Favorite Christmas Movies: Part 2

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white_christmas

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White Christmas, the 1954 film about two former soldier who turn song and dance men and who help their former commander as he attempts to run a floundering ski resort, has special meaning to me. It stars Bing Crosby, Danny Kaye, and Rosemary Clooney and was directed by Michael Curtiz. It features the songs of Irving Berlin.  As a major piece of American film history, that would be enough to be of interest to me, but it has a much more profound connection.

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My parents were both of “the greatest generation,” which is a description with which I agree. They were born and raised during the depression and were part of the multitudes of America who fought and supported World War II. My father was a Marine, and my mother worked in the Signal Corps.  This group of Americans had a toughness that was forged in the fire of great tumult, both national and international.

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https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Signal_Corps_%28United_States_Army%29

 My mother loved this movie, and it was a tradition in our family to watch it when it aired on television, which was, if I remember correctly, every Christmas Eve. If not that night, then it was always on a nearby night. Of course, as a child who was born a while after World War II, it was all ancient history to me then, but for my mother and father, it spoke directly to their lives and to their hopes and dreams.

Both of my parents have been gone for quite a while now, about 20 years–they were married for 48 years and died within 2 years of each other. As I have become older, I have learned to appreciate what my parents did for us, which, I have to admit, when I was young and stupid, I did not. To paraphrase Mark Twain, –it is amazing how smart my parents got as I got older. And I appreciate and try to continue some of the family traditions, including watching White Christmas, but now with my beloved wife.  I still feel the connection to my Mom and Pop when I watch this movie.  This movie speaks to the connection of people, of hope, of joy, of happiness, and of the power of music.

And I wish we would have a white Christmas, but I think it will not happen this year.

Perhaps next year.

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38 thoughts on “Favorite Christmas Movies: Part 2

  1. Charles, this post spoke to me in more than one way. The movie is indeed a true classic…but your words about parents and how we find them getting smarter as each year goes by stirred all sorts of equally classic memories in my life. My relationship with my folks, who divorced in my late teens, may not feature all the “Hallmark” moments some others have with their parents, but I cherish them nonetheless…especially at this time of year. As we get older and mature we figure out those older and more mature than we were really did have a clue…really did have knowledge and wisdom our limited life experience allowed us. A great, timely post for me. Thanks for sharing this and I wish all the best to you, yours and all your readers for this Holiday season!

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  2. Watching White Christmas is one of my favorite holiday traditions. I adore corny. With sons and daughters-in-love in the military (actually one d-i-l works for the Signal Corp now) the movie has a whole new meaning for me. P.S. You two are too cute! Y’all make my heart smile.

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  3. Thanks for sharing your memories and the film is a favorite of mine too. I should see it again soon. It was a long time since I saw it. But I have seen it many times. Never get tired of it 🙂

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  4. I too love and watch this movie every year with my Navy husband. It’s my #2 favorite. Growing up I watched WWII black and white movies (often by myself) and developed a great respect for our Greatest Generation and the military. My #1 favorite is ‘It’s a Wonderful Life’. It puts into focus what’s important; a great beginning for the new year ahead.

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  5. artemisdelmar

    I love this movie as well! I own a copy of it and went to go see it at the Steel Stacks cinema when they aired it. I too watch it every Christmas!

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