MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Up 4,194 this week

A Christmas Carol (1938)

Passed  -  Drama | Family | Fantasy  -  16 December 1938 (USA)
7.5
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.5/10 from 3,310 users  
Reviews: 66 user | 22 critic

On Christmas Eve, an old miser named Ebenezer Scrooge is visited by the spirit of his former partner, Jacob Marley. The deceased partner was in his lifetime as mean and miserly as Scrooge ... See full summary »

Director:

Writers:

, (screen play)
Watch Trailer
0Check in
0Share...

Watch Now

From $2.99 on Amazon Instant Video

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 24 titles
created 03 Dec 2011
 
a list of 22 titles
created 11 Dec 2011
 
a list of 40 titles
created 18 Dec 2011
 
a list of 24 titles
created 13 Sep 2013
 
a list of 28 titles
created 21 Sep 2013
 

Related Items


Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: A Christmas Carol (1938)

A Christmas Carol (1938) on IMDb 7.5/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of A Christmas Carol.

User Polls

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Scrooge (1970)
Drama | Family | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

A musical retelling of Charles Dickens' classic Christmas tale.

Director: Ronald Neame
Stars: Albert Finney, Alec Guinness, Edith Evans
Animation | Drama | Family
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

An animated retelling of Charles Dickens' classic novel about a Victorian-era miser taken on a journey of self-redemption, courtesy of several mysterious Christmas apparitions.

Director: Robert Zemeckis
Stars: Jim Carrey, Gary Oldman, Colin Firth
A Carol Christmas (TV Movie 2003)
Family | Comedy | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.4/10 X  

A Corol Christmas follows the basic plot of "A Christmas Carol" by Charles Dickens, but the story has been modernized. The traditional "Scrooge" character is a talk show host named Carol (...

Director: Matthew Irmas
Stars: Tori Spelling, Dinah Manoff, William Shatner
Comedy | Drama | Family
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

When a nice old man who claims to be Santa Claus is institutionalized as insane, a young lawyer decides to defend him by arguing in court that he is the real thing.

Director: George Seaton
Stars: Edmund Gwenn, Maureen O'Hara, John Payne
A Christmas Romance (TV Movie 1994)
Comedy | Drama | Family
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

A widowed mother with financial woes comes to the aid of a bill collector who crashes his car in a snowstorm.

Director: Sheldon Larry
Stars: Olivia Newton-John, Gregory Harrison, Chloe Lattanzi
Comedy | Drama | Family
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

The Muppet characters tell their version of the classic tale of an old and bitter miser's redemption on Christmas Eve.

Director: Brian Henson
Stars: Michael Caine, Dave Goelz, Steve Whitmire
Family | Fantasy | Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8/10 X  

The classic Disney animated characters play the roles in this animated retelling of the Charles Dickens masterpiece.

Director: Burny Mattinson
Stars: Alan Young, Wayne Allwine, Hal Smith
A Christmas Carol (TV Movie 1984)
Comedy | Drama | Family
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

An old bitter miser who makes excuses for his uncaring nature learns real compassion when three ghosts visit him on Christmas Eve.

Director: Clive Donner
Stars: George C. Scott, Frank Finlay, Angela Pleasence
Certificate: Passed Drama | Family
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

An American boy turns out to be the long-lost heir of a British fortune. He is sent to live with the cold and unsentimental lord who oversees the trust.

Director: John Cromwell
Stars: Freddie Bartholomew, Dolores Costello, C. Aubrey Smith
Scrooge (1935)
Drama | Family | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

Scrooge, the ultimate Victorian miser, hasn't a good word for Christmas, though his impoverished clerk Cratchit and nephew Fred are full of holiday spirit. But in the night, Scrooge is ... See full summary »

Director: Henry Edwards
Stars: Seymour Hicks, Donald Calthrop, Robert Cochran
A Christmas Carol (TV Movie 2000)
Drama | Family | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

In this modern day adaptation of Charles Dickens classic novel, a mean loan shark is the subject of a haunting, attempting to make him see the error of his ways.

Director: Catherine Morshead
Stars: Ross Kemp, Warren Mitchell, Liz Smith
A Christmas Carol (TV Movie 1943)
Drama | Family | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.4/10 X  

An early experimental television broadcast of Dickens's famous novel.

Director: George Lowther
Stars: Lon Clark, Roger De Koven, Ralph Locke
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
...
Kathleen Lockhart ...
Terry Kilburn ...
Barry MacKay ...
Fred (as Barry Mackay)
Lynne Carver ...
Bess
...
Lionel Braham ...
...
D'Arcy Corrigan ...
...
Edit

Storyline

On Christmas Eve, an old miser named Ebenezer Scrooge is visited by the spirit of his former partner, Jacob Marley. The deceased partner was in his lifetime as mean and miserly as Scrooge is now and he warns him to change his ways or face the consequences in the afterlife. Scrooge dismisses the apparition but the first of the three ghosts, the Ghost of Christmas Past, visits as promised. Scrooge sees those events in his past life, both happy and sad, that forged his character. The second spirit, the Ghost of Christmas Present, shows him how many currently celebrate Christmas. The Ghost of Christmas yet to Come shows him how he will be remembered once he is gone. To his delight, the spirits complete their visits in one night giving him the opportunity to mend his ways. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Greater than "David Copperfield" !

Genres:

Drama | Family | Fantasy

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

16 December 1938 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

This was the only film in which Gene Lockhart appeared with his wife Kathleen Lockhart and their daughter June Lockhart. See more »

Goofs

Young Scrooge and Dick Wilkins talk to each other while closing up Fezziwig's warehouse, yet their lips do not move. See more »

Quotes

[Scrooge has come in after being visited by the ghosts]
Ebenezer Scrooge: Fred! My dear nephew! How are you?
Fred: Well who is this?
Ebenezer Scrooge: It's me! Your uncle Scrooge! Smile makes a difference, doesn't it?
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Curb Your Enthusiasm: The Bare Midriff (2009) See more »

Soundtracks

Galop
(uncredited)
from "Jeux d'enfants"
by Georges Bizet
Played as background music while Scrooge is shaving
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

One of the Great Christmas Movie of All-Time!
6 August 1999 | by (Cherry Hill, New Jersey) – See all my reviews

More that sixty years after it was made, MGM's 1938 version of "A Christmas Carol" still ranks as one of the best adaptations of the Dickens classic ever.

First, there's that terrific cast. Lionel Barrymore was to have played Ebeneezer Scrooge, when the accident that confined him to a wheelchair prevented it. Reginald Owen, whose career in US films alone spanned more than 40 years, was given the part, and, if not as vivid a Scrooge as Alistair Sim, he is more than up to the task. Terry Kilburn (The little boy who said "Goodbye, Mr. Chips!" the following year) goes perhaps a bit overboard with the cute stuff as Tiny Tim, but at least he tries. Gene and Kathleen Lockhart (And daughter June, making her film debut at 12) make as good a pair of Cratchits as you will ever see, with Gene Lockhart underplaying more than was usually his wont. Barry McKay and Lynne Carver (The latter perhaps best remembered as "Dr. Kildare's" girlfriend during the '40's) add just the right spirit as Scrooge's nephew, Fred, and his fiancee, respectively. And, speaking of spirits, there's Leo G. Carroll as probably the out-and-out spookiest Marley's Ghost there ever was, and Ann Rutherford (That's Polly Benedict to you "Andy Hardy" fans!) as probably the loveliest Ghost of Christmas Past.

Atmospherically, the movie is as comfortable and heartwarming as an old Christmas card. As a director, Edwin L. Marin was, frankly, a hack, and, as such, usually handed a lot of forgettable "B" properties at MGM. With "Christmas Carol," though, he redeems himself. One wonders, though, if executive producer Joseph L. Manckiewicz wasn't responsible for at least some of the directing chores, as well. Hugo Butler's screenplay captures the feel of it all perfectly, and Franz Waxman's score is one of his best.

A rare treat all around. Don't miss it. But do not, under any circumstances, see the colorized version. The black-and-white play of light and shadow in this film is essential to its' atmosphere.

Incidentally, there's a substantial article, including an interview with June Lockhart, on this film in the book "AMC Presents the Great Christmas Movies."


23 of 29 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
did anyone prefer this version to the 1951 version? silverlining731
A little TOO cheery an adaptation? angmc43
Film Location tadams5
Where's Belle? ytrewq321
Some interesting notables about Scrooge's sister Fran EyeDunno
When Will This Be Aired This Year? lindsey-j-russell
Discuss A Christmas Carol (1938) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?