Welcome to the very first of my five special Festive Friday posts. This mini series is very much like my regular Favourites Friday series, except I will only being looking at Christmas films. Though you may not feel Christmassy yet – and I don’t particularly either! – we’re now into December so the holiday season will soon be upon us!
First up is one of my favourite Will Ferrell flicks, Elf.
Released in 2003, Elf is the story of Buddy the Elf. These aren’t your Middle-earth style elves, these are proper Christmas elves that are exactly what you’d expect: small and dressed in little felt suits with a hat and pointy shoes. The only thing out of place is Buddy – he’s a little on the large size…
Elf is a wonderful Christmas film, and there’s three particular reasons why it is always a must watch at Cinematic Delights HQ at this time of the year.
1. The comedy element
There are many famous sayings about laughter and the ability to make people laugh. My favourite has to be: “laughter is the best medicine”. I have several films I like to watch if ever I’m feeling a bit blue or under the weather and Elf is one of them. Buddy is certainly one of Ferrell’s best performances, if not the best. Buddy is such a likeable, fun character who is impossible not to like.
Like any good comedy film there are plenty of quotable lines. One of the best has got to be this one:
2. Family relationships
Christmas is undoubtedly a time for family, and Elf is packed full with family. As he soon find out, Buddy has a large extended family. As well as his adopted father he has his birth father, stepmother and younger brother. He also has feelings for the lovely Jovie, played by Zooey Deschanel.
Elf is very much a film about self discovery, and it’s fun to see how the other family members are affected by Buddy’s appearance. Happily, everyone does get along eventually.
James Caan is great fun as Buddy’s birth father, Walter. A high-flying businessman who works at a children’s book company, Walter doesn’t know what to think when Buddy turns up. His stepmother and half-brother are much more welcoming, with Michael acting as Buddy’s romantic guru regarding Jovie.
Bob Newhart is lovely as Papa Elf, Buddy’s adopted father who supports his son in his decision to find Walter.
3. A real Christmas
Elf portrays Christmas is a very stereotypical manner, which I love. Father Christmas is, as I’ve always imagined, an older fellow with a big white beard, glasses and red suit. Like I said earlier, the elves are small and dressed in little felt suits with a hat and pointy shoes. They all live happily together at the North Pole and yes, there are reindeers as well.
New York City is also how I expect it at Christmas, packed full with shoppers with all the department stores bursting with Christmassy goodness. There’s lots of snow on the ground and decorations fill the streets.
Sometimes, you really do just want a film that is literally bursting to the seams with Christmas!
- What do you think of Elf? Is it a must watch for you?