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Just about everyone knows someone who has been bullied, in ways big and small. Understandably, though, many victims are reluctant to speak about their experiences. We found some who aren't.
By Celeste Brown, Newsome High
For film buffs, it’s the most wonderful time of the year! The winter holidays have inspired a slew of famous movies including How the Grinch Stole Christmas, Home Alone, Elf and The Polar Express, to name a few Christmas classics adored by our generation. And a list of holiday favorites would not be complete without Eight Crazy Nights, Adam Sandler’s raucous Hanukkah sendup. There is a common theme throughout each: The main character stands out like a sore thumb. Of course, at the end of all the movies, the main characters are loved by everyone. They all accomplish something, such as save Christmas (Grinch and Elf) or experience something incredible (Home Alone and The Polar Express) or become better people in the end (Eight Crazy Nights). No matter how many times we watch them, these movies generate the same enthusiasm, and as we share them with friends we’re spreading the message that it’s often the most disliked or unassuming among us who can make the most change. Watch the television schedule or pop one or more in the player this season.
How the Grinch Stole Christmas
This Dr. Seuss classic jumped from book pages and has been airing on TV since before our generation was born. It’s one of my favorites. The Grinch is a green grouchy man with a heart that’s two sizes too small. He loathes the Whos, who adore the Christmas season and love to celebrate with instruments, games and singing. He schemes to take away Christmas by stealing all of the decorations, Christmas trees, gifts and food and, therefore, the Christmas spirit, from Whoville. Cindy Lou is a little Who who catches him in the act. On Christmas morning the Grinch finds that despite his actions Whoville is still singing and celebrating. Seeing this, his heart grows and he saves Christmas by bringing back all of the things he stole. He even serves the Whos their roast beast feast.
Will Ferrell plays the main character, Buddy the Elf, a human who grows up at the North Pole and discovers that he isn’t an elf at all. Santa also informs him that his dad is on the naughty list. He embarks on an adventure to find his father in New York City and aspires to return the Christmas spirit to the Big Apple. Buddy runs into many challenges after finally reaching the city: He is childish and immature, and his father is unaware he even has a son. Buddy finds a girlfriend and ensures that Santa’s sleigh flies on Christmas.
Eight Crazy Nights
With Adam Sandler creating and voicing many of the animated characters, you know this movie will be silly and heartwarming, if not a little crude. Davey Stone, who looks like Sandler, is a bitter meanie who escapes jail time because of a good-hearted referee named Whitey who vouches for him despite Stone’s horrible contempt for the old man. It turns out Davey’s mean streak is because his parents died in a car accident during Hanukkah when he was a kid, he realizes how lucky he is to know Whitey and, sniffle, tear, Davey turns nice.
The Polar Express
This beautiful film is about a boy who boards a magic train headed to the North Pole. The boy meets many new friends, including the conductor (voiced by Tom Hanks). He experiences a ghost rider on the train and explores the North Pole with a couple of other curious kids. They each have a chance to meet Santa Claus and receive a gift from him. The boy learns that if you just believe, the magic of life will never fade.
Eight-year-old Kevin is accidentally left at home while his family travels to France to celebrate Christmas. While his family is gone, Kevin fends for himself against two burglars, coming up with ingenious ways to keep the burglars out of his home. When his early efforts fail he faces them head-on with fire, ice, paint cans and his brother’s tarantula. Once his family realizes Kevin is missing, they frantically attempt to return home, the burglars are arrested and Kevin spends the rest of the holiday with his family.