Where to Eat and What Else To Do on Christmas Day
Once Santa's come and gone, what's left to do on today on Christmas? Here are some ideas.
In case your dinner plans fall apart, round up the family and indulge in Christmas Day Brunch, 10:30 a.m.-2 p.m., Peabody Little Rock. Capriccio Grill Italian Steakhouse will offer a wide selection of dishes from prime rib of beef to honey-glazed ham and roasted pork loin. Breakfast items, seafood (including poached salmon an Cajun-boiled shrimp) and desserts will also be available. Price is $44.95 for adults and $15.95 for children ages 6 to 11. Children ages 5 and under eat free. Complimentary valet parking will be provided. Call (501) 399-8062 for reservations.
Or you could enjoy Christmas Day dinner on the Arkansas Queen Riverboat. Boarding (at 100 Riverfront Park Drive, North Little Rock) will be at 12:30 p.m. and the cruise will be from 1-3 p.m. Admission is $43.59 for adults, $27.09 for children ages 3-12. Call (501) 372-5777.
Afterward, go to the movies. New in theaters this week:
Les Miserables (PG-13) In 19th-century France, Jean Valjean, who for decades has been hunted by the ruthless policeman Javert after he breaks parole, agrees to care for factory worker Fantine's daughter, Cosette. The fateful decision changes their lives forever. Directed by Tom Hooper.
Django Unchained (R) With the help of his mentor, a slave-turned-bounty hunter (Jamie Foxx) sets out to rescue his wife from a brutal Mississippi plantation owner, directed by Quentin Tarantino.
Parental Guidance (PG) Artie (Billy Crystal) and Diane (Bette Midler) agree to look after their three grandkids when their type-A helicopter parents need to leave town for work. Problems arise when the kids' 21st-century behaviors collide with Artie and Diane's old-school methods. With Marisa Tomei; directed by Andy Fickman.
Don't feel like leaving the house? Skip It's A Wonderful Life and show your holiday guests one (or more) of these unusual Christmas-themed films, available on DVD.
Bad Santa (2003; rated R for language, sexual content) Those of us who love this ultra-dark comedy know we're different from everyone else. It concerns con man and miserable human being Willie (Billy Bob Thornton) and his partner (Tony Cox) who pose as Santa and his Little Helper to rob department stores on Christmas Eve. Problems arise when Willie -- much to his surprise -- befriends a troubled kid. With Bernie Mac, Lauren Graham; directed by Terry Zwigoff.
The Ice Harvest (2005, rated R for violence, nudity, sexuality, language) Not Billy Bob Thornton's best movie, but fairly watchable, this dark noir, set on a booze-soaked Christmas Eve, concerns sleazy Wichita mob lawyer Charlie Arglist (John Cusack) and his unsavory associate Vic Cavanaugh (Thornton), who have just embezzled $2 million from a Kansas City crime boss (Randy Quaid). But, as is so often the case with such swindles, there's a price to pay. Directed by Harold Ramis.
Gremlins (1984; rated PG-13 for violence) An entertaining mix of horror and comedy in which a boy (Zach Galligan) accidentally liberates a mass of nastily mischievous little green monsters on a small town during Christmas. With Phoebe Cates, Hoyt Axton, Little Rock's Judge Reinhold, and Corey Feldman; directed by Joe Dante.
Reindeer Games (2000; rated R for violence, sexuality, language) You might have missed this tangy thriller in theaters as it's a Christmas heist movie that came out in February and therefore tanked at the box office. It's about an ex-con (Ben Affleck) who assumes his dead cellmate's identity and gets involved in a scheme to rob a casino. With Charlize Theron, Gary Sinise, Dennis Farina, and Donal Logue; directed by John Frankenheimer.
The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993; rated PG for scary images) This odd, irreverent animated musical, written by Tim Burton, follows the misguided efforts by Jack Skellington, who is to Halloween what Santa Claus is to late December, to inject excitement into his life after yet another boring preparation for fright night in Halloweentown by taking over Christmastown. With the voices of Danny Elfman, Catherine O'Hara, Paul Reubens; directed by Henry Selick.