Here are Mouse Troop's picks for the Four Best Holiday Specials on Netflix:
#1 - DRAGONS: GIFT OF THE NIGHT FURY
Directed by Tom Owens, this film packs an amazing amount of story and character depth into its 22 minute running time. Berk truly comes across as a real place with a history.
Note: Although sold on DVD as a separate title, its bundled with other Dreamworks specials on Netflix. You'll find it as the third episode of Dreamworks Holiday Classics.
#2 - A VERY BARRY CHRISTMAS
Fast-paced and laugh-out-loud funny, this tale introduces us to a terrific cast of likable eccentrics, both at the North Pole and the Australian Outback. You will believe an overweight crocodile can fly!
3) RADIO CITY CHRISTMAS SPECTACULAR
Beautifully filmed, this live performance combines incredible dancing with mind-blowing digital stage projections that blur the line between reality and clever illusion. The Rockettes never cease to amaze, whether they're marching in precise formation as toy soldiers or masquerading as dozens of mischievous rag dolls.
It's a charming, thrilling, one-of-a-kind show.
4) MR. MAGOO'S CHRISTMAS CAROL
When you're alone, alone in the world
When you're alone in the world
Blown away leaves get blown in the world
Swirled away leaves get swirled.
This -- the world's first animated Christmas television special -- remains one of the sharpest and most heartbreaking retellings of the Dickens classic in entertainment history. No one gets to the end of this amazing fifty-minute masterpiece without tearing up.
It starts off seeming so lightweight -- with slapstick comedy as Magoo rushes to get to the theater in time for his starring role as Scrooge -- but then the tale begins..and it is absolutely unforgettable. It's an amazingly tight and effective condensation of the story, hitting every important note and building up to the emotional payoff with masterful precision.
Now trees with a sigh
Stand and shiver while their leaves fall and die
And all my dreams are there
wrapped up somewhere
in summer leaves
And here's a surprise Disney connection: a performance of the above song, "Winter Was Warm" by none other than Jodi Benson!
Other great songs in the show include "Ringle, Ringle," "The Lord's Bright Blessing," "We're Despicable," and the show's best number, "All Alone in the World."
If you saw this as a child, I'll bet this clip holds the two scenes you never, ever forgot:
There you have it -- four great, imaginative Holiday specials that provide something a bit different from the great-but-oft-repeated likes of Charlie Brown, the Grinch and Rudolph.
Hopefully, next year will bring some Disney classics to fit in here. In the meantime, however, Happy Snoggletog!