Holiday Spirit: Santa Claus Conquers The Martians (dir by Nicholas Webster)

Watching the 1964 holiday sci-fi epic, Santa Claus Conquers The Martians, is a Christmas Eve tradition here at the Shattered Lens!  So, sit back, turn on Kid TV, and get ready to sing!












Holiday Spirit: A Mom For Christmas (dir by George T. Miller)

In this 1990 made-for-TV movie, a little girl wishes for a mom for Christmas.  So, of course, a mannequin played by Olivia Newton-John comes to life and serves as her mother.  The only catch is that she goes back to being a mannequin on Christmas Eve!  Can Olivia’s new family find a way to make her into a real person or will she go be forced to back to decorating a department store as soon as the holidays end?

Watch to find out!

Holiday Spirit: Santa Claus (dir by Rene Cardona)

Today’s holiday movie is …. well, it’s a little bit odd.

Santa Claus is many things but, for the purposes of this post, Santa Claus is a 1959 Mexican film that reminds us that before he became an advertising icon, Nicholas Claus was a Catholic saint.  According to this film, St. Nick also apparently lives in outer space with a bunch of singing children.  His best friend is Merlin and he apparently gets along with Vulcan, the Roman God of fire, as well.

Perhaps angered by the way that Santa is beloved by children of all races and figures of all mythologies, Lucifer orders a little demon named Pitch to go to Earth and turn the children against Santa.

So yeah, Santa Claus is really weird.  However, if you’ve ever wanted to see a movie where Santa is revealed to be a God-like action hero who holds the fate of the world in his hands, this is the film for you!

Holiday Spirit: An American Christmas Carol (dir by Eric Till)

On Christmas Eve, a miserly businessman is visited by a series of ghosts who help him understand the true meaning of Christmas, along with showing him a frightening vision of a possible future.

And that businessman was named …. Benedict Slade!

Yeah, the name’s have been changed and the action has been updated to Depression-era New England but this is basically the story of Scrooge.  Henry Winkler stars as the Scrooge character in the 1979 made-for-TV movie.  His old age make-up was done by none other than Rick Baker!

Holiday Spirit: Beyond Tomorrow (dir by A. Edward Sutherland)

After three eccentric businessman arrange for a young couple to get together right before the holidays, a plane crash kills the three men.  However, their ghosts remain on Earth to watch over the couple and to take care of some unexpected holiday business.  The film is a holiday film and a comedy and a romance and a musical and a ghost story and a melodrama and finally an oddly sincere meditation on life and death.

From 1940, here’s Beyond Tomorrow!

Holiday Spirit: Santa And The Ice Cream Bunny (dir by Richard Winer)

The year is 1972 and Santa Claus’s magic sleigh is somehow stuck on a beach in Florida!  Can the children help Santa free his sleigh?  If not, he’s going to force them to listen to another fairy tale!  Fortunately, the Ice Cream Bunny is always willing to help …. eventually.

Patrick says this is the worst holiday movie ever made.  Watch it and see if you agree!

Holiday Spirit: The Greatest Store In The World (dir by Jane Prowse)

Here to help you get in the holiday spirit, we’ve got a British film from 1999!

The Greatest Store In The World tells the story of a single mother and her two daughters.  When the film begins, they’re living in a van but, after the van catches on fire, they upgrade things by moving into a luxurious London department store.  Along with coming together as a family and celebrating the holidays, they also thwart an attempt to rob the store.  It’s a good-natured little movie, one that reminds the viewer of how fun the world could be before the rise of COVID-fueled authoritarianism.  It was filmed in Harrods, though the name itself is not actually uttered in the film.  Fans of Doctor Who will want to keep an eye out for Peter Capaldi while fans of larger-than-life actors will be happy to see the great Brian Blessed.

(I should admit that, when I was little and my family was constantly moving from one state to another and I was always having to say goodbye to whatever new friends I had made, I used to fantasize about living in a big mall.  Perhaps that’s one reason why this sweet-natured film brought a tear to my mismatched eyes.)