31 days of festive-ass flicks, day 12: bad santa

The twelfth day of festive-ass flicks was Bad Santa which I watched twelve-ish hours after I was supposed to AND by myself while I did a million other things to prepare for my TENTH ANNUAL CHRISTMAS PARTY and also dicked around on the internet because I’ve seen this one before. A lot. [Calendar.] [Also, spoilers.]

I like Bad Santa a lot because I like stories about losers. Losers are inherently more interesting than winners and they have a tendency to be not only more complex, but better written and developed. Sorry heroes and good guys, losers are where it’s at.

Bill Bob Thornton’s Santa is great. You kind of have to hate him and that’s really important for the shaping of this story. This dude is a DOUCHE and an asshole and a hateful, miserable piece of shit and so, as the story develops, you have to learn to like him as he slowly redeems himself and grows. And you do! And it’s so successful and kind of quiet and he never becomes a totally good guy, but he tries to do the right thing by this weird, awesome, sad kid who needs him. And it just works really well and is great.

Everyone in this is great, actually. Including John Ritter and Bernie Mac who are both dead now. That’s depressing. Tony Cox is great. Lauren Graham is smoking hot, but she’s also really tender and careful and not necessarily as developed or interesting as she should be, but I think you end up liking her a lot anyway. And, shockingly, I don’t get any whisper of slut-shaming around her character either. She sleeps with Santa as soon as she meets him, but there’s nothing in the movie that indicates that there’s anything wrong with it. SO RARE.

And that weird sad kid. SO WEIRD AND SAD. Brett Kelly is probably always going to be that fat kid with curly hair, but I think what he does in this is kind of remarkable. He’s so lonely and so sad and the viewer feels really bad and awful and sorry for him, but he’s positive and gentle and cherubic and he just likes Santa and wants to be his friend. When he tells Billy Bob Thornton that he knows he isn’t Santa but he hoped Billy Bob would get him a gift anyway because they’re friends? I legit lose my shit. FRIENDSHIP. And hope. And sadness. And yeah. It’s great, so shut up.

The only part of this movie that I don’t like is that there are two scenes of extended food consumption that not only turn my stomach but make me want to murder everyone involved in creating them. I have misophonia and Bernie Mac’s eating in his office while he talks to John Ritter is PHYSICALLY miserable to me. I had to pause it three or four times just to get through. And then Billy Bob Thornton does it to me later with broccoli. WHY. WHY DO MOVIE PEOPLE EVER THINK THIS IS A GOOD IDEA?! Stop it, stop it right now.

ANYWAY, this one’s real good and I’m sad I had to watch it alone because my girlfriend has never seen it. It’s funny and it’s touching and it has a happy ending. Warm holiday fuzzies.