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A Christmas Carol (1984)

TV Movie  -   -  Comedy | Drama | Family  -  17 December 1984 (USA)
7.9
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Ratings: 7.9/10 from 6,317 users  
Reviews: 139 user | 16 critic

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

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Title: A Christmas Carol (TV Movie 1984)

A Christmas Carol (TV Movie 1984) on IMDb 7.9/10

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Nominated for 1 Primetime Emmy. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Angela Pleasence ...
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Michael Carter ...
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Anthony Walters ...
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Fred Holywell / Narrator
Caroline Langrishe ...
Lucy Gutteridge ...
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Silas Scrooge
Mark Strickson ...
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Fan
Timothy Bateson ...
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Storyline

Made for television version of the Charles Dickens classic of the same name. Ebenezer Scrooge is a hard-nosed, single-minded businessman in Victorian London. He has disowned his only living relative - his nephew Fred - and generally treats everyone he meets with extreme contempt. He hates Christmas, only cares about making money and only gives his clerk, Bob Cratchit, the day off. However, he is taught the true meaning and spirit of Christmas by three ghosts who show him his own past and present. He is also shown what the future holds for him if he doesn't change his behavior. Written by Jason Ihle <jrihl@conncoll.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Rediscover the Joy of Christmas Spirit! See more »


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

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Language:

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Release Date:

17 December 1984 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Christmas Carol  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This is, perhaps, the only version of ACC in which Scrooge wears dress-slacks, a dress-shirt and a vest (with an Alistair Cooke-type smoking jacket)...instead of merely his nightgown, slippers and cap. (Rumor has it that George C. Scott openly reeled at the very thought of portraying Scrooge under such conditions...especially in mid-winter England.) In the book Scrooge is wearing his shirt, pants, vest, a dressing gown and slippers. Scott's clothing is very close to the book. See more »

Goofs

When Tiny Tim comes to meet his father, Bob Cratchit at 7:00pm on Christmas Eve at his place of work, it is still light outside, when it should be dark. See more »

Quotes

Fred Holywell: Uncle Ebenezer, this is my wife Janet. Janet this is Uncle Ebenezer.
Janet Holywell: It's a pleasure.
Ebenezer Scrooge: More like a surprise wouldn't you say?
Janet Holywell: Well that too.
Fred Holywell: That's quite true. Quite honestly it is a surprise. At least yesterday, you made it quite clear, it seemed to me at least, that you had no intention of accepting my annual invitation.
Ebenezer Scrooge: I made other things clear too didn't I, Fred? That Christmas was a humbug - a waste of time and money. A false and commercial festival, devoutly to be ignored.
Fred Holywell: Yes, basically ...
[...]
See more »


Soundtracks

I Saw Three Ships
(uncredited)
Written by Traditional
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
The Definitive "Christmas Carol"
19 December 2000 | by (Salem, Oregon) – See all my reviews

This 1984 version of the Dickens' classic `A Christmas Carol,' directed by Clive Donner, stars George C. Scott as Ebenezer Scrooge. By this time around, the challenge for the filmmaker was to take such familiar material and make it seem fresh and new again; and, happily to say, with this film Donner not only met the challenge but surpassed any expectations anyone might have had for it. He tells the story with precision and an eye to detail, and extracts performances from his actors that are nothing less than superlative, especially Scott. One could argue that the definitive portrayal of Scrooge-- one of the best known characters in literary fiction, ever-- was created by Alastair Sim in the 1951 film; but I think with his performance here, Scott has now achieved that distinction. There is such a purity and honesty in his Scrooge that it becomes difficult to even consider anyone else in the role once you've seen Scott do it; simply put, he IS Scrooge. And what a tribute it is to such a gifted actor; to be able to take such a well known figure and make it so uniquely his own is quite miraculous. It is truly a joy to see an actor ply his trade so well, to be able to make a character so real, from every word he utters down to the finest expression of his face, and to make it all ring so true. It's a study in perfection.

The other members of the cast are splendid as well, but then again they have to be in order to maintain the integrity of Scott's performance; and they do. Frank Finlay is the Ghost of Jacob Marley; a notable turn, though not as memorable, perhaps, as the one by Alec Guinness (as Marley) in the film, `Scrooge.' Angela Pleasence is a welcome visage as the Spirit of Christmas Past; Edward Woodward, grand and boisterous, and altogether convincing as the Spirit of Christmas Present; and Michael Carter, grim and menacing as the Spirit of Christmas Yet To Come.

David Warner hits just the right mark with his Bob Cratchit, bringing a sincerity to the role that measures up well to the standard of quality set by Scott's Scrooge, and Susannah York fares just as well as Mrs. Cratchit. The real gem to be found here, though, is the performance of young Anthony Walters as Tiny Tim; it's heartfelt without ever becoming maudlin, and simply one of the best interpretations-- and the most real-- ever presented on film.

The excellent supporting cast includes Roger Rees (Fred Holywell, and also the narrator of the film), Caroline Langrishe (Janet Holywell), Lucy Gutteridge (Belle), Michael Gough (Mr. Poole) and Joanne Whalley (Fan). A flawless presentation, this version of `A Christmas Carol' sets the standard against which all others must be gauged; no matter how many versions you may have seen, watching this one is like seeing it for the first time ever. And forever after, whenever you think of Scrooge, the image your mind will conjure up will be that of George C. Scott. A thoroughly entertaining and satisfying experience, this film demands a place in the annual schedule of the holiday festivities of every home. I rate this one 10/10.


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