Skip to main content

Christmas Countdown: Christmas with the Cranks (2004)

The usual criticism of Christmas with the Cranks is that it encourages conformity through community intimidation.

The Kranks, a pair of newly empty-nesters (played by Tim Allen and Jamie Lee Curtis) decide to forego the hustle and bustle of Christmas and indulge themselves in a romantic getaway together. Their neighbours begrudge them this decision, and decide to make their lives a living hell of harassment and annoyance as comeuppance. The pod people neighbours' actions are disconcerting.

When the Kranks' extremely spoiled daughter surprises her parents on Christmas Eve that she'll be coming home for Christmas, they decide to make a mad dash attempt to put together their traditional Christmas Eve party in time for her arrival. Of course this can't happen without the help of the neighbours who bullied them throughout the rest of the film.

The film is supposed to speak in favour of community and tradition, but the actions of the neighbours are way overboard and the message is lost amid a sea of uncomfortable and disjointed asymmetric response.

There should be a director's cut of this where the Kranks flip their neighbours off on their way to the airport, after having alerted the police of what they'd been subjected to.


Popular posts from this blog

Solo: A Star Wars Story

Viewer: Han, bubbe, you don't have to explain every small detail of your backstory that was mentioned in the original trilogy.
Han: I was named Solo by an Imperial recruiter.
V: Wait, didn't you detail your father's entire career building Millenium Falcons? How do you not know your last name?
H: ...
V: ...
H: There's a prequel cameo in the third act.
V: Yeah, I'm just going to go ahead and leave, alright?
H: I have a good feeling about this.

Herman Melville and Office Space

Just from gleaning the surface of Office Space one would assume that there isn't anything simmering below the surface except for a raunchy work-comedy, but they would be wrong.
After the harsh critical reception of his greatest work Moby Dick Melville wrote a collection of short stories called Bartleby and Benito Cereno perhaps the greatest slam at the time against industrial America. Bartleby is the story of a Wall Street copyist who has his three employees proof-read and copy law forms. Shortly into the story Bartleby starts responding to work commands with, "I would prefer not to." Frustrated by his employee's subordination the Narrator tries to have him fired but Bartleby refuses to leave the office. The Narrator comes back the following morning to find Bartleby living inside his office. Bartleby becomes increasingly less apt to perform basic functions as eating after he is jailed for trespassing and dies in a jail cell. What at once starts out as a comedy has …

Paprika vs. Inception

Months before Inception hit the theaters forums were alive with rumors that Christopher Nolan either accidentally or intentionally stole some details from another film, the Japanese anime Paprika. The biggest point of comparison for some bloggers and forum runners was the fact that both of the films featured a device that allowed a person, or people, to travel into another’s dreams and delve into their subconscious.
Minor points of comparison include scenes in Paprika where the character Paprika breaks through a mirrored wall by holding her hand to it, as well as a scene where a police detective falls his way down a hallway. Claims have been made that Inception abounds with imagery similar to or exactly like the anime movie, but with the recent release of the film on DVD and Blu-Ray, and with Paprika available for several years now, an examination of the two plots can be made more fully.
Let us begin with the primary claim—Inception stole the idea of a dream machine from Paprika. It …