Tag Archives: movies

Ranking Rankin Bass Christmas Specials

Earlier this year, I wrote about a dozen reviews covering various Rankin/Bass Christmas specials, which was made possible due to some DVD collections we bought containing a bunch of their work that I had never heard of before.  This was generally a fun endeavor (even if a few were rather painful to watch), but I just realized that I had failed to actually rank them.  (You could say that these specials were made for…Rankin…what?)  So today, I shall be ranking every Rankin/Bass Christmas special that I’ve seen from worst to best.  It will not include A Miser Brothers Christmas from 2008, which was actually made by Warner Bros.  Oh, and if you’re curious about full reviews, then here’s a link to my last review of Jack Frost from 1979, which includes links to most of the others at the bottom.

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Jack Frost (1979) Review

For this particular week of Rankin/Bass reviews, I’ve just got one movie for you all, Jack Frost from 1979.  (Because, frankly, I’m tuckered out after writing roughly a dozen reviews!)  This is yet another Rankin/Bass Christmas special that I had never seen before, but which I had heard good things about.  While it was a bit more difficult for me to find this one, I think it was worth the effort.

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The Life & Adventures of Santa Claus (1985) Review

This week, we’re focusing on Rankin/Bass origin stories for Santa Claus.  Last time, we discussed one of my favorite Christmas specials, Santa Claus is Comin’ to Town (1970).  Today, however, we are reviewing the more obscure The Life & Adventures of Santa Claus (1985), which is based off the story of the same name by L. Frank Baum, the very same author of The Wizard of Oz!

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Santa Claus is Comin’ to Town (1970) Review

Now that I’ve reviewed every Christmas special from our marathon back in March, I decided to check out a few more Rankin/Bass specials that people seem to rate quite highly.  Our theme this week is “Santa Claus origin stories”, with this Friday’s review covering The Life & Adventures of Santa Claus (1985).  But first, I’d like to discuss a personal favorite of mine, the more well-known Santa Claus is Comin’ to Town from 1970!

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‘Twas the Night Before Christmas (1974) Review

This newest week of Christmas special reviews has no particular theme, and it won’t just be Rankin/Bass.  This Friday, we have a sort of bonus review, if you will, of It’s Christmastime Again, Charlie Brown (1992) because, frankly, I just didn’t know where else to put it.  But today, we’re going to be talking about the Rankin/Bass animated short, ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas from 1974!

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Pinocchio’s Christmas (1980) Review

Last time, we reviewed The Leprechauns’ Christmas Gold from 1981, a charming little special whose greatest fault lie in the fact that it had absolutely nothing whatsoever to do with Christmas!  Our focus today is on the stop motion Pinocchio’s Christmas (1980), which does a far better job at retelling the general Pinocchio story with a Christmas twist.  But which pained my soul greatly in so many other areas.

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The Leprechauns’ Christmas Gold (1981) Review

For this week of Rankin/Bass Christmas special reviews, we’re focusing on stop motion specials from the early ‘80’s that prove Rankin/Bass’ obsession with making everything into a Christmas special, even if it shouldn’t be….or didn’t need to be.  Today, I’ll be reviewing The Leprechauns’ Christmas Gold (1981), and next time, we’ll be discussing a Christmas-themed retelling of Pinocchio with…um, the aptly named Pinocchio’s Christmas (1980).

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Rudolph and Frosty’s Christmas in July (1979) Review

Our focus this week is Rankin/Bass specials starring Frosty the Snowman.  Last time, we discussed Frosty’s Winter Wonderland (1976).  Considering that Frosty is probably the second most well-known character to star in Rankin/Bass’ work, after Rudolph, of course, it makes sense that they would eventually get a crossover.  And this crossover is the topic of today’s post, Rudolph and Frosty’s Christmas in July (1979).

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Frosty’s Winter Wonderland (1976) Review

The Rankin/Bass reviews continue for another week, and this time, we’re focusing on some specials starring Frosty the Snowman, the animated Frosty’s Winter Wonderland (1976) and the stop motion Rudolph and Frosty’s Christmas in July (1979).  I grew up watching Frosty the Snowman (1969) on VHS as a duckling, so it was interesting to see the sentient snowman in action once again.  For today’s review, we’ll be discussing Frosty’s Winter Wonderland.

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Nestor the Long-Eared Christmas Donkey (1977) Review

Our focus this week is on Rankin/Bass’ multiple attempts to recapture the popularity of their most well-loved work, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer (1964).  Last Monday, we talked about Rudolph’s Shiny New Year (1976), where a baby is mocked for his big ears.  While that movie was surprisingly entertaining, I can’t say I’m feeling as positive towards this next one, another stop-motion special by the name of Nestor the Long-Eared Christmas Donkey from 1977.  You can already tell where this one is going, can’t you?

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