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Santa Claus (1898)

6.5
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Ratings: 6.5/10 from 329 users  
Reviews: 6 user | 4 critic

"In this picture you see Santa Claus enter the room from the fireplace and proceed to trim the tree. He then fills the stockings that were previously hung on the mantle by the children. ... See full summary »

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Title: Santa Claus (1898)

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Cast

Credited cast:
Laura Bayley ...
Dorothy Smith ...
Harold Smith ...
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Storyline

"In this picture you see Santa Claus enter the room from the fireplace and proceed to trim the tree. He then fills the stockings that were previously hung on the mantle by the children. After walking backward and surveying his work, he suddenly darts at the fireplace and disappears up the chimney. This film surprises everyone, and leaves them to wonder how old Kris disappears." Written by Lubin Films (1907)

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Genres:

Short | Family | Fantasy

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Release Date:

September 1898 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

Mikulás  »

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Featured in The Great Christmas Movies (1998) See more »

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User Reviews

 
A Fascinating Glimpse Of 19th Century Film-Making
29 December 2008 | by (Niagara Region, Ontario, Canada) – See all my reviews

This interesting look at a vision of Santa Claus from the late nineteenth century is notable for a number of reasons. First is obviously its age. I think it's the first piece of movie-making from the nineteenth century that I've ever seen, and the quality and clarity was quite surprising, given that age. There's some decent enough use of special effects (extremely primitive by today's standards, but surprisingly effective when placed in their historical context.) The image of Santa Claus gives us a bit of a picture of how the jolly old man has evolved over the years. In this vignette, he has the traditional white beard but his clothing appears to be more of a robe than a suit, and he's very thin compared to the image of Santa we have today. In a little over a minute, filmmaker G.A. Smith was able to tell us the story of a Christmas Eve when two young children are put to bed. It seems to me that the first appearance of Santa is meant to be a dream that the children are having, as Santa appears hovering over them in the corner of the screen. As the children dream of Santa, he then comes through the darkness and into their bedroom to leave them with candy. It's really a delightful little film, fascinating from a historical point of view. I find it difficult to rate, because I really have nothing to compare it to from that era, but I'd say somewhere around 8/10 seems right.


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