I am not here to defend Elf as an outstanding piece of media. It is not revolutionary, it is not timeless, it is not earth-shattering. Elf is, actually, kind of stupid and predictable. But Elf is also funny, and gosh darn it, it’s heartwarming. And that should be enough reason to enjoy a movie.
Not every movie has to be dramatic and moody to be counted as worth watching. Despite what some might say, not every movie has to be Moonlight-caliber to be enjoyed. While movies like that definitely have their place, other movies are just fun and silly. And it’s okay to enjoy those too! Sometimes you just want to sit down and watch something easy and enjoy yourself, especially around Christmastime.
Because while Christmas is the most wonderful time of the year, it can also be the most stressful time of year. Families are tense, there’s panic over presents and decorations, and confusion about whose house are we going to and when; then amidst all that chaos stands a beloved Christmas comedy: Elf.
Elf doesn’t want you to sit down and ponder deep philosophical questions for two hours. It doesn’t want to wrench your heart and leave you low when the movie is over. Elf wants you lay back and laugh at Will Ferrell takes eating littered gum and getting hit by a taxi. Elf wants nothing more than for you to relax and enjoy your holiday.
So while I cannot tell you that Elf is a masterpiece of cinema, I can tell you that Elf has saved me from many potential holiday meltdowns. It’s not meant to change your life. It’s just meant to entertain you for an hour and a half, and for me it succeeds! Laughing at stupid comedy is a welcome distraction from the hustle and bustle of the holiday, and I will always spend my Christmases with Buddy the Elf.
Written by Michelle Beaulieu