Thursday, December 18, 2008
"You see, George,
you've really had a wonderful life."
My all-time VERY FAVORITE Christmas movie (and, in fact, one of my very favorite movies in general--in my Top Ten, for sure) is "It's a Wonderful Life." My Dad--who is quite the movie afficionado and considers it one of his very favorites too--introduced me to it when I was maybe 12- or 13-years-old. It was always a tradition to watch the movie during the holidays so, as an estimate, I'd guess that I've seen it at least 25 times.
Today, watching "It's a Wonderful Life" is now a tradition in our family too. We pick out a night when we can all sit back, pop some popcorn, and enjoy the classic film together...laughing, and crying, and crying some more (although we've seen it countless times and we know exactly how it's going to end!).
You can't imagine, though, how wonderful it is to see the movie on the big screen in one of the grandest movie theatres anywhere!
Last night we watched "It's a Wonderful Life" at the Alabama Theatre in downtown Birmingham. The Theatre was built in the 1920s by Paramount Studios as a way to showcase their movies; the owners filed for bankruptcy in 1997 and, soon after, it was bought by the historical commission and returned to its glory. Today, the velvet drapes and gold gilding and beautiful box seats and Wurlitzer pipe organ transport you to a time when going to the movies was truly an "event."
The girls had never been to the Theatre before and they were amazed at how big and majestic itwas. Delaney asked something like, "Why can't all movie theatres be like this?" and I kinda wondered the same thing myself.
And the movie?
The movie, as always, was well...wonderful...and I laughed and cried and cried all over again--for the 26th time or so.
The girls loved it (well, except for Sydney, who fell asleep shortly before Clarence the Angel arrived. She told me today that we were going to have to watch it again at home so she could "see how it ended.")
What makes the movie so great? Well, it's got wonderful acting (the actors just seemed perfect for their roles; and Jimmy Stewart said himself it was his favorite of all his movie roles) and witty and incisive writing, and lots of sweet humor and, of course, a sentimental (but, oh so true!) message.
This morning, on the way to school, the girls and I were still quoting lines from the movie. And talking about how great it was.
If you haven't seen the movie lately, I urge you to rent it or buy it and see how fantastically it holds up over the years. And if it doesn't make you believe in the value of your life and make you count your blessings, I'd have to say you're quite the Scrooge (which means you really need to watch it! :-)
And speaking of movies...which holiday movie do you love? I'd love to hear about whether you have any movie-watching traditions during the holidays. Maybe I can find a new film to love!
On that note...have a wonderful evening...and remember that "No man is a failure who has friends."