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A Christmas Carol (1938)

Passed  -  Drama | Family | Fantasy  -  16 December 1938 (USA)
7.5
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Ratings: 7.5/10 from 3,288 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 »

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Cast

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

 »
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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
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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

When Scrooge is eating in the tavern on Christmas Eve, he is reading a book with the spine label "Bankers Book". Charles Dickens' depiction of this book is that it is Scrooge's property, possibly a ledger. Yet in the film, Scrooge stands, pays the innkeeper for the meal, and leaves - leaving the book behind him on the table. See more »

Quotes

Ebenezer Scrooge: [to Marley's ghost] We'll soon see how real you are.
[Calling out the window]
Ebenezer Scrooge: Watch! There's an intruder in my room!
Leader of watch: Right up, sir - law and order!
Jacob Marley's ghost: It was for your welfare that I made this visit, Ebenezer Scrooge.
[He disappears]
Leader of watch: [unable to find him] Your intruder seems to have extruded, if I may say so, sir.
Ebenezer Scrooge: He was here! He was a spirit!
Leader of watch: [laughing] Of course, sir! A fine night for spirits - of one form or another, sir!
See more »

Connections

Version of Scrooge (1923) See more »

Soundtracks

Adeste Fidelis (O Come All Ye Faithful)
(uncredited)
Music attributed to John Reading (16??)
English lyrics by Frederick Oakeley and John Francis Wade
Played on an organ and sung at church by Gene Lockhart, Terry Kilburn, Barry MacKay,
Lynne Carver, St. Luke's Episcopal Church Choristers and parishioners
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

My favorite
14 December 2003 | by (Azusa, CA) – See all my reviews

There's just something about this one that, while not close to being the most faithful it nonetheless remains my favorite of all the many film versions of Dicken's Christmas Carol.

I guess it's those old classic MGM production values. It's Gene Lockhart's sometimes cowed, sometimes impish, sometimes heroic & joy-filled Bob Cratchett.

And it's definitely the way Reginald Owen turns Scrooge around far earlier than the other productions. I get so tired of seeing that rotten old Scrooge stay rotten until ten minutes before the film ends, when, poof, he sees the light & is miraculously transformed form the meanest man in the world to the nicest. Here, Owen's Scrooge begins to turn fairly quick, and I enjoy that - it really makes him so much easier to root for.

For me, it's far and away the most entertaining version. Sit back for its brief 69 minutes, watch and enjoy.


9 of 11 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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A little TOO cheery an adaptation? angmc43
did anyone prefer this version to the 1951 version? silverlining731
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
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