Ted Wilson Reviews the World: It’s a Wonderful Life
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★☆☆☆☆ (1 out of 5)
If you’re looking for a movie to watch this holiday season, I do not suggest It’s a Wonderful Life. It’s one of those things that remains a classic despite not being any good, like Star Wars or turkey.
It’s a Wonderful Life is an art film (I assume, because it’s in black and white), and art films always make me sleepy, so I dozed in and out while watching this. It’s about a man played by Jimmy Stewart who takes his own life on Christmas Eve by throwing himself off a bridge. However, he’s in such an inebriated state — possibly brought on by drug use or alcoholism — that he suffers from vivid hallucinations of magical time travelers.
These beings turn Jimmy Stewart invisible and take him through town to show him all the things he did wrong. The last thing I want to do when I’m feeling bad about a choice I’ve made is to have to relive it. I’d much rather just go dancing and forget about all my troubles, but these time travelers are some real masochists.
Jimmy Stewart doesn’t once take advantage of his ability to turn invisible. He never tries to spy on a woman changing or knock a vase off an end table to freak somebody out. If I could turn invisible and time travel I would have been having way more fun than this guy, even if I was on the brink of suicide. In fact, especially in that case!
As you can imagine, there were a lot of things that made him want to kill himself, from financial to relationship problems. It’s also implied that he drowned a boy in a frozen lake. At any rate, Jimmy’s character is a real drama queen because he chose Christmas Eve to kill himself. What a way to ruin the holiday for everyone else.
There’s nothing likable about this character. He’s selfish and not much of a critical thinker. Every time his face came on screen I would hold my hand up so as to not have to look at him. He was much better in Rear Window.
Eventually he decides he wants to live, so the magical time travelers bring him back to life and he starts running through town screaming, “I’m alive! I’m alive!” That’s not news to anyone. The real news should be, “Time travel is possible! Time travel is possible! I can turn invisible!” He literally doesn’t tell anyone about what he’s experienced. That’s the ONLY thing I would be talking about.
I couldn’t even bear to finish this movie so I just turned it off. I hate to be so negative in one of my reviews, especially during such a happy time of year, but I feel the need to warn you not to watch this. There are plenty of other Christmas movies to watch, like Eyes Wide Shut.
I’m giving It’s a Wonderful Life one star because it’s Christmas.
BEST FEATURE: Jimmy Stewart is wearing a very stylish suit.
WORST FEATURE: Donna Reed doesn’t sing at all.
Please join me next week when I’ll be reviewing some pencil shavings.