The latest beloved film to be nostalgically cashed in happens to be one my favorite holiday classics, A Christmas Story. Morphed into a televised musical and broadcasted live by Fox, A Christmas Story Live! attempts to recreate the magic of the original while establishing itself as its own musically inclined entity.
Upon its release, the musical immediately received negative reactions from audiences, and for good reason.
The film goes through many of the same beats as the original A Christmas Story, yet goes about it in the most elongated and roundabout ways. The runtime clocks in way past two hours, and it expands upon the plot in the most puzzling of ways. Moments from A Christmas Story that were brief and concise are pointlessly blown up into entire plot points. Each scene packaged with a not so catchy song attached to it like a leech.
This unfortunate aspect is only compounded by the addition of Matthew Broderick as the narrator, whose performance I took to be a tad creepy.
I think calling A Christmas Story Live! a tremendous misfire by Fox is a gross understatement. The humor is nonexistent, the cinematography is flat and boring, the songs are no fun, and the whole production is just plain dull.
The set designs are creative and remain faithful to both the original film and era, however the overall low quality of A Christmas Story Live! completely detracts from the few positives of the special.
The truth of the matter is that A Christmas Story Live! is nothing more than a pathetic attempt to cash in on peoples’ nostalgia. It’s overwhelmingly poor reception not only brightens my day, but gives me hope that moviegoers have the willpower to just say no to nostalgic cutting and pasting.
After all, ’tis the season to be jolly.
The Verdict: F