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Today’s Classic Pick: December 16

A Christmas Carol (1951): Ghosts visit a miser during the holidays to teach him the errors of his ways.  Dir.: Brian Desmond-Hurst  Cast: Alastair Sim, Kathleen Harrison, Jack Warner  86 min./8:30pm CDT/TCM

Simply the best version of Dickens’ short novel.  The additions are seamlessly Dickensian; the ghost story, vivid (and a little terrifying); the redemption, emotional and joyous.  My favorite Christmas movie. And Alastair Sim’s performance is one for the ages.

5 comments to Today’s Classic Pick: December 16

  • Scott M.

    The George C. Scott version was very good as well.Edward Woodward was a great GOCP.

  • Daniel Crandall

    I inherited a DVD of this version of “A Christmas Carol” from the woman who taught me what true love really means. I cracked open that copy this afternoon and read the liner notes, a brief essay by John Justin Whitney. In it he recognizes another Christmas classic, “It’s a Wonderful Life”. Here’s what Whitney wrote, bringing those two films together:

    “Watch [A Christmas Carol], taste every morsel and savor every bite! It is a feast for the heart. Where ‘It’s a Wonderful Life’ transforms a truly good man who already thinks only of others through a miraculous intervention that allows him to see what terrible things would have happened had his many good acts never occurred and thus reaffirms his commitment to life and saves him from bitterness, despair and suicide, ‘A Christmas Carol’ in contrast gives us just as hateful and diabolical a man as we could ever hope not to meet. A man who smugly has no regrets, no remorse, and feels no guilt for his absolutely cruel and selfish ways and it is only when he is finally forced to see what he has caused, and what his actions will cause in the future, does he realize that in order to ultimately save himself, and all those his life touches, from himself he must embrace goodness and actively participate in making the world a better place. His transformation into a man that is good and who is concerned for others is at the end truly a cause for joy and celebration. Both films – while now canonized as family classics – each contain a message, I believe, which is targeted specifically at adults, those among us who have a little Scrooge or George Bailey withing ourselves.”

  • Matt Helm

    Sal Mineo played Tiny Tim in this version.

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