How the Grinch Stole Christmas
To heck with the kids--this is one of the best holiday presents you can give yourself. Adapted from the children's book by Dr. Seuss, this charming story is one to watch every holiday season. It is just edgy enough to help you forget the more cloying aspects of Christmas, yet it is also sweet enough to remind you of the reason for all that holiday cheer. Animation genius Chuck Jones directed this 1966 television production featuring the voice of Boris Karloff as the mean greenie. Bitter and selfish, the Grinch decides to steal Christmas away from the Whos, the sweet little folk who live at the bottom of his mountain home. When little Cindy Loo Who returns his hateful act with kindness, she melts the old miser's heart. There are many reasons to watch this: inventive wordplay, Karloff's impressive narration, and a very memorable soundtrack. --Rochelle O'Gorman
Horton Hears a Who!
Chuck Jones was chief animator on this lively adaptation of the famous book by Dr. Seuss. The story of a friendly elephant named Horton who discovers--deep inside a daisy--a tiny city called Whoville with tiny, intelligent residents--this film (fleshed out a bit from the source) is strong on character and has striking, appealing visuals. The little folks of Whoville, with their natural air of aristocracy, are a kick, and when they come to see Horton as a hero for his democratic view of all life big and small, the effect is quite touching. This should be a real treat for kids already familiar with the book, and just might inspire those who haven't read it to pick it up. --Tom Keogh
If you own the DVD and have your doubts (some reviewers seem to), try this: Take a look at the documentary extra hosted by Troy McClure. Throughout the documentary, they run clips of the Grinch in the background where the color is RIGHT! A beautiful bright-green Grinch--just like you remember. Compare that to the main feature (the thing you actually paid for), where he is washed out and nearly yellow.
After living 15 years in Denmark I really came to miss some of the Christmas specials from my youth in the USA. I suppose anybody in the US with cable gets quite sick of these, but for me, the Grinch and Charlie Brown's Christmas were always an important part of building the Christmas spirit. Well, the spirit here seems to be all about greed and incompetence; sell the defective version this year, then sell the corrected version to the same people next year.