Living for fun, shouldering no responsibilities and trolloping around in a drunken haze with any guy who'll have her, Cindy Wegman is trailer park trash through and through - so much so that when one of her kids' fathers dies and returns to herald the coming of three Christmas spirits to guide her towards redemption (ala Dickens' 'A Christmas Carol'), she only gets the trashy sort she deserves.Written by
We Wish You a Merry Christmas
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Love it, different and fresh
While I don't believe in the phrase "guilty pleasure", if I did, I would use it to describe my love for the movie All American Christmas Carol. This movie is so trashy and so tacky, everyone in my family teases me for liking it so much, and it's earned the nickname "Trailer Trash Christmas" in my house. Nevertheless, it's one I look forward to watching every year, albeit all by myself.
Charles Dickens's classic tale gets a new environment in this movie, and the Scrooge who needs a Christmas makeover is the white-trash Taryn Manning who lives in a trailer park. She teaches her children that "work is for suckers" and uses her idiotic boyfriend for his money while playing around with Alex Solowitz. When she misses out on her son's school Christmas play because of a late-night rendezvous, she gets visited by three spirits to help change her priorities.
This version is really different, and I understand why some people can't stand it. Jake Marley getting killed by a paintball, the Ghost of Christmas Past turning into a drunken, beer-bonging stripper, and a spray-painted Christmas tree might be jarring and ridiculous to some viewers. I see past those changes and find the humor in them. There's still a do-gooder Bob, a Tiny Tim, and Scrooge's miserliness. The basic point of the story is still there. Her childhood memories have tainted her views on Christmas, romance, and money, and when you watch them, you understand. The present still reminds her of what she's lost, and the future still scares her into wanting to change. She's just dressed in cut-off shorts and has ratted-out hair while she does it. And she says things like, "I can't believe that dirty ho is trying to steal my man!"
I won't tell you to give this one a shot if you don't think you'll like it. But maybe the next time someone tells you they like it, you'll understand. Or, if you secretly watch it when no one's looking, you can take comfort knowing you're not the only person who loves it.
DLM warning: If you suffer from vertigo or dizzy spells, like my mom does, this movie might not be your friend. Each time a ghost is introduced, the camera tilts unexpectedly and it will make you sick. When Taryn wanders down the school corridor alone, cruises the shop aisles alone, and sits in her car alone, look away until the ghosts appear. In other words, "Don't Look, Mom!"
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