Film / Saving Christmas

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/saving_christmas_8186.jpg
Take up your giant candy cane and your Palantír, Kirk Cameron; Christmas is in trouble again!

Saving Christmas is Kirk Cameron's 2014 faith-based Mockumentary on how symbols like Santa Claus, the Christmas tree, and commercialism are all a part of the true meaning of the birth of Jesus Christ.

Not to be confused with the common Christmas Special plot where the characters have to help out Santa, nor is it to be confused with Ernest Saves Christmas.

Saving Christmas contains the following tropes:

  • Artistic Licence History: Kirk's retelling of St. Nicholas giving Arius a No-Holds-Barred Beatdown is based on the popular story of the two coming to blows at the First Council of Nicaea. While the theological debates did get heated, the event itself never happened because Arius was never present at the council he wasn't a bishop.
  • As Himself: Kirk Cameron and Real Life sister Bridgette play themselves.
    • Creator Cameo: The film's director, Darren Doane, plays Bridgette's husband.
  • Author Tract: Obviously, but Cameron spends the first four minutes of the film sitting in an easy chair next to a Christmas tree pontificating about how great materialism is, and how other people are just wet blankets and don't really like hot chocolate.
  • Badass Santa: Cameron's retelling of the origin of Saint Nicholas involves him beating the tar out of someone.
    • Nothing is said about any real intellectual debate beforehand and Santa looks like a psychopath. One gets the impression that it's okay to go out and assault people who believe differently.
  • Buffy Speak: Kirk wants to imagine the St. Nicolas story as more The Lord of the Rings-y.
  • Character Filibuster/Motor Mouth:
    • Diondre rambles at Christian about various things, like T-shirt Friday.
    • Then there's the conspiracy theorist who babbles at Diondre about the War on Christmas. Diondre was rather shocked, ironically since he does the same thing.
  • The Complainer Is Always Wrong: Even if he's being very quiet and respectful, apparently.
  • Covers Always Lie/Never Trust a Trailer: The poster and trailer imply that it's about stripping away materialism from the holiday season. In actuality, the film actively embraces said materialism.
    • Plus, the cover/poster makes the movie look a lot more fun than it actually is.
  • Easy Evangelism: Kirk tells Christian that his feelings are "all wrong"; no investigation of the source of his feelings and thoughts. In response, Christian breakdances not long after.
  • Family-Unfriendly Violence: The film clearly aims to reach families, and in the intro Kirk mentions how sometimes parents in bedtime stories might be "thinking the stories were a bit too scary". And then a scene has a quite detailed retelling of Herod's massacre of the innocents.
  • Filming For Easy Dub: The reason why the conspiracy theorist covers up his mouth with a cup. In a live-action film.
  • The Grinch: The ironically named Christian is down on Christmas because it's too materialistic.
  • Hypocrite:
    Kirk: Sure, don't max out your credit cards. But remember, this is a celebration of the eternal God taking on a material body. So it's right that our holiday is marked with material things.
  • Hijacked by Jesus: Kirk's thesis is that even the secular traditions of Christmas all reflect the birth of Jesus in some way or other. Also there are NO pagan origins.
  • Hollywood Atheist: Surprisingly enough, downplayed. Kirk does attempt to rebut several common atheistic arguments about Christmas, but the film doesn't really do much to demonize atheists in general, and just lumps them in with the other non-fundamentalist Christian viewpoints.
  • Insane Troll Logic: The entire film.
    • For instance, as one review noted, the reasoning behind pagan-based Christmas trees?:
    There are trees in the Garden of Eden, and Jesus was crucified on planks of wood, so ta dah Christmas trees!
    • A rather epic strain of logic using the word "material" in that buying material goods celebrates God's material form, Jesus. This obviously ignores that the Bible and story of Jesus existed before the word "material," and that Jesus' "material" form is more about him becoming a flesh-and-blood human being to walk among us. Not as endorsement to indulge ourselves with big elaborate meals and spending excessive amounts of money on frivolous things.
    • Santa, Satan, get it? Same letters. Because that isn't a coincidence.
    The Cinema Snob: Which is why God is a dog.
  • Meaningful Name: "Christian" parrots many objections to Christmas celebrations that are popular among certain Fundamentalist Christians.
  • No Mouth: The conspiracy theorist covers his mouth with a cup while talking.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: Kirk is red to Christian's blue.
  • Saving Christmas: Pretty much averted, despite the title, because Santa Claus doesn't seem to be in any danger from Christian's straw arguments.
  • Slasher Smile: Uncle Bill in his Santa outfit spends several minutes looking menacingly directly at the viewer, waving his fist and cracking his knuckles as if getting ready to re-enact the Saint Nicholas beatdowns that were just shown.
  • Straw Character: Christian is bummed out that Christmas is getting too materialistic. Kirk spends the movie essentially telling him to chill out. Christian's only real function is to put up objections to Christmas for Kirk to knock down...
    • Strawman Has a Point: ...which makes no real sense, when one of Christian's objections is how they spend absurd amounts of money for trivial things that will be out of style in a few months and they don't need to begin with, versus spending even a fraction of that digging wells in drought-plagued regions of the world.
  • Totally Radical: Sobczynski calls the hip hop version of "Angels We Have Heard On High" in the film the whitest thing he'd ever heard in his entire life.
  • Trademark Favorite Food: Kirk loves his hot chocolate. Which apparently comes from an empty cup.
  • True Meaning of Christmas: An odd example. According to the film, the true meaning of Christmas is the birth of Jesus—but the oft-reviled materialism and commercialism and gluttony of secular Christmas celebrations are a fine way to celebrate that because they all reflect Jesus...somehow.
  • Uncle Tomfoolery: That black guy, who babbles about conspiracy theories... or his anti-LGBT activism... or something... Sadly, he's probably the only part of the film that isn't boring.
  • You Keep Using That Word: As mentioned under Insane Troll Logic, Cameron posits that buying material presents is equivalent to Jesus being God's material form. In Jesus' case, the word refers to Christ being a flesh-and-blood human—God being made a man. It is in no way like the modern use of materialism.

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Film/SavingChristmas