Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Bad Santa |
The Unrated Version and Director's Cut
Actors: Billy Bob Thornton, Tony Cox, Lauren Graham, Brett Kelly, Lauren Tom
Studio: Buena Vista Home Video Release Date: 11/20/2007 Run time: 98 minutes Rating: Ur
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Bad Santa - Good Film - for lovers of Black Comedy
J. Fryer | Nicholasville, KY | 11/28/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"If you are a bah-humbug individual, a Billy Bob Thornton fan, and/or have an appreciation for dark comedy....THIS is the Christmas film for you! Oh, yes, it requires an open mind and the ability to appreciate the unique, but finally here is a holiday film for those who like their seasonal entertainment with a little less 'sugar and spice'.First, do not take your 11 year old to see this film, as did the gentleman sitting behind me in the theater. He elected to remain even though I advised him this was an adult film (seems the R-Rating didn't seem to do the trick). I stressed that was probably not suitable for his son - even if my answer to his inquiry: "Well, it's about Santa Claus isn't it?" was "YES". Because the entire answer was: "YES, but a very, very baaad Santa". After the movie, the viewer told me that I was correct, that he should have left, and that he had in fact started to leave several times during the film, but didn't. He added that he himself did not like the film. This made be all the more curious as to exactly why he elected to watch until the credits were rolling. All the other movie patrons must have checked the ratings (as they were all adults), read the reviews, watched the promos, and perhaps caught Billy Bob on every talk show on TV the previous week (where he spent an inordinate amount of time telling the public - 'This is NOT a family film'). They also must have enjoyed the film, because they all laughed, actually, they all laughed a lot.Being an avid, devoted fan of Thornton, I understand and would be first to admit that I am more than a little biased when it comes to Billy Bob. I think he is incapable of making a film that is not entertaining. That being said, I would have enjoyed 'Bad Santa' if Santa had been portrayed by some other actor (except perhaps Jim Carey, but I digress). However, I don't know any other actor who bring the pathos, the heart, the lewdness, the earthiness, the seediness, and the overall great performance to this film that Billy Bob did.Billy Bob Thornton continues to explore the depths of his talent and take fans along for the ride by always finding new and unique characters to portray. Generally he does this via the 'independent' film method, because indie films provide the greater opportunities for his enormous creativity.This time his choice was not a 'new' character, rather actually a very, very recognizable character - recognizable at least by name - Santa, and this time in a film by commercial film makers. That is where our acquaintance with the character of Santa ends. Willie Stokes' Santa may resemble a lot of characters that we know really exist, as opposed to old Kris Kringle. We know this because many of us have met just such confused people in our real lives, though usually not wearing red velvet suits. The individuals we knew were known to us in the guise of losers, con men, hard-drinkers, and otherwise less-than-perfect people who are just a little bit mixed up about who they are, where they are going, and exactly how to get there.The only disagreement I would have with many of the reviewing film critics about this film is their insistence that "Bad Santa' does not have a 'good hearted' ending. I would beg to differ. While I won't give it away, I would tell you it has what might be considered an ending that is totally 'appropriate' for a holiday film such as 'Bad Santa'. It isn't an 'It's A Wonderful Life' ending, but then again the film isn't 'Miracle on 34th Street'. But we already know that because the title reveals it from the git-go. I may be a bit of a softie when it comes to kids, but I must tell you some of the tears in my eyes at various moments in 'Bad Santa' were not tears of laughter.Speaking of kids, Brett Kelly, the young actor who plays 'the kid' in "Bad Santa" is priceless in this film and perfectly cast. Brett is the Coronji Calhoun (Tyrell Musgrove - Monsters Ball) of this film. Thornton is excellent in acting in films with children, this film being no exception.John Ritter, like Billy Bob, has played a variety of characters in a myriad of films during his career and is always 'absolutely on the mark' for the personality of each character. Rather than being 'sorry' for Ritter that his last film was 'Bad Santa'; I believe that making this film with his old friend (from 'Hearts Afire', the 80's TV series) Billy Bob Thornton, in their first film together since 'Sling Blade', was probably a tremendous source of fun and pleasure for Ritter. I am personally very glad that he and Billy Bob had the opportunity to co-star one last time before John's untimely death. While his on-screen time seemed short on this film, John Ritter, as usual, did an excellent job and was very funny, as was always his way.Open your mind, prepare for laughter, and give yourself the gift of a different kind of holiday cheer this year - go see 'Bad Santa'. If what you want for Christmas is a little break from the often false cheerfulness of the traditional and instead a swig of dark humor for the delight of your soul, 'Bad Santa' can definitely make all your wishes come true - whether you have been bad or good."
STAY AWAY FROM DIRECTORS CUT
lefthandof power | Memphis, TN | 12/18/2007
(2 out of 5 stars)
"If you are a fan of Bad Santa, DO NOT BUY THIS DVD. I bought it expecting extended and restored scenes, instead I got a totally different ending and hilarious scenes cut out.
This version ends with the little boy outside trying to clean up the blood on his front steps rather than giving the bully a swift kick in the nards.
One of the scenes cut out is the scene in the gym where Willie and Marcus are trying to teach the little boy how to defend himself. That was one of the funniest scenes in the movie.
The packaging is deceptive. If they had said, "new ending" on the notes, I would have left it alone. It didn't and I wasted my money. I thought I would come on here and post a warning.
The feel-bad hit of the winter
Wheelchair Assassin | The Great Concavity | 06/16/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"For those of us who can't quite get into the Christmas spirit, "Bad Santa" is a massive preemptive strike against all of the insufferable sentimentality we're going to be subjected to a few months from now. This movie is every bit as entertaining and funny as "School Of Rock," but where "School Of Rock" succeeded through the overwhelming weight of its good intentions, "Bad Santa" (its moderately heartwarming ending notwithstanding) is all about bad intentions. This movie, especially in its powerhouse first half, displays such a commitment to mean-spiritedness that you can't help but love it. Billy Bob Thornton's safe-cracking department-store Santa Willie is the epitome of ugliness, all the more so because he commits much of his mayhem in his work outfit. Early on we see him getting drunk and throwing up in an alley, and from there he remains in the gutter for much of the movie. He chain smokes, he wets himself in his chair, he fornicates in a dressing room, and above all, he swears. I don't find profanity inherently funny, but Thornton's acid tongue manages to turn four-letter words into weapons of unimaginable destructive power. More than anything I've seen since the "South Park" movie, "Bad Santa" manages to elevate nasty language into an art form.
Even in its moments of humanity, the movie doesn't aim too high. Willie does have a love interest, but not quite in the conventional sense: intead, it's a young bar waitress with a Santa fetish who demands that Willie wear his stocking cap during coupling. Willie also finds some meaning in his life by striking up an offbeat friendship with a fat, bullied kid named Thurman, a bond that manifests itself in one unforgettable scene when Willie beats the living hell out of the teen skateboarder who gave Thurman a black eye. Even though it's Thornton's show, "Bad Santa" also benefits from a top-notch supporting cast. In his last film role, the late John Ritter is the picture of ineffectualism as the mall manager; Bernie Mac is admirably slimy as the self-interested security chief; and the three-foot-tall Tony Cox belies his small size with a scene-stealing performance as Willie's "elf" and partner in crime. "Bad Santa" doesn't have an enormous level of plot development, but then it doesn't really need much. What's really important is the way the movie's cynicism slices and dices the sugary "cheer" (which is often cynical itself) that typically accompanies the holiday season. Christmas isn't all about irritating songs and people rioting in department stores over cheap presents, and we all owe a debt to "Bad Santa" for dumping a little snow on the parade."
Funniest film I've seen in ten years!
Wheelchair Assassin | 11/25/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Not since "There's something about Mary" have I laughed so hard in a movie theater! I got into one of the preview screenings of this last week in LA and I have to say 90% of the audience was laughing just as loud as me. Let the prudes stay home - this is a film for anyone who wants to laugh till it hurts!"