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Bad Santa, a Review
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Bad Santa stars: Billy Bob Thornton, Tony Cox, Brett Kelly, Lauren Graham, Bernie Mac, & John Ritter

I really had no interest in seeing Bad Santa. From the trailers, it looked like a movie full of gratuitous stunts designed to make you laugh or make you want to hurl, but which had no relevance to plot or character. However, a co-worker invited me to see it with her and some other co-workers in the middle of work a couple days before Christmas. Like any wrongfully convicted felon, I jumped at the chance to participate in the jailbreak.

I laughed my ass from the first line of this movie to the last. I nearly peed my pants at one point. I am not a big fan of Billy Bob. He has bad mojo and creeps me out, but I will admit that he is a good actor and I have not seen any actor in recent memory who so perfectly embodied a role. He had just the right amount of everything needed to make me both loathe him and love him at the same time (loathe him because he is so fucking nasty and inappropriate and love him because he manages to allow just enough true emotion to peek through at exactly the right times).

Bad Santa, a.k.a. Willie (Thornton), and his evil little elf, a.k.a. Marcus (Cox), take their mall Santa show on the road, robbing a different place each year. Willie becomes more and more of a loser as Marcus becomes more and more of a dick. This year, Phoenix is the scene of the crime, where Willie meets a kid (Kelly) even more fucked up than he is, and a woman (Graham) with a Santa fetish who wants some hot Willie lovin.' John Ritter plays the mall manager and Bernie Mac plays the head of mall security. Both have underdeveloped roles, Ritter in particular, whose character disappears when the action heats up. It makes me wonder how many deleted scenes are going to be on the DVD.

I don't want to give any spoilers, but the ending is neither so cynical that it leaves you as black-hearted as you were when the movie started, nor is it so heart-warming that it detracts from the hilarity and rudeness of it all. I will leave you with one final thought, though:

Wooden pickle.

end of essay
By day, Michelle is an upstanding businesswoman and new mom. By night, she saves the world from peevishness and botheration at the Peevery. In her spare time, she writes what she knows and tries to show, not tell. | more essays by Michelle
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