Tuesday, December 13, 2011

It's time again for Cheesy Christmas Movies!

And you thought I'd forget this year, didn't you?

Today's classic is called "Son of the Navy", from 1940. I posted this one back in 2007, but it's worth a second look.

"Son of the Navy" is one of those movies where Christmas isn't the primary theme, but does provide an excuse for some sentimentality that you couldn't get away with any other time. Consider the plot: young Tommy runs away from an orphanage to find himself a set f parents of his very own. First he bamboozles a sailor (Mike, played by James Dunn) into posing as his father, and Mike goes along with it so he can hitch a ride back to his ship. The two of them are picked up by a beautiful young woman (Jean Parker, as Stevie) and after Mike ships out, the boy keeps up the pretense. In Hollywood fashion, the woman turns out to be a naval officer's daughter, and she's furious that Mike would leave his son behind while he's at sea. Now, I ask you: would you buy that plot even in a B movie?

Of course not, not if it was, say, August or March. But this takes place in December, and Tommy wants a family for Christmas. Mike's shipmates are initially furious with him for abandoning Tommy, but once that's resolved they form themselves up into a squadron of uncles. It's all very family-heavy, and at Christmas, you can get away with a lot of family content.

It helps that there are some solid if underrated actors in this. I cannot fathom why Jean Parker never made it into the big-budget films. James Dunn isn't brilliant, but he's competent. And Martin Spellman, who plays Tommy, is several notches more believable than most of the child actors of his time. (Mr. Spellman is alive and well in California, it appears. One of these days I'd like to call him and see if I can get his thoughts on this film.)

As always, if you watch this, leave me a comment and tell me what you thought.

Oh, for the love of God heaven absolutely nothing!

Apparently all that peace on earth and goodwill toward men is just too much for the professional dogs-in-the-manger to stomach:
For the past 57 years, the churches erected 14 displays along the length of Ocean Avenue depicting scenes from the nativity story about the birth of Jesus Christ using life-size figures.

In all that time, the churches have had little to no competition for the total 21 spaces available for displays, because only three regular applicants took up approximately 16 spaces.

Not this year.

For the first time in the history of the winter holiday displays 13 individuals entered the race for the 21 spaces rather than the usual three, forcing City Hall to use a random lottery system to allot the spots.

That process left the churches with only two spaces on which they can put up only three of the usual 14 scenes.

A Jewish group received one space for a menorah and two individuals snagged a total of 18 spaces for "solstice greetings." One person can request a maximum of nine spaces.

To date, only two of the solstice spots have been filled, and both with set-ups declaring an aversion to organized religion.

So they're snapping up the spaces for the sole purpose of making sure they can't be used.

These people are basically civic vandals. They not only take no joy in a festive season, but they insist on spray-painting over any beauty that anybody else might enjoy. They demonstrate their superiority by pissing all over our traditions. They spew their hatred over us and then call us haters for being happy in spite of them.

A Puritan has been snidely defined as someone who lies awake worrying that somebody somewhere may be having a good time. Scratch a militant atheist, find a Puritan.

Ex-gay penguins

Who'da thunk?

Of course, this is patently impossible. Everybody knows that homosexuality is permanent and since animals engage in it, it must be healthy and natural. It's time for Buddy and Pedro to undergo some sensitivity training. The little h8rs.

Thursday, December 08, 2011

Immaculate Conception

Mother! whose virgin bosom was uncrost
With the least shade of thought to sin allied;
Woman! above all women glorified,
Our tainted nature’s solitary boast;
Purer than foam on central ocean tost;
Brighter than eastern skies at daybreak strewn
With fancied roses, than the unblemished moon
Before her wane begins on heaven’s blue coast;
Thy Image falls to earth. Yet some, I ween,
Not unforgiven the suppliant knee might bend,
As to a visible Power, in which did blend
All that was mixed and reconciled in Thee
Of mother’s love with maiden purity,
Of high with low, celestial with terrene!

William Wordsworth

I don't think I could post anything better about the Blessed Mother than I did back when this blog was new.