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In 1860, the stingy and cranky Ebenezer Scrooge that hates Christmas; loathes people and defends the decrease of the surplus of poor population runs his bank exploiting his employee Bob Cratchit and clients, giving a bitter treatment to his own nephew and acquaintances. However, in the Christmas Eve, he is visited by the doomed ghost of his former partner Jacob Marley that tells him that three spirits would visit him that night. The first one, the spirit of past Christmas, recalls his miserable youth when he lost his only love due to his greed; the spirit of the present Christmas shows him the poor situation of Bob's family and how joyful life may be; and the spirit of future Christmas shows his fate. Scrooge finds that life is good and time is too short and suddenly you are not there anymore, changing his behavior toward Christmas, Bob, his nephew and people in general. Written by
Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Although the music was composed by Leslie Bricusse and nominated for two Academy Awards, Bricusse could not write music. He would dictate lyrics and melody to music supervisor Ian Fraser who would transcribe and arrange them for Scrooge's score. Bricusse did so on many other movies to much acclaim. See more »
When young Ebenezer and Isabelle are on the horse-drawn carriage in the countryside (shortly after the Fezziwig ball), there is a white car crawling its way along a country lane in the far background, midway between the centre and right-hand side of the screen. See more »
A wonderful memorable adaptation - highly recommended!
Christmas films, like Christmas songs, are a hugely personal choice, and depend so much on childhood experience. But this is one film which does not lose it's charm, no matter how often I see it. The songs, sets and costumes are fantastic, the acting is inspired, and the musical scenes are beautifully choreographed. In fact, there is no other Christmas film, which has contributed so many songs to my Christmas repertoire! The fact that this version is an English production also helps considerably in the credibility department - the accents are authentic.
Aside from the scene in "hell", this film is admirably true to the spirit and content of Dicken's text, with some inevitable cuts which frankly, I didn't miss. More importantly, I have seen no other version which manages to combine the miserable qualities of Scrooge with the touches of wit and humour which Dickens so skillfully wrote with. Other versions of the film so often succeed at being dour, while failing to capture the joyous aspects of the story, and the humour Scrooge himself sometimes provides. Happily, this version Succeeds at both.
The 1951 version of the film, with Alastair Sim as Scrooge, is often touted as being the best. This may be where my age betrays me, but when I saw it recently, it left me feeling rather flat. Sim did a good job of appearing afraid of the ghosts, but where was his bitterness, skepticism and sarcastic wit? By contrast, Albert Finney's portrayal is a joy to watch - you cannot help but both love and hate the miserable old creature, which makes his transformation at the end all the more joyous.
The clever use of songs like "Father Christmas" and "Thank You Very Much" to convey very different sentiments at the end of the film than they do when first introduced in eaarlier scenes - marvelous!
Albert Finney, as the hilariously miserable Scrooge, singing "I hate People"
Alec Guinness as a truly original ghost of Jacob Marley - fantastic!
Kenneth More's Ghost of Christmas Present - what presence, what a costume!
Laurence Naismith as the exuberant Fezziwig - exactly as he should be, and a good dancer too!
Edith Evans (Elderly Ghost of Christmas Past), in response to Scrooge's "You don't look like a ghost", primly replying "Thank You!".
Mrs. Cratchhit's scream of shock when she realises who is delivering the enormous turkey to her door! I could watch it a hundred times!
...and too many others to mention. This movie was released on DVD this year - by all means see it!
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