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I've seen many versions of A CHRISTMAS CAROL and can find something good
about each of them. My least favorite version (of those I've watched) is
SCROOGED, because I find it too hyperkinetic and not all together. Even
that one has redeeming qualities.
EBBIE is something new and different. Not only is Dicken's
timely-for-all-times tale brought into contemporary times, but SCROOGE is
woman--and played by one of my favorite soap opera characters, Susan
All of the technical aspects (e.g. the way Jake Marley communicates
with God by cell-phone when dealing with getting Ebbie in the right
the way that the familiar death scene [once portrayed by a neglected
tombstone with Scrooge's name on it] is portrayed by the flat-line signal
sound of a heart monitor in a lonely hospital room) sends out the clear
message that this fine old Christmas tale hits home these days just as it
did in the mid 1800's.
This version of "A Christmas Carol" starring La Lucci as Ebenezer Scrooge (aka "Ebbie") is surprisingly well done and well acted. The movie is brought up to date by its setting; a department store rather than a moneylending house. The supporting cast does an excellent job in showing the true meaning of Christmas and how it is never too late to change your life. I scour the TV Guide and watch it every Christmas. Would someone please get this out on DVD?
Truly touching and wonderfully human update of the classic Dickens
tale... a memorable scene in the early part of the film (ghost of
Christmas Past)where a young Ebbie(Lucci at her most stunning) recalls
a troubling childhood incident involving a stray kitten is particularly
heartwarming. Lucci displays her full spectrum of talent portraying
Ebbie's transformation from young innocent to savvy (albeit
cold-hearted)business executive, and layers what might have been a
hackneyed performance with levels of complexity....her performance at
the film's finale gives new meaning to what could have quite simply
been just tripe.
Why is it taking so long to release this "classic" on DVD? Don't miss it!
Forget about Its A Wonderful Life and Miracle on 34th Street for a moment. This great film should also be traditional family fare at Christmas as well. Even though it was written over 150 years ago, Dicken's A Christmas Carol is still as topical as today's headlines because in this age of commercialism at Christmas we need to heed its message more then ever. With the exception of Sherlock Holmes and Shakespeare roles, I don't think there has ever been a part played by as many great actors as the role of Scrooge. Alastair Sim, Walter Matthau, James Whitmore, Jack Klugman, George C. Scott, Albert Finney and Patrick Stewart. Isn't it ironic that to me the best interpretation of Scrooge was done by a woman! Susan Lucci is superb in this challenging role. I am usually a puritan when it comes to updating classic tales, but this is brilliantly done here. Lucci makes you loathe her character and at the same time pity her. Watch the scene where she relives her sister's death or the one at the end where she sees herself dying alone and unloved and realizes what a wasted life of greed she has lived. She should have gotten an Emmy for this great performance. Two very fine character actors Wendy Crewson and Jeff DeMunn also shine as "Roberta" Cratchit and "Jake" Marley.
There have been many films and remakes of films of A Christmas Carole. Most have missed the mark, while a couple have been outstanding. This remake, which also updates the story - a thing that I normally hate to see done to a classic story, works, however. The story is great, the script is true to the tale, and the acting is above par for most made for TV Christmas movies. Changing the gender of "Ebbie" was risky, but it works all 'round, probably because Susan Lucci is able to pull off such a role. This version has become a Christmas favorite of many, including myself. Along with the Albert Finney version. And that is saying a lot. I highly recommend this as a Christmas movie for the entire family - and esp. for young girls.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
This is truly a good version of an age old story. A Christmas Carol is a classic that is given a new twist by seeing the main character as a female. As women are classified as more emotional this only adds to the warmth of the story. Watch with an open mind or you won't enjoy it at all. Susan Lucci is fine in this vehicle. It's rewarding to see Taran Noah Smith as someone other than the youngest son of Tim the Toolman Taylor. You get to see his truly great acting in this movie. This movie is yet another way to remember that life is for enjoying each other, not using others to reach an end. Watching this movie should bring you memories of your own Christmas past. Here's hoping that you enjoy Christmas as much as the main character did in her past.
I watched this movie last night on Lifetime and really enjoyed it. This is a classic tale that has been re-tooled for the modern audience. Whether you like Susan Lucci or the other actors is irrelevant as the focus should be on the story which is a great reminder that we all need to be kinder to one another every day and not just once a year. This movie is right up there with "The House Without A Christmas Tree" as one of my favorite holiday flicks. I thought Susan Lucci and the entire cast did an excellent job bringing this treasure to life. I hope that it will be released on DVD at some point so that it can be enjoyed by everyone. It is so easy to forget what is important in life and this film is a great wake-up call.
This is my favorite of all the adaptations of Dickens' "A Christmas Carol". The twist here is that Susan Lucci stars as Elizabeth Scrooge, the manager of Dobson's Department Store. It pretty much faithfully follows the original tale only in a modern day setting, and of course with the gender-switch. Lucci is in top-notch form, showcasing her wonderful versatility, as she plays the cold-as-ice, tough-as-nails part with just a touch of camp, displays a very touching performance as she is visited by the three ghosts and very believably portrays herself as a teenager! Jeffrey DeMunn gives a very nice and creepy turn as Jake Marley and the rest of the cast is in fine. The only thing hampering this production is the terrible casting of Taran Noah Smith who is cringe-worthy as Tiny Tim, but fortunately he is only on screen for a minimal amount of time. Fans of the soapy daytime diva will not want to miss this overlooked holiday jewel. And fans of Dickens classic should enjoy the refreshing yet respectful twist on an old classic.
Before Ms. Scrooge, there was this film, one of only two that I am
aware of with a female Scrooge.
Susan Lucci was just perfect in the role of Elizabeth (Ebbie) Scrooge, but it was the Christmas Ghosts that really stole the show.
George Kaczender (Christmas on Division Street) has another hit with this film that is based on Dickens' novel.
Wendy Crewson (Santa Clause, Santa Clause 2, The Santa Clause 3: The Escape Clause) plays Roberta 'Robbie' Cratchet, a single mom with two children, including Tiny Tim.
Jennifer Clement and Nicole Parker were fantastically cute as the Ghosts of Christmas Past. They had a "Dreamgirls" look at first, then switched to an "I Dream of Genie" look. It was certainly a different twist.
Lorena Gale (Premonition, Slither) was the Ghost of Christmas present and was so funny in that role.
Molly Parker from "Deadwood" was the sister/niece.
This was an interesting and light version that was really enjoyable.
I know there are a lot of bad reviews on this movie, but I really did like it. I recorded it onto a VHS tape and watch it at the beginning of every holiday season. However, my tape is going bad and I would buy it if I could find it being sold. It's just another form of the Christmas Carol - female style. People shouldn't be so hard on it - Made for TV movies are not going to be Oscar winners. It was no worse than any other Made for TV movie. It had a touching and wonderful ending - especially with the niece and with her assistant. I did not think the acting was all that bad. Plus, they added humor into it. If it comes on again, I plan to record it again since I cannot find it on sale anywhere.
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