Movie Review Weekly Roundup: December 19 – December 25, 2021

A Charlie Brown Christmas (1965) directed by Bill Melendez and written by Charles Schulz.

The following is part of a weekly compilation of movie reviews from The Buzz Track staff. These movies were watched in the previous week, and the reviews were originally posted on Letterboxd.

Anna and the Apocalypse (2017)

DIRECTOR: John McPhail.
WRITERS: Alan McDonald, Ryan McHenry.
MPAA RATING: R – Viewer discretion is advised.
GENRES: Musical, Comedy, Horror.
LENGTH: 1h 33min.
LANGUAGE: English.
WHERE TO RENT: JustWatch or Prime Video.
★★★★★ | WATCHED: December 24, 2021.

The quickest way to describe this movie would be to call it a zombie Christmas comedy musical. Another way to describe it would be comparing it to something like if Shaun of the Dead was moved to Scotland during Christmas time and turned into a high school musical. It’s actually pretty well done, truly enjoyable, funny British humor, and catchy songs throughout the entire movie. Dagnabit, I would not be surprised if someone tries to convert this movie into an off-Broadway theater production. It has been about three years since the first time I watched this movie. It still holds up very well. The tone and context of the story hit differently now compared to the first time I watched it. We are approaching the end of a second pandemic year. The story’s use of a zombie virus outbreak, social lockdowns, and the threat of catching the virus is presently eerie.

A Charlie Brown Christmas (1965)

DIRECTOR: Bill Melendez.
WRITERS: Charles M. Schulz.
GENRES: Animation, Comedy, Drama.
LENGTH: 25min.
LANGUAGE: English.
WHERE TO RENT: JustWatch or Apple TV+.
★★★★☆ | WATCHED: December 25, 2021.

This movie is always a nostalgic classic to watch for the Christmas holiday. I watched it on broadcast television when I was a kid. And it is always perfect for family time viewing.

The Silent Partner (1978)

DIRECTOR: Daryl Duke.
WRITERS: Curtis Hanson (screenplay), Anders Bodelsen (novel).
MPAA RATING: R – Viewer discretion is advised.
GENRES: Crime, Drama, Comedy.
LENGTH: 1h 46min.
LANGUAGE: English.
WHERE TO RENT: JustWatch or Prime Video.
★★★★★ | WATCHED: December 25, 2021.

This movie would have to be one of the greatest holiday-themed bank heist stories ever. It has Elliot Gould in the leading role as a socially awkward bank teller who quickly finds himself in the deep end of a bank heist plan gone awry. There is also an appearance from John Candy in a small role before his acting career took off a few years later. I truly enjoyed this movie and want to watch it several more times, most likely around the Christmas holiday every year.

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