The season of sap and nostaliga is upon us, and I am in my element. It’s a Wonderful Life, One Magic Christmas, Miracle on 34th Street, The Christmas Carol – more, more! I’m still not satisfied! Make me weep, make me sniffle, put a lump in my throat, give me shameless, unapologetic schmaltz. I want hard-fought happy endings. I want to be reminded of the power of love and the value of hope. I want to see that look on Jimmy Stewart’s face when he realizes that his life has made a difference; I want to be with Mary Steenburgen when she watches the husband she thought she’d lost come around the corner and back into her life – reminding her of what’s really important; I want to, once again, discover a grin on my face as the judge pushes that mountain of letters to Kris Kringle off his judge’s bench; and I want to hear little Tiny Tim ‘s voice saying, “God bless us, everyone!”
The best schmaltzy Christmas movies aren’t about the material trappings of Christmas, but help us see what really matters – community, friendship, love, forgiveness, redemption, generosity, good will to all men. These movies all have a message that stays with us long after the Christmas gifts have been unwrapped, and the New Year toasted.
Call me an incorrigible Schmaltz-monger. I ain’t apologizing.
May The Schmaltz be with you!