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A Christmas Carol (1938)

Not Rated | | Drama, Family, Fantasy | 16 December 1938 (USA)
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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(novel), (screen play)
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Cast

Complete credited cast:
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Kathleen Lockhart ...
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Barry MacKay ...
Fred (as Barry Mackay)
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Lionel Braham ...
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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:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Details

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Language:

Release Date:

16 December 1938 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

(Western Electric Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Although he seemed much older, Reginald Owen was only 4 years older than Gene 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: Please let me stay!
Spirit of Christmas Present: Nonsense! You don't want to stay!
Ebenezer Scrooge: Yes, I do!
Spirit of Christmas Present: No! You don't like Christmas!
Ebenezer Scrooge: Yes! Yes I do! I like Christmas! I LOVE Christmas!
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Connections

Version of A Christmas Carol (1994) See more »

Soundtracks

Galop
(uncredited)
from "Jeux d'enfants"
by Georges Bizet
Played as background music while Scrooge is shaving
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

"What's Christmas without chestnuts?" and Christmas Carol
11 December 2002 | by (NYC) – See all my reviews

I would like to say that every version of Dickens' tale is excellent in its own way but that would include Henry Winkler's "American Christmas Carol" and "Mr Magoo's Christmas Carol". Of course, then there's Albert Finney's musical "Scrooge" - Thank you very much.

But, rather than quibble about which is the best version, I will say that Dickens' story is the best illustration of the Christmas essence. Religion and commercialism aside, Christmas is about giving to mankind to better yourself and Scrooge is the poster child of that sentiment.

Now, as to Reginald Owens' version of the tale, just a couple of quick points:

This film is lighter and brighter than the others. The Lockharts are almost "cartoonish" in their portrayals. There is a cuteness in this one that makes it a bit more fitting for small children than the Sim/Scott/Stewart versions. Nephew Fred(Barry MacKay)is infectiously good natured and a fitting opposite for Owens' mean, old Scrooge.

As to Reginald Owens, his meanness is nowhere near the other Scrooge's but his character fits the overall nature of the film. I just wish that they would have tried harder with his facial makeup. In some of the scenes, he looks an awful lot like the scarecrow in "Wizard of Oz".

This version may be "A Christmas Carol Lite" but it is very watchable and entertaining.

"God Bless Us, Everyone."


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