“In 1980s Chicago, a 10-year-old sets out on a quest to get the Christmas gift of his generation: the latest and greatest video-game system.” – IMDB
I have to start out by admitting that, deep down, I’m not the most adventurous person. Well, adventurous may be the wrong word. I’m not the most spontanious person. I can be, but I prefer to do a little bit of research or to be referred to something by a person I trust. Luckily, I’m married to a person who does not need that and is willing to go out on a limb more than I am.
So, when he put on 8-Bit Christmas in early December, I was skeptical. I hadn’t heard anything about this movie, which is usually a bad sign. However, once I decided to give it a try, I was actually pleasantly surprised. Let me clarify…
8-Bit Christmas revolves around a tried and true trope of Christmas movies: a child is so focused on a toy/gift that he wants for Christmas that he forgets and has to be reminded of what is truly important about the holiday, family. This film goes even further with that storyline (while adding in a nice dose of 80s nostalgia a la Stranger Things), by having a modern day father tell his iphone-craving daughter about the time he wanted a Nintendo for Christmas. It has all of the moment you would expect: junior high school embarassment, the mocking of aged technology that’s only meant for half of the movie’s audience, etc.
Overall, however, the movie ends up playing well off of those tried and true tropes. You end up getting caught up in the nostalgia of it all. The movie ends up pulling on your heartstrings and I’ll admit, I even got a bit choked up (although I cry at anything so I know that’s not saying too much). It was by no means the most memorable Christmas movie, but it’s only I definitely did not regret watching and I may end up putting on every couple of year for that warming dose of nostalgia.
Rating: 6 out 10 Claire Bears
If you like this movie, you should also watch: A Christmas Story, Jingle All the Way
Streaming: HBO Max
With: Winslow Fegley, Neil Patrick Harris, Steve Zahn, June Diane Raphael, Bellaluna Resnick
Directed By: Michael Dowse