Happy Holiday family films

In the Audience

By NICK ROGERS

Hello, good neighbors! The Historical Society of the Upper Mojave Desert is proud to present two wonderful family film classics in December. Please read on ...

You won’t want to miss our very special film presentation on Sunday, Dec. 8, at 2 p.m. at the Historic USO Building.

“Concerts on Film” presents a special showing of a classic holiday ballet with music by Tchaikovsky. In this film the ballet is performed by the United Kingdom’s Royal Ballet. Look for Clara, a mouse army, dancing snowflakes and all your favorite characters. See it on our big screen in HD with the great sound system! Holiday treats and hot cocoa will be provided. Our usual refreshments will be also available for purchase. We may even have a special appearance by a jolly old elf!

Call 760-375-8456 for film title, if you haven’t figured that out by now.

Now, dear readers, at the risk of giving away the title of our first “Heartwarming Holidays” film presentation, I will refer to certain characters as “pixies.” Get my drift? Really, not much of stretch to guess the title! In this wildly popular 2003 film ... on Christmas Eve in 1973, an orphaned infant boy stows away in Santa Claus’ sack. When discovered back at the North Pole, he is adopted by “Papa Pixie” (Bob Newhart). Papa names his son Buddy. Buddy grows up at the North Pole believing he is a “pixie,” but due to his human size is unable to perform pixie tasks.

When Buddy accidentally learns that he is human, Papa explains that he was born to Walter Hobbs (James Caan) and Susan Wells, and was given up for adoption without Walter knowing. Susan died and Walter currently works for a children’s book publisher, Greenway Press, helmed by controlling and uncaring CEO Mr. Greenway (Michael Lerner) in the Empire State Building in New York City. Buddy travels to find his real father, Walter, whom Santa (Ed Asner) indicates is on the naughty list because of his greed and selfishness.

Buddy decides to set out to save Walter and to save Christmas in a world of cynics. Oh, and along the way, he bonds with his stepmother, Emily (Mary Steenburgen) and her son and his half-brother, Michael (Daniel Tay), and... he falls in love with Jovie, (Zooey Deschanel) a bored co-worker at Gimbel’s. He also insults Miles Finch, a vertically challenged, best-selling children’s author (Emmy award-winning actor Peter Dinklage) who attacks Buddy for (mistakenly) calling him a “pixie” (you know, that three-letter word). And, if that weren’t enough, Buddy lands in hot water for exposing Gimbel’s Santa Claus as a fake!

This wonderful classic, named one of the favorite films of the holiday season by many film critics, screens on Wednesday, Dec. 11, at 7 p.m.

Our “Super Star” Snack Bar opens at 6:30 with a wide variety of taste-tempting noshes and drinks. There will also be free tasty Christmas cookies for our film buffs! As, always, we don’t charge an admission fee; however, we get that tingly holiday feeling when we see a full donation jar!

Now, if you still haven’t guessed at the title, please give us a call at 760-375-8456, Tuesday through Saturday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., or stop by the Historic USO Building for current schedules for both of our film series.

Please note: There will be NO film presentation on Wednesday, Dec. 25 ... because, well, you know!

Come back and see us in January for a very special Classic Movie Night film series featuring outstanding stories and performances by African American film artists. You won’t want to miss this one!

Story First Published: 2019-11-29