The James Proclaims Advent Calendar of Christmas(ish) Films – Door 16

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Door 16 of The James Proclaims Advent Calendar Of Christmas(ish) films brings us a movie that is, in many ways, a certified comedy classic. It’s also something of a conundrum.

1983’s Trading Places has, in Eddie Murphy and Dan Aykroyd, two of eighties cinema’s finest comedic talents at the top of their game.  On paper, there’s nothing not to love about it.

Except,of course, that there is plenty not to love…

Because, although the film is definitely holding up a mirror to racism, snobbery and the sense of entitlement of the privileged few, there are many moments when it perpetuates racial stereotypes in spite of its obvious good intentions.

And quite why there is so much gratuitous female nudity is anyone’s guess – none of it feels particularly pertinent to the plot (obviously teenage me would have disagreed profoundly with current me on that point…)

And for a film that is trying so hard to point out racial ignorance, it absolutely beggars belief that, towards the denouement of the movie, Dan Aykroyd ‘blacks up’. I have no idea how this was viewed in 1983, but in 2017 it’s pretty shocking to see.

Trading Places is a lot bleaker in tone than it first appears. It initially seems like it’s going to be a fairly light-hearted affair, yet one of the main characters attempts suicide. Twice.

And there’s the bit, around the same time as Aykroyd’s misjudged Jamaican caricature, that we see a man (a chameo by James Belushi, otherwise known as ‘the lesser Belushi’) dressed as a gorilla in a fancy dress party and a real gorilla (at least ‘real’ within the context of the plot, although it’s clearly also a man in a gorilla suit, albeit a gorilla suit that is marginally superior to the ‘fancy dress’ gorilla suit). And you kind of know where it’s going. There a real gorilla and a man dressed like a gorilla. Classic movie mistaken identity is going to happen, resulting in much hilarity.

Except it doesn’t really pan out that way. Instead, one of the principal bad guys is forced into Belushi’s gorilla costume and locked in the cage with the ‘real’ (and strangely amorous) gorilla and, well, things take a very dark turn. I mean he is definitely a bad guy, but still, his punishment does seem disproportionately horrific. And there’s no real resolution for that character. As far as we can tell, he is doomed to spend the rest of his days receiving the unwanted sexual advances of a primate.

And there’s no escaping the fact that Jamie-Leigh Curtis’ ‘Ophelia’ is a two dimensional cliched character. Curtis does an amazingly good job in fairness to her, but, as the only female character of note in the entire film, she could’ve been given a bit more to work with.

In spite of all it’s failings (and not all of them can be blamed on the fact it was made in 1983) Trading Places is a hugely entertaining film. When it gets things right, as, to be fair, it does for much of the running time, it is truly hilarious.

It’s just that when it gets it wrong it can leave you feeling more than a little uncomfortable.

I do really like Trading Places but I’m not always sure that I should like it.

Score For Christmasishness


The narrative of the film seems to run from just before Thanksgiving, to New Year’s Day, definitely covering the Christmas period. There are clear visible signs throughout the movie that it is Christmas time. Towards the end of the ‘second act’ Dan Aykroyd is dressed as down-at-heel Santa Claus (who rather implausibly seems to have gatecrashed a party full of executives without anyone noticing).

It’s not a true Christmas film, it would work perfectly well as a story if set at another time of year, but Christmas time does seem like a reasonable backdrop for this particular narrative and the film is probably stronger for the festive theme.

I could understand why someone might include this amongst their festive favourites.



The James Proclaims Advent Calendar of Christmas(ish) Films – Door 15

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It’s time for door 15 of The James Proclaims Advent Calendar Of Christmas(ish) FIlms and what better place to start the weekend than In Bruges?

After all “it’s a fairytale town isn’t it?”

Hitmen Ray and Ken (Colin Farrell and Brendan Gleeson respectively) find themselves hiding out there at the behest of  mob boss Harry (Ralph Fiennes) after a job goes horribly and tragically wrong.

And the two couldn’t be more polarized in their views of the Belgian town.

While Ken is content to sightsee and soak in the history and culture, Ray is perplexed by the notion of “going round in a boat looking at things” and thinks that “history is all just a load of stuff that’s already happened,” and therefore not worth his time. Indeed Ray would rather be anywhere but In Bruges.

The film is darkly comic in tone and the characters, while all fundamentally flawed (and racist and homophobic and generally offensive in all kinds of ways) are amazingly still sympathetic. Farrell and Gleeson work well together on screen, and though partners in crime on paper, Ken is very much the patient paternal figure, with Ray fulfilling the role of petulant teenage son.

The dynamic between the two central characters during the first quarter of the film, is for me, the most entertaining aspect of the whole movie, albeit, it’s probably when the least ‘stuff’ happens. As more characters are introduced and the narrative develops, the film remains engaging, but never quite lives up to its earliest scenes.

At its most basic interpretation, In Bruges is an absorbing comic crime caper but on a more profound level, it raises plenty of questions about morality and mortality. I’m not sure it particularly answers any of those questions but, equally, I’m not sure that’s the point.

What can’t be denied is that Bruges itself looks like a lovely place to visit.

Although I’m not sure Ray is ever fully convinced of that fact.

Score for Christmasishness


It’s definitely set at Christmas time and Bruges is certainly a fitting backdrop for a Christmas-themed movie.

That said, there’s nothing particularly Christmas(ish) about the plot in reality, but the Christmas setting does add a level of poignancy to the whole story which, or reflection, seems wholly appropriate.

So it’s reasonably Christmas(ish).

The James Proclaims Advent Calendar of Christmas(ish) Films – Door 14

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By the time 2002’s Die Another Day hit our screens, signalling the decline of a certain British spy with the initials JB (or at least Pierce Brosnan’s portrayal of him), we had already been introduced to an American undercover agent with the same initials and the heralding of a new kind of action film

The operative in question was called Bourne.

Jason Bourne.

Although he was also known as John Michael Kane.

And in fact, as we would discover in a later movie, his real name was David Webb.

But we knew him as Jason Bourne.

Although, for a while in the inaugural film, he didn’t know any of his names.

Because he had amnesia.

Which was quite an important plot point.

There’s no doubting the impact that the Bourne franchise had on the genre.

By the time the next Bond film rolled around, Brosnan was gone to be replaced by Daniel Craig, and gone too were the inanities of invisible cars, ethnicity-altering surgery and bad guys called Mr Kill. Instead 2006’s Casino Royale is a stripped back affair with a harder, colder Bond and a greater focus on the plot making actual sense. It’s arguably the best of all the Bond films (though I still prefer On Her Majesty’s Secret Service despite all its plot holes and George Lazenbyness) and owes much to the Bourne series.

There are now five Bourne films in existence (if we count 2012’s The Bourne Legacy and ignore the 1988 made-for-TV version of The Bourne Identity and we probably should do both of those things). 2007’s The Bourne Ultimatum is often viewed as the ‘pick’ of the bunch and it rightfully has its plaudits.

Overall though, I still have a preference for the film that kicked the whole franchise off, 2002’s The Bourne Identity. It may be because the bulk of that film is set in Paris and I found myself living in that fair city shortly after the film’s release.

But I think it’s more because, however great some of the sequels are, it’s Identity which introduces us to the world of the absent-minded assassin and sets the tone for the later movies.

Also, whereas the others tend to invite a time-hungry binge of Bourne (I often find that when I watch one I suddenly need to watch the rest immediately) Identity is its own self-contained story. I certainly had no objections when Supremacy came out in 2004, but had there never been another Bourne film made, Identity would still be a complete narrative in and of itself. We didn’t need a sequel, however much we might have wanted one, (although the studio, in clear contradiction of Mick Jagger’s wisdom, did give us what we wanted over what we needed).

In any case it is The Bourne Identity which is hiding in plain site behind door number 14 of The James Proclaims Advent Calendar of CHristmas(ish) Films.

Matt Damon absolutely owns the role of Bourne, but there are topnotch performances all around, particularly from Chris Cooper as the troubled Alexander Conklin. Franka Portente is also excellent as Bourne’s fellow fugitive and subsequent love interest.

So good is The Bourne Identity that it inspired me to read the original Robert Ludlum books.

They mostly have very little in common with the movies but they pass the time if you have nothing better to do.

But the films are much better.

And The Bourne Identity, in particular, is always worth a watch.

Score For Christmasishness


I must have seen The Bourne Identity countless times. But it wasn’t until I started my Christmas(ish) films Advent calendar that it occurred to me that one might consider it a Christmas Film.

Because it isn’t really a Christmas Film.

But it does appear to be set around Christmas time judging by the festive decorations on display throughout the movie.

Like many other aspects of the movie, the Christmas theme is understated.

Which makes it a very ‘Bourne’ Christmas when you think about it.

So while it’s not the most Christmas(ish) of all the movies to feature in The James Proclaims Advent Calendar of Christmas(ish) films, it’s certainly not the least..


The James Proclaims Advent Calendar of Christmas(ish) Films – Door 13

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Welcome back to The James Proclaims Advent Calendar of Christmas(ish) films. Today we must tread with caution as creeping out from behind door 13 are several seemingly cute and harmless furry creatures. But feed them after midnight they become a lot less cute.

They become Gremlins.

Gremlins is a veritable 80s classic. I loved it as a child, although I also found it terrifying. It’s quite scary if you’re a kid. It’s less scary if you’re an adult, although I still wouldn’t want to meet an actual gremlin.

It’s also a lot of fun – it’s definitely a comedy, albeit often in the darkest of ways. Mean as the Gremlins themselves are, there are plenty of human driven moments of darkness, from the Scrooge/Mr Potter inspired Mrs Deagle to the vicar who quite happily sells out his neighbour to a Gremlin-infested mailbox.

Zach Galligan and Phoebe Cates capably manage the juxtaposition between comedy and horror, but the real stars of the show are the Gremlins themselves. Even the eighties special effects don’t diminish the ‘fear-factor’ they bring to the screen but some of the films biggest laugh-out loud moments are also Gremlin -inspired.

Thirty-three and a half years after its release, Gremlins still feels fresh and different to anything else out there.

Every time I watch it, I find new things to love about it.

Score For Christmasishness


Gremlins doesn’t really need to be set at Christmas and it was originally released in June so the intent was perhaps not for it to be considered a Christmas movie.

But it really is. The action takes place on Christmas Eve so there’s no escaping the festive feel of the film, but more than that, there are clear references to Christmas classics such as It’s A Wonderful Life, with that film’s ‘Bedford Falls’ a clear inspiration for Gremlins’  ‘Kingston Falls’. Main character Billy even works in a bank that is not dissimilar to ‘Baily Building  and Loans’.

Later in the film Kate’s tragic tale of her father’s demise is a tragic tale of Christmas calamity.

In many ways Gremlins is a ‘send-up’ of more familiar festive fare, but seasonal satire or not, the film still feels very Christmas(ish) indeed.

Although the Gremlin carol singers that appear in one particularly memorable scene don’t seem quite as full of good cheer as one might hope….


The James Proclaims Advent Calendar of Christmas(ish) Films – Door 12

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12 days into December and as luck would have it, we happen upon door 12 of The James Proclaims Advent Calendar Of Christmas(ish) Films. And it’s about time that a namesake of mine turned up

His name’s Bond.

James Bond.

There have been 24 official Bond films made (and a few unofficial ones too), and, as far as I’m aware, only one has any element of Christmas in it (if we ignore the insanely named Dr Christmas Jones from  1999s The World Is Not Enough). I’m happy to stand corrected – there are enough Bond films to merit an Advent Calendar of their very own and even though I’ve seen them all, I’m not about to re-watch them all again just to establish their respective Christmasishness.

But I know, from memory, that one of them is fairly Christmassy.

And that one is 1969’s On Her Majesty’s Secret Service.

Everyone has their own favourite Bond. Connery, Moore, Dalton, Brosnan and Craig all have their advocates.

Few, however, would champion the cause of George Lazenby.

And for very good reason.

He is, easily, the weakest of all the Bonds.

There are many moments in On Her Majesty’s Secret Service when Lazenby’s performance is shaky and uncertain. The rest of his performance is much worse than that.

As the first person to take the role on the big screen other than Connery, Lazenby had big shoes to fill and, metaphorically speaking, tiny feet.

Somehow though, the worst of all the Bonds is in arguably the best of all the Bond films.

On Her Majesty’s Secret Service is absolutely brilliant in spite of its leading man.

There are plenty of ridiculous infuriating moments that threaten to derail the whole thing. There’s the weird ‘reveal’ of the new Bond in the opening sequence, during which Lazenby breaks the fourth wall, after his car is stolen, and whines that “this never happened to the other fella’.

There’s also the ridiculous dubbing of another actor’s voice over Lazenby when Bond  goes undercover, because apparently Lazenby couldn’t ‘do a different voice’.

The story too, is reasonably hard to follow and really, if properly scrutinised, doesn’t make all that much sense.

But Telly Savalas and Ilse Steppat make for compelling bad guys as Ernst Stavros Blofeld and Irma Bunt respectively.

And to be fair to Lazenby, he does the action sequences pretty well.

The score too, is exceptional. Of course there is the usual Bond theme music and that is all well and good, but significant elements of the film are underpinned by Louis Armstrong’s We Have All The Time In The World. It doesn’t sound like it should be on a Bond soundtrack, but it works for this film.

The thing that makes this the most compelling of the Bond films though, is strangely enough the least ‘Bondish’ element.

Which is the love story.

And more pertinently, who he falls in love with.

Diana Rigg’s ‘Tracy di Vincenzo’ is quite probably the best ‘Bond girl’ ever, precisely because she is nothing like the archetypal Bond girl. She is a fully formed character, with a melancholic air underpinning her performance. That Bond would ever fall in love might normally stretch credibility, that he would fall in love with Tracy seems beyond any doubt from the moment we meet her.

Rigg is not actually on screen for a large percentage of the film but she personifies everything that is good about it and elevates it far above being ‘just another Bond film’.

If you’ve seen On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, you’ll know the ending is bleak, much darker than is usual for the franchise.

Still, it is in the final scene that Lazenby earns forgiveness for all that has gone before in terms of his own performance. I defy anyone to watch him deliver his closing lines without welling up at least a bit.

Score for Christmasishness


The first hints of Christmas occur around 45 mins into the film when Bond arrives in the snow-covered alps. Snow, in itself, is not a sufficient determiner of Christmasishness, or clearly many more Bond films would join the list, but Christmasishness is confirmed about an hour in, when Bond, in the guise of ‘Sir Hilary Bray’ while residing in Blofeld’s ‘allergy clinic’ is invited to spend Christmas there. We see our first Christmas decoration at 1 hour 15 and when Bond’s secret identity is uncovered by Blofeld  a few moments later, we see a  large Christmas tree. Christmas presents even form an integral part of Blofeld’s masterplan (a masterplan as preposterous as the best of the Bond franchise).

We hear Christmas music in the background as two henchmen are sent tumbling over a cliff to their brutal and untimely (but still very festive) deaths.

There’s a very much a Christmas carnival air about the alpine town that Bond hides out in on escaping Blofeld’s clutches – indeed it’s rather reminiscent of a those German Christmas markets that pop in all the major towns and cities at this time of year.

In all just under half the events of the film appear to be set at Christmas time and much of the major action takes place against a snow covered backdrop. Definitely a Christmas(ish) film in my book.

The James Proclaims Advent Calendar of Christmas(ish) Films – Door 11

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It’s day 11 of the James Proclaims Advent Calendar Of Christmas(ish) films and it’s time to be done, once and for all, with Shane Black.

Don’t get me wrong, the man is pretty much peerless when it comes to making films that are are ‘not-really-Christmas-films-but-a-bit-Christmassy-nonetheless’.

But if he’s going to include a Christmas element in all of his films then the novelty is going wear off eventually.

To be fair, not every film he’s ever had a writing or directing credit for has featured in this advent calendar of Christmasishness but he has managed to get six (including today’s effort) on the list, which is a whopping 25% of the total.

Which is a lot.

Nonetheless, it has to be acknowledged that, with the possible exception of The Last Boy Scout (which might be an awful film but one I’m still relatively fond of) they have all been pretty good.

And today’s entry into the festive filmography is also a goodun’

For it is 2016’s The Nice Guys.

Starring Russell Crowe and Ryan Gosling, it is familiar Shane Black territory, insofar as an unlikely duo team up to solve crime and take on the bad guys. In this case it’s muscle-for-hire Jackson Healy (Crowe) and alcoholic PI Holland March (Gosling). Throw in March’s teenage daughter, Holly (who sounds like she should be an irritating character but is surprisingly not) and you have an improbable team of sleuths working to solve a conspiracy, which, boringly, seems to be related to the automobile industry. The ‘hows’ and ‘whys’ of the subterfuge are really not important though, it’s the set pieces that make the film, and it’s full of action and comedy in equal measure.

You won’t find too much originality here, but the cast all put in strong performances, and the 1977 setting works well to set the movie apart from similar fare.

Ultimately it’s a familiar ride, but no less fun for that fact.

Score For Christmasishness


Although Shane Black enjoys a Christmas setting, this is one of his least Christmassy efforts. Basically, it isn’t a Christmas film, but in the final scene, once all the action has taken place, all the loose ends are finally tied up and we’re fundamentally just ‘saying goodbye’ to the characters, our heroes meet up in a bar, and it’s clear from the decorations all around them, that it is, at this point in their timeline, nearly Christmas.

Which is a fact that adds nothing to the film whatsoever.


The James Proclaims Advent Calendar of Christmas(ish) Films – Door 10

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Day 10 of the James Proclaims Advent Calendar Of Christmas(ish) films brings us The Ice Harvest.

Starring John Cusack, Billy Bob Thornton and Connie Nielsen, and directed by Harold Ramis, it’s a Christmas-themed comic crime caper, with twists and turns galore.

Or so it first appears.

On paper it looks like it could be an absolute riot.

And it’s not bad.

But it’s not as good as it probably should be.

Harold Ramis was an actual Ghostbuster, lest we forget, and also the man who brought us Groundhog Day. The Ice Harvest  doesn’t quite meet the expectations you might have based on that pedigree.

The twists seem largely predictable. The jokes don’t always land as well as they should, and while the performances of the cast are all fine, no-one shines. Thornton is probably the standout performer – the understated menace  of his character ‘Vic’ is something of a precursor to his later work as ‘Lorne Malvo’ in season 1 of the outstanding Fargo, but, even for a film as short as this, he is probably underused.

The Ice Harvest is an easy film to like but a little harder to love.

I’d probably watch it again though.

Score For Christmasishness


The action is entirely set on Christmas Eve and, at the start of the film it’s  Christmasishness is very much in the foreground. Festive music, a man dressed as Santa and Christmas trees are all present.

As are Christmas presents.

There are numerous scenes throughout the movie that remind us of the season and, if not central to the plot, Christmas certainly doesn’t feel irrelevant to the larger story.

You probably could set this movie at a different time of year, but actually, it’s likely to be the Christmas theme which serves as the basis for repeat viewings, and it’s that which might elevate what initially seems like a  forgettable film into something a touch more memorable.




The James Proclaims Advent Calendar of Christmas(ish) Films – Door 9

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Here we are at door 9 of the James Proclaims Advent Calendar Of Christmas(ish) films, and it’s about time Bruce Willis popped up.

Yes it’s no other than the most Christmas(ish) of all the action films….

The Last Boy Scout

Sorry, were you expecting something else?

Is there a more Christmas(ish) Bruce Willis flick than The Last Boy Scout?

Well, possibly. And maybe that one (and perhaps its sequel) could yet appear in this unrivalled compendium of merry movies.

But The Last Boy Scout is a great film in its own right.

Well it’s a good film.

Goodish anyway.

Ok it’s really quite bad.

But it was written by Shane Black who, lest we forget, is responsible for whole heap of actually quite good Christmas(ish) films previously featured in this feature.

So we can forgive him one bad one.

Especially as, if rumours are to be believed, his original script was supposedly quite good and was subsequently ruined by numerous studio-enforced rewrites.

If I’m honest, I do still quite enjoy The Last Boy Scout.

None of it makes even the tiniest bit of sense. The dialogue is clearly meant to be full of witty sarcasm but is instead often stilted and generally out of context with the narrative. Quite a lot of people die for what seems like no good reason.

A central plot point is the potential legalisation of ‘sports gambling’.

Which is not the most exciting premise for a film.

It’s certainly not a great reason to go around shooting people.

Is ‘sports gambling’ even illegal?

If so, then my annual punt on The Grand National is now starting to worry me.

Nonetheless, the film moves along quite quickly, and if you’ve had a bit too much ‘festive cheer’, the incoherent plot probably won’t bother you too much. It might even make more sense if you watch it when a little inebriated.

Score for Christmasishness


There’s a reference to the fact that the holiday season is imminent when Willis’ character, Joe Hallenbeck, comes across a drawing his daughter has recently produced of a demonic figure wearing a Santa Claus costume and holding a decapitated head. The title of the drawing is ‘Satan Claus’.

And that’s it.

Other than a callback to Satan Claus at the end of the film, there are literally no other references to Christmas.

This film has no business being in a list of Christmas films.

Yet, a cursory internet search reveals that it often is in such lists.  Probably because of the Shane Black connection.

But really, there is no good reason to watch this film at Christmas.

Then again, there is no good reason to watch this film at all.


The James Proclaims Advent Calendar of Christmas(ish) Films – Door 8

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Hello and welcome to day 8 of The James Proclaims Advent Calendar Of Christmas(ish) films.

And door 8 invites us to cast our memories back to 1996, to a film in which Geena Davies has lost her memories – for our film today is none other than The Long Kiss Goodnight.

And wouldn’t you know it, it’s another Christmas(ish) action flick written by Shane Black.

Six years before amnesiac spies were all the rage thanks to Jason Bourne (I know that technically 2002’s The Bourne Identity was based on a 1980 novel of the same name and that there was also a 1988 film adaptation of the same novel but no-one much cared about Jason Bourne before the Matt Damon movie), Samantha Caine AKA Charly Baltimore was already running around not remembering stuff and being really good at fighting people. Davies convinces as both the perplexed school teacher with no memory, who can’t understand why people keep trying to kill her (or indeed how she manages to keep kicking their asses) and equally as the cold-blooded assassin she becomes once her memory is restored. They are such divergent identities that at times it’s hard enough to believe that they are the same character, let alone that they are being played by the same actor. That she then manages to find a convincing ‘happy medium’ between the two personalities at the film’s conclusion is all the more impressive.

Helping her out in her adventures, Samual L. Jackson has tremendous fun as the sharply dressed, morally-flawed-but-well-intentioned private detective who ends up very much out of his depth for most of the action.

It’s ludicrous stuff but lots of fun. A particular highlight is the world weary agent/mentor played by the ever-brilliant Brian Cox. He doesn’t have much to do, but manages to cram a lot of memorable one-liners in his brief time on screen, all delivered with an acerbic, sardonic wit.

If over-the-top action and border-line pantomime villains is your thing then you could definitely do much worse that The Long Kiss Goodnight. It’s nonsense but it’s thoroughly entertaining nonsense.

Score For Christmasishness


There are Christmas credentials aplenty in this film. No less than two Christmas Parades occur, one towards the beginning, and one during the action-packed denouement.

There is plenty of snow, and there’s even a reindeer, albeit the reindeer is mortally wounded in a road traffic accident, an accident that also sees the demise of the Santa Claus from the opening Christmas Parade scene. True, he’s not in his outfit when the accident occurs, and he is very much inebriated, but he is still the only version of Father Christmas to feature in the film.

The Christmas theme is helped further by the fact that the climax of the film is on Christmas Eve, so the objective of ‘saving the world’ (or in this case the lives of four thousand innocent people) runs in parallel with the notion of ‘saving Christmas’. That our heroine creatively uses Christmas lights to finally topple the bad guy is worthy of extra points.

Really the film could work just as well if set at any time of the year, but it does make the most of the Christmasishness available to it, which means, for the sake of this series, it scores highly.


The James Proclaims Advent Calendar of Christmas(ish) Films – Door 7

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Behind door 7 of The James Proclaims Advent Calendar of Christmas(ish) Films we find the neo-noir crime masterpiece that is LA Confidential.

Released in 1997, it’s hard to believe this movie is twenty years old. There’s a genuinely timeless air about it, perhaps partially because of the 1950s setting, but more so because of a smart script, strong performances from an ensemble cast including Kim Basinger, Danny DeVito and James Cromwell, and a pacing that is fast enough to keep you engaged but never so fast that the dense plot becomes overwhelming.

The twists, when they come, are genuinely surprising, but the plot doesn’t overly rely on them and the film bears up to multiple repeat viewings.

Of the three leads, Kevin Spacey is given top billing, but, although his performance is excellent, we can (thankfully given recent events) skip past him because the (then relatively unknown) Australian duo of Russell Crowe and Guy Pearce (the latter, at the time, better known to most people as Mike from the almost inexplicably popular soap opera Neighbours – a tag he has thankfully managed to convincingly shake off since) are the stand-out performers.

LA Confidential blew me away in 1997 and to this day remains one of my favourite film of any genre..

Score for Christmasishness


It may surprise people to see LA Confidential in a list of CHristmas films, indeed I’d forgotten that there was anything Christmasish about it, but in preparation for this ‘Advent Calendar’ I did a bit of research into ‘films that are surprisingly Christmassy’. LA Confidential was on more than one list. It shouldn’t have been. It’s isn’t really all that Christmassy. The preliminary events of the film are set at Christmas, culminating in a pivotal scene of police brutality, which is subsequently dubbed ‘Bloody Christmas’. Then Christmas doesn’t feature again.

At all.

So it’s not a Christmas film, but it is still a really good film and probably a better use of your time than watching Reindeer Games if truth be told.