The Waltons (1971–1981)
8.7/10
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21 user 4 critic

The Homecoming: A Christmas Story 

On Christmas Eve 1933, the Waltons prepare for the holiday. However, John Walton, who was forced to take work in another part of the state, has not returned home yet, and his family are becoming increasingly worried.

Director:

Fielder Cook

Writers:

Earl Hamner Jr. (novel), Earl Hamner Jr. (screenplay)
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On Disc

at Amazon

Won 1 Golden Globe. Another 1 nomination. See more awards »

Photos

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Cast

Episode cast overview, first billed only:
Patricia Neal ... Olivia Walton
Richard Thomas ... John-Boy Walton
Edgar Bergen ... Grandpa Zebb Walton
Ellen Corby ... Esther Walton
Cleavon Little ... Hawthorne Dooley
Dorothy Stickney ... Emily Baldwin
Josephine Hutchinson ... Mamie Baldwin
William Windom ... Charlie Snead
Andrew Duggan ... John Walton
Woodrow Parfrey ... Ike Godsey
Judy Norton ... Mary Ellen Walton
Mary Beth McDonough ... Erin Walton (as Mary McDonough)
Kami Cotler ... Elizabeth Walton
Eric Scott ... Ben Walton
David W. Harper ... Jim-Bob Walton
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Storyline

The Walton family is about to celebrate another Christmas. It's during the '30s and the Depression. John Walton promised to be home soon but seems to be late. John-Boy tells his sibs about Christmas and all that stuff. When John hasn't showed for hours, Ma sends John-Boy out to find him. Will John ever get home to celebrate Christmas with his family? This movie spun off the TV series "The Waltons". Written by Dylan Self <robocoptng986127@aol.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Family | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for brief mild language

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

19 December 1971 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Homecoming: A Christmas Story See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

CBS See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This episode takes from December 24 to December 25, 1933. See more »

Goofs

In the beginning of the movie, when the children enter the barn with the cow, there is a shot from the floor up to the loft from where the children are throwing down hay. A brand new steel corrugated roof is clearly visible above them. See more »

Quotes

Olivia: What are we going to live on this coming week?
John: Love, Woman.
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Alternate Versions

The original TV showing had an introduction sequence before the film began. This introduction is featured on the newly released DVD version of the film. See more »

Connections

Followed by The Waltons: A Decade of the Waltons (1980) See more »

Soundtracks

Away in the Manger
Traditional lyrics, tune attributed variously to William J. Kirkpatrick (uncredited) or James Murray (uncredited)
Performed by Children Chorus
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
A Wonderful Christmas Family Film
25 December 2002 | by Saturday8pmSee all my reviews

I saw this as a kid and still feel I need to see it every Christmas. I group it with "A Christmas Carol", "The Grinch", "A Charlie Brown Christmas" and "It's A Wonderful Life" as Christmas movie essentials.

The acting is superbly done by seasoned pros and brilliant newcomers who give added depth to a well crafted script that tells the true story of a depression-era poor Baptist rural Virginia family awaiting its father to return home Christmas Eve. The story is simple and the movie never strays from its central theme, adding plenty of character developing touches that most folks can relate to. The Waltons are a real Baptist family dealing with the issues of the day, such as the economic meltdown of the '30s and bootlegging, and the timeless problems of family harmony, love, adolescence, pride, privacy, values, vocation choice and parental expectation.

The beautiful mountain scenery adds to the Christmas spirit that contrasts with the meager living the townspeople endure year after year. The Christmas tree, sleigh ride and church scenes are all treated with the respect that this humble family deserves and should warm even the coldest heart without getting overly sentimental. Plenty of Bible references to remind the viewer what Christmas is all about.

Cheers: Fine acting all around. Realistic portrayals. Wonderful scenery. A Currier and Ives looks without the empty sentimentality. Less Santa and more Jesus.

Caveats: May bore very young children.

My Rating: 9 out of 10 Stars!


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