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Holiday Affair (1949)

Approved | | Comedy, Drama, Romance | 24 December 1949 (USA)
A young widow is romanced by a sales clerk whom she inadvertently got fired.

Director:

Don Hartman

Writers:

Isobel Lennart (screenplay), John D. Weaver (story "Christmas Gift")
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At breakfast, Jane announces that she and Ralph are getting married the next week. All Jane and Ralph want is a small wedding with the immediate family and no reception, because Jane's ... See full summary »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Robert Mitchum ... Steve Mason
Janet Leigh ... Connie Ennis
Wendell Corey ... Carl Davis
Gordon Gebert Gordon Gebert ... Timmy Ennis
Griff Barnett ... Mr. Ennis
Esther Dale ... Mrs. Ennis
Henry O'Neill ... Mr. Crowley
Harry Morgan ... Police Lieutenant (as Henry Morgan)
Larry J. Blake ... Plainclothesman
Helen Brown Helen Brown ... Emily
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Storyline

Just before Christmas, department store clerk Steve Mason meets big spending customer Connie Ennis, really a commercial spy. He unmasks her but lets her go, which gets him fired. They end up on a date, which doesn't sit well with Connie's steady suitor, Carl, but delights her son Timmy, who doesn't want Carl for a step-dad. Standard (if sweet) romantic complications follow. Written by Rod Crawford <puffinus@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Baby, you're just what I want for Christmas See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Romance

Certificate:

Approved | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

24 December 1949 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Christmas Gift See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

RKO Radio Pictures See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono (RCA Sound System)

Aspect Ratio:

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

Trivia

"Lux Radio Theater" broadcast a 60 minute radio adaptation of the movie on December 18, 1950 with Robert Mitchum and Gordon Gebert reprising their film roles. See more »

Goofs

When Connie brings the gift wrapped box with the train set from her bedroom to the living room, she places the box on a table next to a wall with the ribbon on the box parallel to that wall. In the next shot, the ribbon is perpendicular to the wall. See more »

Quotes

Connie Ennis: If you wish for things you can get, you're gonna be happy. If you wish for real big things, all you're gonna get is real big disappointments.
See more »

Connections

Remade as Holiday Affair (1996) See more »

Soundtracks

Auld Lang Syne
(uncredited)
Written by Robert Burns
See more »

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User Reviews

 
An undiscovered Christmas classic
20 June 2005 | by MartinHaferSee all my reviews

I love this film and am amazed that it seems to have been undiscovered among the many holiday movies we are blitzed with every Christmas season. I am actually VERY happy about this, as it is usually shown only about once or twice every year on cable and has not been ruined (at least for me) by over-saturation. "It's a Wonderful Life" is a movie that I no longer can stand because it was shown so many times during the 1980s--sometimes on two or three or more cable channels AT THE SAME TIME!! But, somehow lazy television programmers haven't yet done this to "A Holiday Affair". Hmmm,...maybe I should NOT review it so that it remains a hidden gem.

Robert Mitchum, Janet Leigh and Wendall Corey all star in this delightful little film about a train set and Christmas. Janet Leigh is a single mom (her husband having been killed in the war) and works as a comparison shopper (a spy who buys products and tests them out for competing stores). She buys a train for just this purpose but her adorable little son (Gordon Gebert) finds the very expensive train and assumes it's for him. Mitchum works at the store where this is purchased and correctly assumes she is a spy BUT because he feels sorry for her and does not turn her in, he is fired. Leigh feels sorry for him and invites him to Christmas dinner with her son and fiancé (Corey). Soon after arriving, Mitchum learns from the little boy that he thinks he's getting this great train that he found hidden in his mom's room (though this was bought for her job--the train she could afford to buy him was MUCH cheaper and less fancy). Mitchum decides to buy the kid that exact train (though he is out of work). When Leigh finds out, she is upset--Mitchum is practically a stranger and is out of work. When the boy hears this, he knows he can't keep the train and so he sneaks out of the house to return the train (although he looks to be only about 7 years-old). This scene of such a little boy wandering up the chain of command at the department store to return the train is priceless! What happens next is something you'll have to see for yourself. Although the eventual outcome is rather predictable, it arrives at this destination in such a classy and engaging way that you won't be disappointed.

This movie is perhaps one of the best examples of the magical films that Hollywood was capable of making in the 1940s. The dialog is among the best and the long string of coincidences make this film charming, not clichéd. Plus, it's a nice example of a film with a child star who acts a lot like a real kid--and he keeps his own among all the big-name stars! Give it a chance--it's sure to brighten up your holiday.


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