A Christmas Carol Reviews

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Super Reviewer
December 2, 2008
Alastair Sim's 1951 version has it's devotees,but many consider this 1938 version a favorite of one of the screen adaptations based on Charles Dickens' classic novel. One of the reasons why is for counting actress June Lockhart,the daughter of Gene Lockhart,who made her theatrical debut at the age of 12,as one of the children of Bob and Emily Cratchit(played by her real life parents Gene and Kathleen Lockhart). Acclaim British actor Reginald Owen stars as Ebenezer Scrooge,the Christmas-hating curmudgeon who finally gets into the spirit of the Holiday season.
Super Reviewer
November 22, 2010
This is film number 7 of 30, the first and original Christmas Carol. Thought I have seen many different versions of this film, this is the first time I have seen this edition, and I must say it's the best by far, old school black and white film. Scrooge is played as good as one can play that part, the ghost are not meant to be scary and there not. This version is an excellent family film that can be watched by all. 5 Stars
Mr Awesome
Super Reviewer
December 18, 2009
A story like this that has been made into countless film adaptations can be a little difficult to discern from all the others. When it comes down to it, all we really have to differentiate one Scrooge from another is the acting (and to a lesser extent, how the effects are handled) and just how many liberties the film-makers take with the original story by Charles Dickens. While a few liberties may have been taken in 1938's A Christmas Carol, the performances more than excuse this. Originally, Lionel Barrymore was meant to play Scrooge, reprising the role he had made famous through many radio productions throughout the 30s. When Barrymore had to back out of the role due to illness, Reginald Owen stepped in and the result is a memorable and iconic performance. The Lockhart family (Gene, Kathleen and June, for the first and only time they all appear in a film together) give us a sweet turn as the Cratchit family, and Barry MacKay as Scrooge's nephew Fred, is also quite good. If you're looking for an infusion of yuletide spirit, look no further.
Super Reviewer
½ April 16, 2007
Adequate film version of Dickens classic. Scrooge's transformation is presented as happening a little too quickly.
Super Reviewer
½ December 11, 2009
Clocking in at a short 69 minutes it's no surprise that this leaves out a few parts. What is surprising are the parts that have been left out. Most importantly, the character of Belle and Scrooge's evolution into the money loving, Christmas hater. This leaves out a lot of motivation for the character and a lot of explanation for the audience. Luckily this version of Dickens' classic tale adds some wonderful material not present elsewhere. The opening which sees Fred walking to Scrooge's workplace, has him encounter the Peter and Tim Cratchitt. This builds a relationship between Fred and Bob that carries on throughout the film and makes all the scnes more cohesive. It also brings Scrooge's worlds together. The performances are very good, even if there were one or two American accents sneaking in. A wonderful Christmas warmer.
Super Reviewer
February 26, 2007
At this point I think the movie is a little over rated. It's not as funny as everyone remembers it being.
Cameron W. Johnson
Super Reviewer
½ December 20, 2010
A lovely and passionate classic recreation of the legendary tale. It retains the compellingness of the story and holds very good acting, a smooth pacing, excellent effects for the time and many more pros. All characters are very strong, felt for and loveable, expressing human compassion and joy without exaggerating. Ultimately, the film is an exciting and entertaining masterpiece that will have you applauding with the biggest of smiles on your face.
Super Reviewer
October 15, 2010
One of the earlier film adaptations of Charles Dickens classic story, the Reginald Owen Carol is one of the better ones for capturing the 'spirit' of the story of the old miser who undergoes a dramatic transformation. Rendered in black and white, it has some excellent performances for its time, and the style of acting. It's a little over-the-top, but it's supposed to be a fantasy.

Owen is impressive as a curmudgeon-lite, and his spirit visitations are slightly different from versions you may have seen on TV. Likewise, much of the darker elements of the book have been pared away. The Cratchits are an appealing family, and have some good scenes, and Scrooge's nephew and role are likewise departures from the book verse.

Since it's in black-and-white, it really 'feels' like Victorian England, even though it's an MGM back-lot special. It features some good banter, and one of the better 'goose scenes' of the many versions that have been produced. It's a good-hearted, lighter weight 9and shorter) version than many, and well worth seeing to compare with more modern versions.
Super Reviewer
December 13, 2009
I liked how the story was told, but the characters were a little bit overdrawn so, rather than being only suggested, their features were thrust on our throat by force.
October 23, 2009
This is such a classic. I absolutely love this christmas carol. The tiny tim in this version is kind of funny. Whoever hasn't seen this must it. It's a really fantastic version.
July 30, 2008
The 1930s classic about a miserly old Scrooge who is so stingy with his money that he must dream about ghosts pointing the way to break out of it. Based on the Charles Dickens story. Updated for 1938, which was at the height of the Great Depression, and just prior to the World War 2, Now the movie has implications of the New Deal and Roosavelt, and his plan to "soak the rich", which with that context in mind, makes the story, set in London like the book, seem somehow appropriate for America too.
½ June 30, 2006
This feels oddly like a filmed theatrical version. Everything is very over-the-top. I suppose there's an aspect of the Christmas Carol story that is always over-the-top, but I wasn't terribly fond of this version, with the theatrical intoning of the lines and the dramatic switch in character without much transitioning. The Alistair Sims version triumphs quite a lot over this.
December 17, 2007
not my favorite, but maybe a more authentic version of the tale. better scrooges exist, but this one was warmer, lacking in the (now) expected over-dramatic acting.
i hated Tiny Tim. more accurately, i hated the actor playing him.
September 19, 2007
So far all the versions of this movie that I've seen is good. This is a good way to start Christmas.
½ September 21, 2007
This is the old, old one... but of course my mom bought like all of the versions, so yes i've seen this one. This one is actual my favorite one besides the disney and muppets one lol you can't beat the disney and muppets christmas carols, you just can't
April 4, 2007
No matter if it's a cartoon or a real movie version, i love this movie and i watch it every christmas with my sister
April 1, 2007
I watch it most every time it's on cable and I happen to tune in to it - that's the secret to my two star rating system.
½ January 30, 2007
The original black & white version is better to watch than the colorized version of this classic Christmas movie. While not my favorite version to watch and the supporting cast are just wonderful in their portrayal of their characters. The film's rather short running time keeps the action moving along briskly, with one famous & beloved episode after another coming alive before the viewer's eyes. I rank this version in fourth place behind Alastar Sim, George C. Scott and Patrick Stewart versions.
December 23, 2014
Ironically, I guess I go against the grain here in seeing this as more of a Hollywood picture, be it a lovely classic MGM production, gloss and all. I love old Hollywood and have been a student of film studies nearly my whole life, but where there are a couple primary supporting actors who do a fine job here - with Gene Lockhart's version of Bob Cratchit outshining everyone involved, Reginald Owen (Admiral Boom in "Mary Poppins"), although always a good character actor, is a bit too kitschy here as the lead (don't mean to step on any toes, but for those here who are raving about the overall performances, they must have seen a different film). Short, sweet and entertaining, but pretty much fluff, just the same. Nothing here to talk up, sadly. Stick with the '51 Brit version, which offers a mood and tone more suited to this Dickens tale. However, if it's between this and the minions of other versions over the years (especially the animated and TV ones), this one'll do. ESPECIALLY so if we're talking the strange and quirky Disney film with Jim Carrey (in fact, if one ignores ALL Carrey Christmas faire, the holiday tends to be much more satisfying - and is simple to do, since both the Grinch and the former film are simply poor remakes).
December 28, 2013
One of the greatest Christmas movies of all time
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