By Jeremy Pearson in Arts & Entertainment
December 8, 2011
It’s easy to get lost in the hustle and bustle of holiday commercialism today. Though, there’s always the classic Christmas movies, like “Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer,” and “The Grinch,” that bring you back into the true spirit of the season.
The classic 1970 Claymation film, ”Santa Claus is Comin’ to Town,” continues to teach us the values of the Christmas spirit year after year. No matter what age you are, the movie is a reminder of what is important as we live in our materialistic society.
In the movie, the people of Northern Europe living in Sombertown are stuck in a suppressed totalitarian government, stopping them from experiencing the joy of life.
Kris Kringle, raised by elves beyond the treacherous mountain ridge, was taught to be an educated member of society and learned the value of toys and selfless giving.
While growing up, Kris dreamed of taking the toys to the kids of Sombertown since his elf family was unable to cross the mountainous wilderness.
During Kris’ childhood the supreme leader, The Burgermeister Meisterburger, was actively getting rid of all the toys in the town. Wiping out the publics toy supply kids had nothing to do but work and get things done. Without the kids’ entertainment and with constant chores the people’s morale just kept shrinking while happiness was getting dimmer.
After Kris became a man, he took a journey with a bag of toys and made it to Sombertown and saw how depressing the childrens’ lives were.
All the adults in the town rejected Kris because the toys he was carrying were illegal, but he didn’t care because he knew that the children deserved a nice little toy to take away the stresses of life.
Of course the Burgermeister, hating toys, tried to arrest Kris and his original attempt to give the kids gifts failed.
Most people, after barely escaping jail time, would just give up and go home, but Kris was a really good guy. Going back through the mountain pass, he came across the Winter Warlock who was evil to the core and had an icy heart.
Kris Kringle didn’t lose his cool after meeting the evil wizard Winter Warlock. Most people would panic, but Kris, in his unlimited good nature, wanted to spread kindness and as he did with the people of Sombertown and shared a toy with the Winter Warlock, breaking his icy shield. Kris then taught him effective behavior changing methods to prevent the wizard from ever turning evil again, and in turn the wizard taught him some magic tricks such as making a crystal snowball.
Times were getting tougher and the Burgermeister was becoming stricter with the children’s toys. An epic person like Kris who knew that the kids needed something to make them happy decided to not give up his mission just because a non-sensible Burgermeister said toys were no good. Kris then decided to get dirty when the town had an order to keep all doors locked in the night.
Chimney climbing was not beneath Kris and he wasn’t afraid to climb into houses even with the dangers of lung cancer and the off chance that a fireplace would be lit to keep the house warm throughout the night.
Eventually the totalitarian government was getting too persistent with Kris and his Kringle family so they had to build a castle in the North to ensure their safety while making toys for the children.
The Kringles were okay with this because of their constant will to give while receiving nothing in return.
The Christmas classic Claymation “Santa Claus is Comin’ to Town” can teach us a lot about the Christmas spirit. Kris Kringle, a back mountain boy raised by elves knew what it really meant to be happy. He wasn’t concerned with materialism or making his own life better. He only wanted to take the joy that he already had and spread it to the people who actually needed it, such as children with no means of making their own toys or finding ways of entertainment to get them through their daily list of chores.
It takes a guy as pure as Santa Claus to show us that the important part of Christmas is to give and love the people around you. Even though Kris was giving toys to the children, the thing that made them happy wasn’t the toy itself but the man behind the toy, that sacrificed so much to give the children a little bit of happiness to break up their depressing day.
At the end of the movie the question was asked, “Why do you bother to give toys like you do when there is so much unhappiness in the world?”
The narrating postman simply responded “Poor, misguided folks. They missed the whole point. Lots of unhappiness? Maybe so, but doesn’t Santa take a little bit of that unhappiness away? Doesn’t a smile on Christmas morning scratch out a tear cried on a sadder day? Not much maybe. But what would happen if we all tried to be like Santa and learned to give as only he can give: of ourselves, our talents, our love and our hearts? Maybe we could all learn Santa’s beautiful lesson and maybe there would finally be peace on Earth and good will toward men.”
It’s amazing how a silly Claymation, which is shrugged off by most, is packed with such an inspiring message of what the Christmas spirit really is and not what we have turned it into in our materialistic society.