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Holiday Gift Guide - Part IV

December 23rd, 2006

Part IV of the Holiday Gift Guide is aptly named because if you are still shopping for gifts at this late date, every other word out of your mouth has exactly four letters. Hopefully there's enough ideas in these four installments to find a gift for everyone on your list.

The final batch, in order of desperation...

For those who like their nuclear families to be practically radioactive
Name: Oblongs - The Complete Twisted Series - Buy from Amazon
Description: Not your typical cartoon, the show is about the Oblongs, a family who live in a toxic swamp and have to deal with the mutations that are commonplace as a result.
Pros: Very funny, very twisted show that unfortunately only lasted 13 episodes. (That's better than it did it Australia where it was canceled mid-episode.) Fans of other Adult Swim shows like Home Movies will most likely really enjoy this show.
Cons: It stars a family of mutants, and not the good kind with super powers. I'm talking the kind with strange growths and deformities. In other words, many will find this show completely offensive.

For those who think, 'bethree' is a word
Name: Looney Tunes - Golden Collection, Volume Four - Buy from Amazon
Description: 60 more shorts from the vaults of Warner Bros. including the only Bugs Bunny cartoon to win an Oscar.
Pros: With more than 700 shorts to choose from, there are still a ton of classics in this set. And the special features continue the tradition of being top notch.
Cons: While the overall quality level is very high, it is still not as good as the first three volumnes.

For those who think the time is right to start healing wounds
Name: World Trade Center - Buy from Amazon
Description: A look at two men who went into the burning towers to rescue people, only to need rescuing themselves.
Pros: One of the best movies from Oliver Stone in a decade and the 2-disc set is amazing.
Cons: For those hoping for a little more JFK-like conspiracy theory in this movie will be sadly disappointed.

For those who have been eagerly awaiting Val Kilmer's return to comedy.
Name: Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang - Buy from Amazon
Description: A case of mistaken identity lead to a murder mystery involving a P.I., an actor, and a thief.
Pros: Amazing movie starring both Val Kilmer and Robert Downey Jr. that deserves to be seen by many more people than caught it in theatres.
Cons: The DVD is a little weaker than I'd like, but still worth picking up.

For those who want more more choices with repeating words words
Name: Good Night, and Good Luck - Buy from Amazon
Description: A look at the battle between journalist Edward R. Murrow and Joseph McCarthy.
Pros: Excellent movie that has implicit parallels to day.
Cons: It's political, and you know what that means.

For those in the mood for more Christmas Cheer
Name: It's a Wonderful Life - 60th Anniversary Edition
Description: Frank Capra's classic Christmas tale starring James Stewart.
Pros: The greatest Christmas movie ever.
Cons: Some think it's overrated and corny. ... But they are wrong.

For those who like a little edge to their Christmas Cheer
Name: Scrooged - Buy from Amazon
Description: Bill Murray stars in this modern-day adaptation of Charles Dickens story of redemption.
Pros: It's an underrated film that should get more exposure at this time of year. Also, Carol Kane is perfect as the Ghost of Christmas Present.
Cons: While it starts out edgy, it has a very, very, ... very, very, very sentimental ending. Also, it's due for a Special Edition DVD, but that probably won't come will 2008 for its 20th anniversary.

For those who are simply sick and tired of Christmas Cheer
Name: Bad Santa - Buy from Amazon: Bad Santa, Badder Santa, or Director's Cut
Description: Billy Bob Thornton stars as a drunken mall Santa who, along with his partner uses his gig to plan heists.
Pros: There are not many movies better at cleansing the pallet after hearing Jingle Bells for the 30th time in a row.
Cons: There are three versions of the movie on DVD, which is different than three versions of the DVD. Because the movie itself is different, it is a matter of personal choice which is better and there's it a hard choice to decide which one to get.

For those who hate Christmas so much they are actively fighting in the War on Christmas
Name: Black Christmas - Buy from Amazon
Description: The original from 1974 is one of the first Teenage Slasher movies of all time.
Pros: You can open your gifts in the morning, watch it in the afternoon, and then see the remake in the evening.
Cons: While it is a groundbreaking film in the genre setting many of the, fans of the current strain of movies might find it tame.

For those who are unfortunately enough to have a New York Rangers fan in their life
Name: The New York Rangers 1994 Stanley Cup Champions - Buy from Amazon
Description: The New York Rangers vs. The Vancouver Canucks in one of the greatest championship series in NHL history.
Pros: This is, simply put, the greatest sports DVD set ever and contains all seven games from the 1994 Stanley Cup finals. I'm not talking about highlights here; I'm talking about the full games. Name another set that gives you that much real time sports.
Cons: The Rangers suck.

Speaking of Canucks
Name: Strange Brew - Buy from Amazon
Description: An adapation of Shakespeare's MacBeth starring Bob and Doug McKenzie.
Pros: One of the greatest hoser comedies comedies of all time. A classic in a genre I call, "Adventures in Stupidity."
Cons: No one's going to mistake this film for Oscar caliber filmmaking, but it is still worth adding to your DVD collection. While you're at it, grab Great White North as well and listen to 12 Days of Christmas.

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Filed under: World Trade Center, Bad Santa, Good Night, and Good Luck, Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang