Jingle Bells, jingle bells, jingle all the way – insert here your favourite melody!
Christmas week is here and everyone that lives around me knows how much I’m in love with movies from this time of the year (and yes, be them the biggest super productions, Netflix originals, or those undergrounds that starts with two people that never seen each other that get trapped in a city that super celebrates Christmas and one of them loves it while the other hates it and, at the end, they get together – I have a PhD in those – my Lune sisters already gave up on me).
So you must already imagine how much I’m excited in writing this.
To my surprise, and everyone’s that surrounds me, I’m not going to talk about some tacky Christmas movie – not this year at list, just because – I chose to talk about an animation that’s part of my Christmas since I understand myself as a person, and I believe that to many 90’s children as well!
I’m going to give a tip and it’ll be easy to understand what’s it about, here it goes: “Kidnap the Sandy Claws, lock him up real tight, throw away the key and then turn off all the lights”
That’s right, Jacklovers (I’m a full comedian today), the most Christmas-y movie my family thought of making children watch on Christmas night was always Nightmare Before Christmas, and we always liked it a lot.
Without further ado, let’s head to the City of Halloween to meet our favourite skeleton!
Say Hello to Tim Burton
(I have to stop being an emotional fan, Brazil, help me)
Him, the creator of MANY of my favourite titles of all time, created my favourite movie/animation/cartoon/character of Christmas.
Tim Burton is a North American director, producer, screenwriter and illustrator born in 1958; he has a style many would deem even weird, but it’s his trademark – just by looking at it, we know from whose head it came from.
He started his career in 1971 with writing and directing The Island of Doctor Agor and form then on it was success after success.
He carries in his luggage productions like: Frankenweenie (1984), Beetlejuice (1988), Batman (1989), Edward Scisorhands (1990), Planet of the Apes (2001), the second adaptation of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (2005), Corpse Bride (2005), the 2010 version of Alice in Wonderland, Dumbo (2019), among many other incredible titles – including the one I chose as a theme of this post, Nightmare Before Christmas (1993).
What’s This? What’s This? There’s Colour Everywhere
Nightmare Before Christmas is a North American movie directed by Henry Selick. produced and cowritten by Tim Burton, in stop motion style, in 1993. It’s genre is animation, fantasy and musical. It’s a production from Disney studios.
It tells the story of a charismatic skeleton who lives in the lands of Halloween with all the horror characters that might exist, and there they live only of what they know – which are horror things like, frightening, doing evil, killing, fighting, upseting and all things we see in movies and with Halloween theme.
I don’t know if I have an emotional memory from childhood upon watching this movie, but I think the things they do on Halloween lands, even if considered bad or wrong, are so cute, that we can’t even be mad at their citizens (actually of some of the citizens we can).
The City of Halloween is a frem world, with the biggest variety of citizens – like monsters who live under the bed, monsters who live inside closets, deformed monsters, ghosts of all kinds, vampires, werewolves, witches, crazy scientists, skeletons.
Jack Skellington, who is considered Pumpkin King, is also the greatest attraction on annual Halloween celebrations. But all that party and same things of all years on the event make him go wander in the forest, in order to get out of his chest that feeling he was having. During that, he finds a circle of trees – and in each door he notices a different drawing, things he had never seen before.
He ends up enchanted by the Christmas tree door that in carved in one of the trees and accidentally goes to the Christmas City – and, of course, with all that is new to him on those lands, Jack gets dazzled, enchanted and gets to feel things he never imagined himself feeling before. It was happy, welcoming, cold and warm at the same time, something he wouldn’t be able to explain even if he tried – In short, the Christmas magic, right?
When going back to the Halloween City with that new experience, Jack gives an idea of a new type of celebration that year to his city: he makes a big presentation with his plans and ideas – but, of course, everything will happen on their way and with the resources they have on shadowy lands, because the skeleton presents only the idea about the festivities and not the real Christmas spirit – even because not even he can understand his feelings when he got in contact with that new reality.
Each citizen receives a chore so that Christmas on the lands of Halloween happens beautifully. Sally, a citizen – who is a rag doll made by the crazy scientist who lives there – ends up developing romantic feelings for Jack, but isn’t certain about that idea of transforming Halloween into Christmas.
Obssessed with the new idea, the Pumpkin King decides to kidnap Santa Claus and gives this mission to three mischievous kids (this is certainly my favourite part of the movie, I can sing the song to this day) and they have the chore of taking the Christmas figure to the boogie man called Oogie Boogie.
Without Santa Claus to distribute presents, Jack assumes the role and starts delivering the “presents” to children and that’s when he starts to understand the Christmas magic: when the same scene he lived on the Christmas City doesn’t repeat itself and children aren’t happy anymore, as well as people aren’t so united and excited.
It’s a very fun plot, in a weird scenery like the name in Portuguese tells us (The Strange World of Jack, in a literal translation), but with the utmost certainty in life is one of my very favourite movies this time of the year – it’s different than all that snow and vibrant colours.
It’s a good childhood memory for me and I believe that to many people that got til here – but, if you haven’t watched it yet, I guarantee: you won’t regret!
I confess I just watched, to this day, the Portuguese version; and the soundtrack in PT/BR is certainly one of the most genius things I had the chance to hear in my life – I believe that the original version is awesome as well, after all, in the hands of Danny Elfman, it couldn’t be different.
- Intro – This is Halloween
- Jack’s Lament
- What’s This?
- Town Meeting Song
- Jack’s Obsession
- Kidnap The Sandy Claws
- Making Christmas
- Oogie Boogie’s Song
- Sally’s Song
- Poor Jack
- Christmas Eve Montage
- End Title
And of Course: Watch to Nightmare Before Christmas
Available on the catalog of the new Disney stream platform, Disney+, and, of course, keep an eye open for TV’s schedule this Christmas: it’s usually a must.
I wish you all a Merry Christmas, with a lot of peace, harmony and love. Seize it, stay at home and protect yourselves, watch to all our recommendations and all Christmas movies that are on your TV schedule. Thank you so much for being with us until here!