Tuesday, January 1, 2013

VeggieTales: The Ultimate Christmas Collection DVD




It’s a Wonderful Life meets The Polar Express in a VeggieTale adaptation.

VeggieTales: The Ultimate Christmas Collection DVD
Running Time: Approximately 243 minutes plus a 25 Favorite Christmas Songs! CD

It’s a Wonderful Life meets The Polar Express in a VeggieTale adaptation of the former, which borrows from the latter. Since It’s a Wonderful Life is one of my favorite movies, this alone makes this worthwhile for me. Others who enjoy the classic should find It’s a Meaningful Life rewarding.

If somehow the aforementioned movies have escaped your notice, this adaptation may have even greater impact as you recognize that God is at work even when hope is lost. This goes beyond the Frank Capra movie by infusing it with biblical truth and values. By making God central to this encouraging story, the producers make this one of my favorite VeggieTales episodes.

If you wonder about the influence of The Polar Express, a special train ride reminiscent of that film plays a central role. Here, the setting is different from the two films, but the characters and plot are similar, though deeper for the reason I mentioned, right down to the closing Steven Curtis Chapman song, “Meant to Be,” which fits perfectly.

This is one of six episodes on this DVD, one being a Christmas Sing-Along Songs!  Children can now drive their parents crazy by singing along to a wide variety of Christmas songs, a number of them not part of the other episodes found here.

Each of the narratives, some which go back to early days, is excellent. Individually, they cover different aspects of Christmas. The Toy that Saved Christmas emphasizes giving over getting. Jesus is The Star of Christmas, regardless of what appears in a pageant. Saint Nicholas: A Story of Joyful Giving depicts the wasteland of a self-centered life. The Little Drummer Boy highlights the importance of forgiveness.

These are so well-done that I forget they are more for little ones than me, and yet, that is the beauty of VeggieTales. They are enjoyed and appreciated by all ages.

If you need help finding what is true, right and praiseworthy in the season, these stories consistently share wisdom in clear, clever and humorous ways. I dare anyone to watch an episode and not feel a bit more lighthearted and hopeful.
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