Happy Christmas Eve and Merry Christmas, everyone! Like many of you, I’m not traveling anywhere this Christmas… it’s just too cumbersome to plan for traveling, even domestically, given this Omnicron surge. Basically the pandemic is far from over, and you know what, I’m feeling blessed that my hubby and I are in good health and we have roof over our heads … things we should never take for granted at any time, but especially these days.
Well, I’m taking a bit of a break from review writing this weekend and I thought I’d post the last Music Break post for the year. I grew up listening to Christmas music as my late mom had piles of Christmas CDs around the house. Hey, it doesn’t even have to be December to appreciate great Christmas songs.
So let me highlight some of my favorites, both from classic and contemporary movies that never fail to put me in the Christmas spirit!
HOME ALONE 2 – Somewhere in My Memory
Well, since I just saw John Williams in concert this past Fall, we’ve got to start with one of the maestro’s best and most enduring Christmas scores. I’m gonna pretend there wasn’t a remake of Home Alone that exists today… I think the first two Home Alone are as perfect a family Christmas movie as you get.
The one song that stuck with me forever is this lovely, heartwarming song that appears in a scene when Kevin is walking on a Wintry suburban street and saw a family gathering through the window and he misses his family. We all miss our loved ones at Christmas… so this song always hits me hard year after year.
ELF – Baby, It’s Cold Outside
Elf is one of my fave Christmas comedies and there’s something so goofy yet innocent about this oversized green elf in this fish-out-of-water story. Like Kevin in Home Alone 2, Will Ferrell‘s character too is lost in New York. Zooey Deschanel has such a gorgeous voice! She’s singing Baby, It’s Cold Outside in this clip, one of the three songs she performed in this movie. I love this song and the duet is pretty cute, though I probably would totally freak out like her too if I saw a man sitting in the bathroom while I was showering!
LAST CHRISTMAS – Last Christmas
I just saw this movie last year and though it’s not perfect, it’s not as bad as the critics made it out to be. The London setting itself is absolutely adorable. The movie’s got its charm and Dame Emma Thompson wrote a bittersweet love story inspired by the classic song by WHAM! As an 80s kid and a big fan of George Michael, it’s one of my all time favorite Christmas songs. I thought the ending with Emilia Clarke dressed as an elf singing the song is a lovely and sweet finale.
SCROOGED – Put A Little Love In Your Heart
I actually saw this 1988 modern-day retelling of Dickens’ A Christmas Carol not that long ago. Bill Murray is perfect as Scrooge, this time portrayed as a selfish and callous TV executive. After being visited by three ghosts on Christmas Eve, he’s transformed into a kinder man in a rousing finale. I love this song, sung by Annie Lennox and Al Green, which became a huge hit around the world. Even though it wasn’t an original song written for the movie, the lyrics suits the story so perfectly.
White Christmas – Irving Berlin
White Christmas is the quintessential classic holiday song and one of my personal favorites, but I didn’t realize it was featured in not one but TWO classic films.
Written by Irving Berlin, he won an Oscar for Best Original Song for the musical Holiday Inn in 1942, performed as a duet by Bing Crosby and Marjorie Reynolds.
Well, the song is featured again a decade later in 1954 in another musical White Christmas, also starring Bing Crosby, co-starring Danny Kaye and Rosemary Clooney. I haven’t seen the movie in its entirety, only clips of them, especially this one featuring the namesake song.
Apparently this movie is neither a sequel nor a remake of Holiday Inn as the storyline and characters are completely different. Both have scenes during Christmas Eve however, but White Christmas‘ setting is around WWII.