A Christmas Story

Watch A Christmas Story

"A tribute to the original, traditional, one-hundred-percent, red-blooded, two-fisted, all-American Christmas."
  • PG
  • 1983
  • 1 hr 33 min
  • 7.9  (168,286)
  • 77

In the classic Christmas movie, A Christmas Story, we follow young Ralphie Parker (Peter Billingsley) as he navigates his holiday season in the 1940s. Ralphie is an average kid, with dreams of getting the ultimate Christmas gift - a Red Ryder BB gun - this year. The film is set against a snowy, small town backdrop, and viewers get up close with the Parker family, their friends and neighbours and their various holiday trials and tribulations. The movie is a heartwarming mix of childhood memories, humour, and holiday charm - woven together with a strong message of perseverance and the joy of family.

We first see Ralphie as he's making his way through the snow to school, bundled up and trying to avoid bullies. He has one track mind in these opening scenes - trying to remember the exact words he can use to convince his parents (Melinda Dillon and Darren McGavin) that he should have a BB gun. Aiding Ralphie in his mission is a radio show promoting the Red Ryder BB Gun, which he listens to religiously.

As the days move closer to Christmas, we see all the various characters in their own holiday experiences. Ralphie's younger brother Randy (Ian Petrella) is constantly bundled up in layers of clothes, the Old Man (as Ralphie's Dad is called) is obsessed with the light display he's got rigged up outside the house, and Mom is just trying to keep everyone under control. We also follow Ralphie to school, where his days are filled with dodgeball and learning about the dreaded C+ but mainly just thinking about his Red Ryder.

Throughout the film, we see Ralphie encounter one comic obstacle after another - from getting his tongue stuck on a flagpole to a disastrous trip to meet Santa Claus at the mall. His dad struggles to keep the boiler in the basement functioning, leading to a series of power outages and moments of hilarity.

But slowly and surely, the Christmas spirit moves into everyone's heart. Especially when Ralphie's dad gets his hands on an award in the mail shaped like a lamp, complete with a fishnet stocking leg. The major moments of the film take place over Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, and this is where we get the turning point in Ralphie's fortunes.

The Parker family goes to visit relatives for dinner on Christmas Eve, and while there, Ralphie's mother convinces him to try on the dreaded pink bunny suit from a relative as a joke. His family puts him through the wringer, laughing at him and taking photos, but it all ends up just a little bit heartwarming.

Back at home, the Old Man has one last trick up his sleeve that takes things from comic to touching. In a crucial moment, when all seems lost on the gun front, Ralphie's dad comes through and the ultimate Christmas dream comes true. As the family sits down to eat their big turkey dinner, Ralphie sits lovingly cradling his new BB gun, which he eventually does get to use to face off against some back alley bully friends.

A Christmas Story is a timeless Christmas classic - one that has become a part of the holiday canon for many families around the world. This movie reminds us of the magic and the hard work of the holiday season, and the importance of coming together as a family. With a heartwarming narrative supported by some truly hilarious moments, A Christmas Story is the perfect blend of nostalgia and comedy. Its message of perseverance and the importance of cherishing your loved ones brings joy to viewers of all ages.

A Christmas Story is a 1983 comedy with a runtime of 1 hour and 33 minutes. It has received mostly positive reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 7.9 and a MetaScore of 77.

A Christmas Story
Where to Watch A Christmas Story
A Christmas Story is available to watch, stream, download and buy on demand at Sling, Apple TV, Amazon, Google Play and Vudu. Some platforms allow you to rent A Christmas Story for a limited time or purchase the movie and download it to your device.
  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 33 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    7.9  (168,286)
  • Metascore