8.3/10
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A Charlie Brown Christmas (1965)

TV Program
4:00 | TV Program
Depressed at the commercialism he sees around him, Charlie Brown tries to find a deeper meaning to Christmas.

Director:

Bill Melendez
Reviews
Won 1 Primetime Emmy. Another 1 win & 3 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Uncredited cast:
Ann Altieri Ann Altieri ... Frieda (voice) (uncredited)
Chris Doran Chris Doran ... Schroeder / Shermy (voice) (uncredited)
Sally Dryer Sally Dryer ... Violet (voice) (uncredited)
Bill Melendez ... Snoopy (voice) (uncredited)
Karen Mendelson Karen Mendelson ... Patty (voice) (uncredited)
Geoffrey Ornstein Geoffrey Ornstein ... Pig-Pen (voice) (uncredited)
Peter Robbins Peter Robbins ... Charlie Brown (voice) (uncredited)
Christopher Shea ... Linus Van Pelt (voice) (uncredited)
Cathy Steinberg Cathy Steinberg ... Sally Brown (voice) (uncredited)
Tracy Stratford ... Lucy Van Pelt (voice) (uncredited)
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Storyline

When Charlie Brown complains about the overwhelming materialism that he sees amongst everyone during the Christmas season, Lucy suggests that he become director of the school Christmas paegent. Charlie Brown accepts, but it proves to be a frustrating struggle. When an attempt to restore the proper spirit with a forlorn little fir Christmas tree fails, he needs Linus' help to learn what the real meaning of Christmas is. Written by Kenneth Chisholm <kchishol@execulink.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

That's what Christmas is all about, Charlie Brown! (2008 DVD re-release) See more »


Certificate:

TV-G | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The short was watched by over 15 million viewers when it first premiered in 1965. See more »

Goofs

When Lucy first changes the "out/real in" sign on her psychiatric help stand, the sign is next to the word "is." In some subsequent shots, the sign is next to the word "doctor." See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Charlie Brown: [Charlie Brown and Linus stop at a wall on their trip to the pond for ice skating] I think there must be something wrong with me, Linus. Christmas is coming, but I'm not happy. I don't feel the way I'm supposed to feel.
[begins to walk with Linus again]
Charlie Brown: I just don't understand Christmas, I guess. I like getting presents and sending Christmas cards and decorating trees and all that, but I'm still not happy. I always end up feeling depressed.
Linus Van Pelt: Charlie Brown, you're the only person I know ...
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Alternate Versions

In the original broadcast, Snoopy actually sings "Hark, The Herald Angels Sing" along with the others during the end credits. When the ending was edited to remove the Coca-Cola logo, Snoopy was re-drawn so that he only smiles and occasionally "howls" instead of singing. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Monkey in the Morning: #ThotAudit Taxing Boobs (2018) See more »

Soundtracks

Christmas Time Is Here
(uncredited)
Music by Vince Guaraldi
Lyrics by Lee Mendelson
Performed by the The Vince Guaraldi Trio and members of the choir of St. Paul's Episcopal Church, San Rafael, California
See more »

User Reviews

 
As spiritual as you will see come the next millennium
25 December 1999 | by VarlaamSee all my reviews

This morning I turned on the television to find something with just the right atmosphere for opening Christmas presents. But in the 500-channel universe, could I find the Queen, or the Pope, or anything? I could find practically anything but Christmas.

The most inappropriate programme on wasn't the infomercial for the miracle juicer, no, it was the annual Parade of Expensive Children's Merchandise direct from Disneyland, in case there were some kids left who hadn't coerced a Mickey, or Terk, or Pumbaa from their beleaguered parents. One of the French channels did have a service from Notre Dame in Paris which was the right sort of thing, with an actual church and choir, but it was entirely in French. But then I found "A Charlie Brown Christmas" on one of the stations.

Once upon a time, "Charlie Brown" was just a prelude for its television viewers, most of whom would be attending church closer to Christmas Day. Nowadays, it's probably more than just the prelude; it's likely to be the whole concert.

Thank goodness Charles Schulz and company did such a fine job of crafting this programme back in 1965. Thirty-five years later, Charlie Brown is still as earnest and sympathetic as ever. He was even decrying the commercialization of Christmas back then, decrying in the wilderness, it seems.

Vince Guaraldi normally gets a lot of credit for his music, but there is far more to the show than just that. It is extremely well-written with a lot of charming and funny lines. I particularly like Linus as "an innocent shepherd", but even Snoopy as a penguin is sure to get a big laugh.

But at the midway point in the programme, the tone changes from quality seasonal fun to something very sincere and deeply held. Linus delivers his heartfelt sermon from the pulpit (the school stage). The Peanuts gang renews its faith (in Charlie Brown, at the very least). The congregation assembled there together raises its collective voice in the recessional hymn "Hark the Herald Angels Sing" as we bid them farewell and take our leave. It is these parallels from the church service, I feel, that contribute to the strong emotion many of us experience whenever we view this small triumph of television programming.

Would I say that everything in the story conforms to a higher design conceived by Charles Schulz? I won't hazard a guess, but I do like to feel that he felt a little touch of divine inspiration with this one.


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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

9 December 1965 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

A Charlie Brown Christmas See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$150,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

DTS (DTS-HD Master Audio)| Mono (Westrex Recording System)| Dolby Digital (Mono)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

4:3
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