wife is just days away from giving birth. I haven't worked since July 31st. We're trying to save money so we're not even doing stockings this year. The sun set around 9 p.m. on Christmas Eve.

In short, it's not our normal Christmas.

So it was nice to do something Christmas-normal tonight, on Christmas Eve.

Every year we try to watch something "appropriately Christmasy" at Christmastime. For us, "appropriately Christmasy" means, approximately, "something epic in scale, possibly in the realm of fantasy, or at the very least having nice costumes, production design and visual effects."

Honorees for the hallowed Christmas Eve and Christmas night spots have included, in recent years, such films as Where the Wild Things Are, Anonymous, Tangled, The Empire Strikes Back, The Muppets and Disney's A Christmas Carol.

This year, Oz the Great and Powerful joined their number.

It was my second time, of course. My wife had yet to see it.

You may remember that I loved it when I first saw it, bucking the critical consensus by quite a bit. My second viewing cooled some of  my fervor, but I still think it's a really solid fantasy with a lot to say about the magic of movies.

What pleased me most is that my wife dragged herself out of a pregnancy-induced stupor approaching sleep to tell me that she, too, had liked it quite a bit.

Sure, I wanted her to endorse my own perspective on it, since it's a perspective that needs as much help as it can get. More than anything, though, I was glad that on Christmas Eve, she could dream herself away into a world where she's not in physical discomfort all day long, in hot weather that doesn't make that condition any easier.

Merry Christmas to you all, as well. May it be as normal a Christmas as you want it to be. 

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