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Carl the Critic: Reviews "Kirk Cameron's Saving Christmas"
"Kirk Cameron's Saving Christmas"
"Kirk Cameron's Saving Christmas" Trailer
I have respect for people of all faiths, or ideologies. I believe as long as what you believe helps you to be a better person or is used to help other people over come difficult times, that is great. I do have a problem with people who just use their religion, knowing there are many others who believe it as well, as an excuse to make a prophet, especially when it goes against said religion. People who say things like "Hey You! If you are a TRUE believer, you should send me money or else you'll go to hell!" Kirk Cameron is one such person, and the evidence of this all seen in his "magnum opus", "Kirk Cameron's Saving Christmas".
This was a film I saw because I heard horrible things about it. Apparently it has a 0% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, and when Kirk Cameron tried to urge his followers on Facebook and Twitter to "Help me storm the gates of Rotten Tomatoes", this resulted in shooting himself in the foot, because as it turns out, many of his followers didn't like the film either. I was curious as to how horrible it really was. After watching it, I can safely say that this is by far the WORST CHRISTMAS MOVIE EVER MADE IN THE HISTORY OF BAD CHRISTMAS MOVIES! It completely ignores facts about the history of the holiday season, Christmas trees, Christmas presents, and offers the worst excuse for the over commercialization of Christmas EVER!
"Oh really?" you might say, "why is this so bad?" Well let's talk about it.
Kirk Cameron plays Kirk Cameron in "Kirk Cameron's Saving Christmas", who explains why he loves everything about Christmas (especially his "hot chocolate"). He also explains that there are usually three kinds of people: The good Christian people who say "Merry Christmas" the way Jesus did, The non-Christian who would rather say "Happy Holidays", or "Seasons Greetings" because they are trying to kill Christmas, and there are the bad Christians who say that Christmas is bad because all of the holiday imagery isn't Christian.
Any way he's throwing his annual Christmas party hullabalooza when his wife's brother, Christian (get it? Because Christian is a Christian. I needed to explain this because it's just so subtle) is being a real stick in the mud because he is one of the "bad Christians" mentioned earlier. And the movies plot is just basically Kirk Cameron sitting in Christian's car, trying to convince him that everything we see during Christmas time does in fact relate to Jesus.
He does this by pulling "facts" out of his ass such as connecting Christmas trees to the crucifixion of Jesus, Christmas presents to the skyline of Jerusalem, and St. Nicholas is a psychopath who beats the living snot out of heretics while the sound of babies crying (and I think dying) is heard in the background.
There are many great Biblical inspired Christmas films, and I enjoy a few of them myself (I mention a few in my Top 10 Christmas Movies list which you can see by clicking Here). This is a bad Christmas film, because it completely ignores actual facts and replaces them with half-ass excuses for why so many non Christian things, such as commercialism, are related to Jesus.
According to Kirk, we hang ornaments on a Christmas tree because when Adam and Eve were in the Garden of Eden, they took the forbidden fruit of the Tree of Knowledge. They ate the fruit from the tree of knowledge and thus it was in their body. Jesus has a body, and was crucified on a cross. The cross is made of wood, which comes from trees. So whenever you see a Christmas tree lot, you should a lot of empty crosses.
I'm going to try to explain the reason why Christmas trees are a thing. A long time ago, Germanic pagans use to worship a tree called the Donar's Oak tree. One day an Anglo-Saxon missionary named Winfrid of Wessex (who would later be canonized as Saint Boniface) came along to convert them to the Christian faith and he decided to cut down this Donar's Oak tree, use the wood to build a church, and replaced it with an evergreen tree so that the reformed Pagans have a tree to use as a gateway to Christianity because an evergreen tree is triangular, like the Holy Trinity (in the Christian faith the Holy Trinity is the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit). This was later adopted in the 16th century by Lutheran founder Martin Luther who took it a step further by cutting down an evergreen tree, bringing it to his home and adding candles to it. It is true that the candles on the tree resembled Jesus, but because it was his way of saying "Jesus is the light of the world", not because he died on the cross. There were Medieval "Miracle Plays" that where shown every December 24 that would portray the Adam and Eve story, and theses plays used evergreen trees to symbolize the Tree of Knowledge, and apples and wafers were hung on the tree (apples symbolize the forbidden fruit, while the wafers symbolized the Christian sacrament, the Eucharist) but this was not Jesus related at all (besides the Eurcharist part, but Jesus wasn't really the focus of these plays), and it certainly did not represent Jesus' Crucifixion on the cross. If Kirk Cameron actually did his research on this material, he could've incorporated these facts in the film, but nope, instead we're supposed to see a dead Jesus every time we see a decorated Christmas tree. I'm not even mentioning the Ancient Egyptians, or the Celtics or the Norse who all had similar traditions hundreds to thousands of years before the time of Jesus.
More incorrect information comes at us when we're suppose give gifts during Christmas time, because God gave us Jesus. I would've been fine if Kirk ended the explanation there but he continues to say, Jesus is a material possession, and we give each other presents because it means we are giving each other Jesus. Well okay that is starting to get out there, but yet he's still not done, because not only is Jesus a material possession, but if you stack all of your material possessions, it creates the skyline to Jerusalem. So not only are the presents suppose to be Jesus, who is a material girl in a material world, but we're also suppose to stack Jesus on top of other "Jesuses" to get this:
Again I am going to try to explain how I understand the gift giving tradition. Ancient Romans use to celebrate Saturnalia, a festival to celebrate their god, Saturn. This was celebrated from December 17th until December 23rd, and was celebrated with feasts, banquettes, games, decorated trees (oh hey, look at that, an even older example of Christmas trees), and of course giving gifts to each other. Christians didn't started celebrating Jesus' birthday on December 25th, until around the 4th century, when the Roman Empire finally adopted Christianity as the official religion, and decided since they already had this tradition of celebrating an event in December, they used it as the time to celebrate the day Jesus was born. That's where the tradition of giving gifts actually comes from around Christmas time. Now Kirk could've just used the magi (or wise men) giving baby Jesus the three gifts gold, frankincense (or just incense in some versions), and myrrh, as the explanation for giving gifts on Christmas, but he doesn't. He does mention that that they gave the gifts, but only as a reminder to Mary that Jesus is going to die.
I'm not even going to get into Kirk's description of Saint Nicholas, you're just going to have to take my word for it that it's similar to the Billy Chapman from "Silent Night, Deadly Night". Okay so factual discrepancies aside, and it's complete misunderstanding of Jesus' teachings (it's apparently okay to be greedy and gluttonous), what else is wrong with this movie? Well let's talk about the characters, and the fact that there weren't any. There were people in this movie, but no one was well developed or understood. At best the only thing you knew about anyone was that they were Christian. There was an African American gentleman in the film who was just a stereotype, and whose only purpose was to make the movie 81 minutes long (him and this unnecessary dance/music video that takes up the bulk of the ending of the film). The closest thing to a character in this movie was a conspiracy nut, whose suppose to represent the "crazy people" who believe in the "war on Christmas" (I for one am not in a position to say whether there is a war on Christmas or not, but the film makers seems to think there isn't). Other than that no one can truly be called a character in this film. There was no one to identify with or connect to.
Oh but don't worry cinema snobs the film is also technically bad as well. There were scenes of obvious ADR, where it was clear that the dialogue wasn't being said by the characters at that time, but were added in post. The editing made no sense. The way it would cut from Kirk talking to Christian to the scenes that Kirk was explaining was just spliced in as though the editor just didn't care. The look of the movie was absolute garbage. Some of the scene in the film seemed weird.
As Christian movie it fails because it goes against Jesus' teaching, and shames Christians who do want Christmas to be more about Jesus' birth, rather than some commercialized, materialistic holiday. As a Christmas movie, it fails because it not only points out flaws in how Christmas is celebrated today, but it comes up with outrageous and convoluted excuses for how everything at Christmas time relates to Jesus. There are so many better Christian and Christmas movies, that are emotional, funny, inspirational, and relatable. If Kirk Cameron wanted to make a film that was any of those things, he failed miserably.
I just want to say again, that this film is bad, not because it's a religious film, but because it is misguided, poorly acted, and poorly made. This isn't about Kirk Cameron saving Christmas, as much as it is about him trying to convince his Brother-In-Law why everything at Christmas time is related to Jesus. I wish I could say something good about this film but I can't.
I give "Kirk Cameron Saving Christmas" a 0 out of 10. By far the worst film, of the year!
What About You?
If you've seen "Kirk Cameron's Saving Christmas", what did you think?
© 2014 Carl