Mention the Christmas Story movie and people respond with their favourite classic scenes such as the BB Gun, bullies in the alley, frozen tongue, the lamp of a lady's fishnet stocking leg and many more. A Christmas Story is a 1983 film based on the short stories and semi-fictional anecdotes of author and raconteur Jean Shepherd, including material from his books In God We Trust, All Others Pay Cash and Wanda Hickey's Night of Golden Memories. It was directed by Bob Clark. A must have movie to watch every year and several times a year. It is chicken soup for the soul for the holidays.
A Christmas Story is on its way to becoming an annual holiday classic, one to keep on the shelf with It's a Wonderful Life, the puppet-animated Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, and A Charlie Brown Christmas. It may have been directed by Bob Clark (responsible for the Porky's pictures), but it's based on the childhood memoirs of humorist Jean Shepherd (from his hilarious book In God We Trust: All Others Pay Cash). And it is Shepherd's wry, deadly accurate, and gently nostalgic comic sensibility that shines through in this kid's-eye view of an all-American Christmas in the 1940s. All little Ralphie (Peter Billingsley) wants under the tree on Christmas morning is a Daisy Brand Red-Ryder BB rifle. He not only wants it, he's consumed with an aching desire for it. Unfortunately, his mother (Melinda Dillon) repeatedly crushes his dreams with the familiar, harsh mantra: "You'll shoot your eye out!" Among the movie's highlights are a surrealistic visit with little brother Randy to a department store Santa, and the childlike mixture of delight, pride, and awe with which Ralphie's dad (Darren McGavin) takes possession of a spectacularly gaudy prize he's won in a radio contest. McGavin should have won an award for his splendid comic work as a middle-aged-kid-turned-patriarch who alternates between grown-up temper tantrums and unabashed juvenile joy. --Jim Emerson