Will Vinton’s Claymation Christmas Celebration premiered in 1987 on CBS. It is essentially a series of musical segments that are introduced by a couple of dinosaur hosts, Rex and Herb.
Each of the musical numbers is well done in their own right. While most of them feature traditional clay stop motion, some of them experiment with some different effects using clay and glass. Some of them are comical, some of them are emotional, some are peaceful, others are joyful. All of them are absolutely excellent.
I do want to comment briefly on my favorite musical number in the show. It is the segment featuring the song “O Christmas Tree”. The segment starts with two children placing ornaments on a Christmas tree. One of the ornaments is a little house. The camera zooms in on the house, and into the window. Inside, some ginger bread men are dancing around a Christmas tree. The camera then zooms in on an ornament on their tree, into another little house. We are introduced to another Christmas scene centered around a Christmas tree. The camera continues to zoom in on ornaments, showing each of the characters inside, and then finally zooms in on the star of the innermost tree, then zooms out to reveal the original kids that placed the first ornament, and their tree is now fully trimmed. It’s an absolutely amazing sequence, and really brings the joy of Christmas to me.
It brought me great joy as a child to watch this with my family on Christmas Eve night. I love it so much that I save it for Christmas Eve each year. In many ways for me Christmas ends as the final credit disappears off the screen. This film gives you that wonderful feeling of sitting in front of a live fireplace.
Well that ends my Holiday tradition for this year, and I just want to wish everyone a happy holiday. Now enough of this gooey show of emotion, I’ll be back to my usual writings and rants right away.