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Christmas in July (1940)

Passed | | Comedy, Romance | 25 October 1940 (USA)
When the co-workers of an ambitious clerk trick him into thinking he has won $25,000 in a slogan contest, he begins to use the money to fulfill his dreams. What will happen when the ruse is discovered?

Director:

Preston Sturges

Writer:

Preston Sturges
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Dick Powell ... Jimmy MacDonald
Ellen Drew ... Betty Casey
Raymond Walburn ... Dr. Maxford
Alexander Carr Alexander Carr ... Mr. Shindel
William Demarest ... Mr. Bildocker
Ernest Truex ... Mr. Baxter
Franklin Pangborn ... Don Hartman - Radio Announcer
Rod Cameron ... Dick
Adrian Morris Adrian Morris ... Tom (as Michael Morris)
Harry Rosenthal Harry Rosenthal ... Harry
Georgia Caine ... Mrs. MacDonald
Ferike Boros ... Mrs. Schwartz
Torben Meyer ... Mr. Schmidt
Julius Tannen ... Mr. Zimmerman
Al Bridge ... Mr. Hillbeiner (as Alan Bridge)
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Storyline

An office clerk loves entering contests in the hopes of someday winning a fortune and marrying the girl he loves. His latest attempt is the Maxford House Coffee Slogan Contest. As a joke, some of his co-workers put together a fake telegram which says that he won the $25,000 grand prize. As a result, he gets a promotion, buys presents for all of his family and friends, and proposes to his girl. When the truth comes out, he's not prepared for the consequences. Written by Daniel Bubbeo <dbubbeo@cmp.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

HOTTER THAN A FIRECRACKER - MERRIER THAN CHRISTMAS! (original poster-all caps) See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Romance

Certificate:

Passed | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

25 October 1940 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A Cup of Coffee See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Paramount Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Mono (Western Electric Mirrophonic Recording)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Preston Sturges made a cameo appearance as one of the men listening to the radio while the announcer says "...first prize of $25,000." He has a pencil behind his right ear and is the leftmost man onscreen. The scene occurs within the first three minutes of the film. See more »

Quotes

Jimmy MacDonald: If you can't sleep, it isn't the coffee. It's the bunk.
See more »

Connections

Featured in The Telephone (1988) See more »

Soundtracks

When We're Along (Penthouse Serenade)
(1931)
Words & Music by Will Jason and Val Burton
Used as background music behind Dick Powell and Ellen Drew in rooftop scene, and later throughout the film.
See more »

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User Reviews

Enjoyable Sturges flick...
15 July 2002 | by cereal_11See all my reviews

This may be my favorite Preston Sturges film. It's as well written and well crafted as anything he made after it. Sturges had a knack for creating unique characters and throwing them into even more unique situations.

Jimmy MacDonald is absolutely determined to make money the easy way; by winning a contest. A few of his coworkers, aware of his desperation to win an upcoming contest, decide to send him a telegram in order to make him believe he's won the recent contest, along with the enormous cash reward. What begins as a cruel little joke (to find out how Jimmy would react to winning) becomes something much bigger. It wouldn't make sense for me to explain the plot any further; much of the enjoyment in watching the film comes from how it unpredictably unfolds.

"Christmas in July" is rather unusual in comparison to some of Sturges other movies, namely his two most famous films, "The Lady Eve" and "The Palm Beach Story". It contains more pathos and less sexual innuendos, but it never becomes cheap, manipulative melodrama. It's also quite short in comparison to his other movies, but it's all the better for it.


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