Kirk Cameron’s Saving Christmas
December 24, 2015 § Leave a comment
Okay, little confession. I originally planned to review something else in this Christmas season but given what I mentioned back in October, that certain “something else” is somewhere in my room that I cannot find. So with that, why not review something else that has already been reviewed many times before. Yeah, that would work because when Kirk Cameron’s Saving Christmas came out, everybody decide to tear this up immediately to shreds. From Brad Jones to Ben of Oddity Archive to to uh, 119 Ministries?!? Well, it is a Christian propaganda movie so that makes sense. And in addition, Rotten Tomatoes joined in the action enough that Kirk became so disillusioned (which he already was) and wants his fan base to make this movie certified fresh.
So really, this is really a hard way to review something because I already state the obvious on Rotten Tomatoes which became news late last year and I could tell you the plot… but how exactly? It’s Kirk playing a version of himself teaching his brother-in-law (that’s played by the director of this movie) about the faithful joys of Christmas with a hint of their comedic styles and materialism involved. And you know what? There, I explained the plot just now. The synopsis I brought up is kind of the whole premise of the movie. So how the fuck am I gonna do a review that’s different from all those other reviews before? Well, I have some interesting explaining on both Kirk and the director so that’s a bit of a start.
And it is about time where I wanted to talk about former child star Kirk Cameron, I have been waiting for this since… well, ever. Now I never seen an episode of Growing Pains and have not much interest to see it anyway. When it comes to family oriented sitcoms from the 80s, I’m more of a Family Ties and ALF kind of guy. So I didn’t know Kirk back then. No, the first time I came to know him is instead a dreadful kind of first time – has anybody seen the mid 1990s Kirk sitcom that aired on The WB? I did and I have seen bunch of episodes… that show is so friggin’ bad that I am currently tracking down the complete series and yet, it is so hard to find.
Kirk himself plays Kirk Hartman who wants his comic book artwork to give a greenlight which would have worked but it was the time when Rob Liefeld, Jim Lee and Randy Queen dominate the Wizard Top 10 artists list. Heck, I even remember an episode where he wanted to meet Stan Lee but instead of the co-creator of Marvel Universe, he met some other guy known as Stan Lee and that is the joke. Despite the show being bad, it can be watchable for bad sitcoms and I have seen tons of episodes of USA High at four in the morning to know it. BTW, that show in on YouTube but not Kirk? Heck, even one episode of Pauly Shore’s own sitcom made it there so it boggles me on why one of Kirk’s vanity projects didn’t.
And after that sitcom came the infamous Left Behind adaptation trilogy. Again, it’s watchable for bad end times propaganda so if you want something for bad movie riffing night, check these out and you will thank me later if you did. I heard nothing much from Kirk since then except when it comes to news reports involving crocoduck and him being homophobic or something. Then came Saving Christmas which I have been waiting to see all year, I’ll get to my thoughts on this shortly but I’m done with Kirk so how about I should waste a bit more time on the director, co-writer and co-star of the movie.
Enter Darren Doane which was more famous as a music video and commercials director. Honestly, I have issues with current state of directors whose work is originally known for music videos, they want to be like David Fincher and Russell Mulcahy but instead failed their approach to be Marcus Nispel and The Brothers Strause instead. Just because you make good music videos doesn’t equal to you thinking you can make good movies as well. But why bother complaining since Hollywood is diluted enough to say yes to anything bad nowadays. Darren did direct one Kirk Cameron vehicle before this called Unstoppable and have made a few bunch of flicks like Michael Madsen-starrer 42K which I saw everywhere on bargain bins.
And his music videos? I’ve seen a little to be honest but I’m not in a hurry to see the ones he did for Jason Mraz and MxPx. And last thing to mention about his body of work is that he did make two short movies for Malibu Comics which is a promo for Hardcase starring Gary Daniels and Firearm which is established as the zero issue of the comic book series. It’s a 90s speculator boom thing. And I have seen Firearm issue zero from start to finish and you know what? I should have review that one instead of this movie because this is both good and hilarious to watch even right down to these promos featured before the movie. In fact, I should throw in a link for you to see it for yourself.
Okay, enough stalling here and finally, my own thoughts on what I think of Kirk Cameron’s Saving Christmas. It is gloriously bad from start to finish and it’s obvious that you heard it all before. Production wise, it felt like you’re watching an awful Christmas movie like The Christmas Shoe and A Christmas Story 2 since the setting, the characters and storytelling felt a bit lifeless, unrealistic and sometimes preachy. And the message about it is that materialism is awesome to have at the holidays so yeah, Kirk is into this holiday enough that he likes being wealthy and wants everybody in the whole world to know it. Heck, he thinks Christmas is the only holiday in December to ever existed so to the ones celebrating Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, Festivus and anything else, he doesn’t matter about those other holidays here and gives no damn about it.
And the message he brings to convince Darren’s character is the stuff of crackpot theory legends. Kirk tries to explain his take on Jesus Christ, Santa Claus and the Christmas tree in the most questionable way possible. Now granted Santa Claus being a badass warrior is cool but it’s kinda been before if you look at Santa The Barbarian or in recent times, Grant Morrison’s take on the guy. Yeah, I brought up comics in this review so it doesn’t matter if you want the best comparison, the logics of this movie is similar to Bill Jemas’ infamous mini-series Marville since ooh, that one is bad and not in a good way. Just to give one example, Bill made Rush Limbaugh look like Ace Rimmer in this story.
Comic book aside, the acting is cheesy even to Bridgette Cameron doing nothing much until near the end when she participates in a out-of-nowhere dance sequence that kills every dance sequence in movie history. The best part in my opinion is as Santa Claus since the first sight of him is a look that caused laughter and the origin story is fine and the other part is the whole “War on Christmas” monologue which is ADR to the point that I want to see a fan-made clip of Seinfeld and George Constanza do the same in one episode. The story (or stories) felt like a confused anthology sketch movie that almost sort-of but not really worked, it is focusing on why materialism is cool to Kirk and his pack but with Kirk explaining it why heads off to it that he’s trying to parody it. And he failed at that but his failure is done in glorious WTF sense.
It is a strange movie to behold and is worth looking it. I do apologize if this review is like this but this is the best I could do for a review on something that’s already unreviewable at this point of time and try to differ this one from the others. When I find the one I’m looking for, I will review it since that one is kinda obscure and I did my checking on it. If not, then I don’t know, a episode of Beverly Hills 90210 might be another substitute but I can’t think of anything else. And hey, Kirk’s other sister Candace Cameron-Bure is reprising her famous role in the upcoming Fuller House and since I’m never really a fan of the original show, I’m guessing it might be as cheesy as what I already reviewed.
On second thought, never mind and I am so not watching this. Uh, anyway, Merry Christmas as well as other holidays that I mentioned and may have missed and hope 2016 is another good year. Come to think of it, 2015 seems alright to me except for one month I wish never existed so I don’t know, it is nearly time to throw in my best and worst list again.