Thursday, December 15, 2011

Moldy Cheese In Your Stocking: Christmas With a Capital C

Allow me to quote something ridiculous from (cough) comedian Brad Stine: 
“Now conservatives and liberal mind-sets even see sex different. The purpose of sex from the liberal POV is to have pleasure. The problem is, that presupposition is wrong. There are many things our bodies find pleasurable, but the pleasure is a wonderful by-product to the actual purpose of the act. We find pleasure in eating, yet we don't consider the purpose of eating to be able to keep Krispy Kreme Doughnuts in business. No, the purpose of eating is so that you don't die!”

Totally sound argument, right? Don’t you wish this same brilliant mind wrote a book or, I don’t know, combined his standup comedy talents with a Christian rock band to create a TV movie about evil liberals trying to secularize Christmas? Don’t you wish it starred not Alec, not Stephen, not Billy, Not William (who I assumed was a separate Baldwin back in the day), not unrelated but far more awesome Adam, but DANIEL Baldwin?

Well kids, this Christmas With a Capital C (and please tell me there’s an easily titled adult film to be harnessed from that title) you can--but shouldn’t--watch Christmas With a Capital C.
Quick Plot: Welcome to Trapper Falls, a town of 4,000 Christians nestled in the heart of Sarah Palin’s Alaska and lorded over by Mayor Jefferson Darcy--I mean, The Ted McGinley Curse--I mean, Dan Reed. Every Christmas, the town spends a nice chunk of its budget presenting the annual nativity scene complete with hand-carved wooden magi. 

Every Christmas...until now.
Cue the ominous organ with the arrival of Mitch Bright, a big city liberal lawyer returning from San Francisco (where he graduated from Berkeley, of course) to his hometown to take the Christ out of ...
Ugh. I can’t even say it.
When I was in fifth grade, the big project for our art class was to sculpt a small clay bust, paint it, then hand it off to the teacher to bake in the kiln overnight for the color to set. We were excited to see the results, but the next day, Mrs. Jones reported that the janitor had accidentally turned the kiln off prematurely and as a result, our Michaelangelos in the making came out slightly shriveled, weirdly discolored, and as my friend once said about the Rugrats, as if someone had eaten them and vomited them back up.

That’s kind of what Daniel Baldwin looks like.
And yet, he’s one of the least sickening things in the movie.
Darcy--er, Dan, has a brother. A brother played by famed Christian comedian Brad Stine, a horrid little man who likes to whine about how sex isn’t for pleasure but procreation and Krispy Kreme doughnuts keep us alive (or something). Maybe that explains why the film sets up a romance between his character and a cute barista but then never seems to want to acknowledge that it might blossom, perhaps because there’s not a single audience member who would actually want to think about Brad Stine experiencing his holy procreational orgasm.

Christmas With a Capital C is, according to the end credits, “Based on the hit song by Go Fish Christmas With a Capital C.” As I’m sure The Christmas Shoes will soon reveal, that’s always a good thing, right? Especially when the song is aided or inspired by (gag) the standup of Stine, whose proudest moment of the film comes when he gets up on a table in a coffee shop to shout about how Christians started the United States of America (coughcough by killing a lot of Native Americans coughcough) and now they represent 98% of the country who believe Jesus is the reason for the season. Since that’s the case, we shouldn’t even try to pronounce the word “Hanukah” (it has two spellings, for goodness sake) or bow down to these “god haters” who have the nerve to drink coffee with soy milk.

Yup, Baldwin drinks coffee with soy milk and Stine takes it black, because he’s apparently a real man and his beard and Christianity prove it.
Lessons Learned
An Alaskan can hang outside in a t-shirt in the middle of December quite comfortably
Christmas is an awesome time of year. AN AWESOME TIME OF YEAR I SAY!

Stoning completely ruins your makeup
Seasons Greetings works for everybody. Except for jerks
Stray Observation
So the whole instigating plot device of Christmas With a Capital C is that there are some beautiful wooden statues of the full manger scene. When we finally see them, the wise men are certainly impressive. But let’s face it: Baby Jesus, kinda ugly.

Montage Mania
You KNOW we need a 'tear down the Jesus stuff to replace with cold secular images of holiday cheer' sequence

Token Slapstick Alert 
Having Mr. Darcy's son cast a skiier gives ample opportunity for falls

Stocking Stuffer or Stuffed With Coal?
I don’t mean to write this review as an anti-religious rant. I respect the right for everyone to celebrate (or not celebrate) Christmas in their own way, be that midnight mass or a trip to the movie theater. The problem is that Christmas With a C doesn’t respect that there is that “2%” (which trust me, is bigger) who get a whole lot else from December and more importantly, aren't aggressively close-minded and so dang ANGRY about it.

Or gross. These dudes? Kinda gross.


  1. I only found out later that the wretched little bearded man was a comedian of some sort. I can only imagine what his shows must be like. You were kinder to this than it deserved. I even know a Christian filmmaker who was pissed off by the preachiness of this movie.

    I also didn't know that big city liberals used so much hair oil. Or maybe he's just a naturally moist Baldwin?

  2. The wretched little man is the very personification of backpfeifengeischt (a face that needs punching). Ugh ugh ugh!

    Aren't all the Baldwins naturally moist? Even Alec seems to have some drippiness from his head...

  3. Have you tackled Midnight Clear yet? It was the director of that who told me he thought Cap C deserved all the abuse I could heap on it.

    In the Netflix holiday category, look up the Andy Griffith Christmas show. It tells the same story as Cap C but does it in a completely non-obnoxious manner. We've been plowing through the Christmas eps of the various TV shows now. Best by far was "The Blue Carbuncle", the Victorian Christmas ep from the Jeremy Brett Sherlock Holmes series.

  4. "Yup, Baldwin drinks coffee with soy milk and Stine takes it black, because he’s apparently a real man and his beard and Christianity prove it."

    BOOM! That pissed me off. This movie is ridiculous and offensive and crazy. Ugh.

  5. Midnight Clear is on the queue! Hope to get to it soon. And I'll look into these other Netflix offerings, thanks as always Trever!

    And right Christine? The coffee order-it just hung as if for the audience to nod knowingly at this big city liberal's snobbery.

  6. I only hope these people are equally supportive of majority religious rule if they ever move into a Muslim-dominated area that wants Sharia written into the courts...

    Stine's rant while jumping on the restaurant furniture was so absolutely OTT we were just flabbergasted. It was like that recent Rick Perry anti-gay ad, "Homosexuals are dying for our country in today's military and we're not even allowed to make them feel ashamed and freakish." It was just, holy crap, this is so patently offensive that I'm stunned someone is saying this.

  7. Definitely an open mouth moment. I caught a LOT of flies watching this movie. Not quite as many as The Nutcracker In 3D, but there were plenty of "Seriously? We're going THERE?" scenes that just left me feeling so gosh darn icky with a capital I.