There are few things funnier in this world than Arnold Schwarzenegger’s acting skills. I’m not even weighing-in on whether or not world class body builders should become actors, but I am weighing in on letting a world class body builder with an extreme Austrian accent play roles ranging from horrifying killing machine,The Terminator to sentimental Dead Beat Dad at Christmastime.
Prior to becoming The Governator of California, Ahhhnold used to star in all kinds of offbeat movies. My personal favorite is Kindergarten Cop (“IT’S NOT A TUMOR!”), in which Arnold plays John Kimble, a rough and tumble cop undercover as a kindergarten teacher. While this role was endlessly hilarious for all the wrong reasons, he truly became a family film star with his role in Jingle All The Way.
Jingle All The Way is the tale of a too-busy-to-be-chill dad during the holidays. His son, Jamie, has two simple requests: that his dad go to the town’s annual Christmas parade with the family, and that he get a Turboman doll under the tree. Unfortunately, those requests become impossible to fulfill thanks to Turboman being the hottest toy on the market since My Little Pony.
That’s it. Pretty basic premise, right? While included in the 25 Days of Christmas on ABC Family, it is still often overlooked when discussing great Christmas films. And why should it be? How can you not love:
- A made up superhero doll, Turbo Man
- The disdain with which people refer to Booster, the crappier sidekick toy
- Drunk reindeer
Arnold saying, “PUT THE COOKIE DOWN!” which I wish was my text tone.
This movie is entirely absurd, probably even more so than the Home Alone movies (related: why did they keep making these after the first two? They were perfect), and inspire just the right amount of Christmas cheer for early December when you aren’t yet ready to go full-yuletide at the Whobilation.
This film is mostly overlooked because it came out in a golden era of Christmas films. The Santa Clause, the Miracle on 34th Street reboot, Jack Frost and The Nightmare Before Christmas – all became modern classics in the ’90s. There simply wasn’t room for Arnold and Sinbad to do too much damage at the box office and otherwise, but maybe it will find success in its current stint on Netflix instant.
Look, this film has heart! I mean, I think we only have to see Arnold without his shirt once, and the way he says, “Jamie” in his accenty baritone genuinely feels like he cares for his kiddo.
It’s also a film that doesn’t take itself too seriously, which is ideal when you’re thinking about spiking your hot cocoa. As much as I adore Jim Carrey’s How the Grinch Stole Christmas, I have to fast-forward through the part where prepubescent Cindy Lou Who sings longingly out the window…
What are your favorite Christmas movies, and which ones do you think get snubbed too much? Let me know!
Image courtesy of 80slove.tumblr.com