A CHRISTMAS STORY: The Great American Fourth of July and Other Disasters (1982)

Directed by Richard Barlett and written by Jean Shepherd, who also wrote the original stories that these were based on. You will probably know A Christmas Story, but Ralphie Parker had several adventures before and after that film.

James Broderick returns as The Old Man, Barbara Bolton is back as mom and Shepherd again plays the older Ralphie, who starts the story visiting South of the Border and buying fireworks. In the actual movie, he’s played by Matt Dillon and Jay Ine is Randy.

Ralphie is high school aged here and excited to meet his friend’s attractive cousin named Pamela, a date he eventually botches. That said, the main part of the story is all about his father’s obsession with fireworks and his mother’s chain letter that keeps wash rags coming to their house.

If A Christmas Story has its holiday, so does this. The only downer is the repeated reference to fireworks as dago bombs, but I guess it was the 1940s and that’s how people referred to Italians. It was how my grandmother did until her death a year or so ago, despite my dad being, yes, Italian.

You can watch this on YouTube.


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