Christmas Greetings from the Left Pole
You might get the impression from some ads for about-to-be-released movies that
Take Sweeney Todd for example. The ads proclaim twice the producers' glad tidings that the film will be released “in time for Christmas.” Who doesn't want to celebrate the birth of the Prince of Peace with a musical heart warmer rated “R for graphic bloody violence”? Here's the summary:
The story of Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street is of a wrongfully imprisoned barber in Victorian England who sets out to seek revenge on the judge who imprisoned him. The plot is foreshadowed in the first lines of the opening number: “Attend the tale of Sweeney Todd. His skin was pale and his eye was odd. He shaved the faces of gentlemen who never thereafter were heard of again.”
If that doesn't conjure up visions of sugar plums, you probably won't feel mercy mild from this one either: “Nothing says Merry Christmas like a juicy meat pie. Johnny Depp sings in this screen adaptation of Stephen Sondheim's bloody musical.”
Even the ghost of Christmas past would think that Sweeney sounds more suited for release on Bastille Day.
If you really believe that
Then there's this release on Christmas Day. In Charlie Wilson's War, the anti-war armada is celebrating “the true story” of a “covert war” and a “deep sense of patriotism.” Like the promo says, “We couldn't make this up”:
Charlie Wilson's War is the true story of how a playboy congressman, a renegade CIA agent and a beautiful
Charlie Wilson (Tom Hanks) was a bachelor congressman from
Charlie's longtime friend and patron and sometime lover was Joanne Herring (Julia Roberts), one of the wealthiest women in
Charlie's partner in this uphill endeavor is CIA Agent Gust Avrakotos (Philip Seymour Hoffman), a blue-collar operative in a company of Ivy League blue bloods. Together, the three of them—Charlie, Joanne and Gust—travel the world to form unlikely alliances among the Pakistanis, Israelis, Egyptians, arms dealers, law makers and a belly dancer.
Their success was remarkable. Funding for covert operations against the Soviets went from $5 million to $1 billion annually.
It's a Christmas miracle, Charlie Brown! This is from the folks who are still grinched about covert funding of the Contras in
Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus, and it was
Did I mention? They're just in time for “Christmas.”