68 user 12 critic

One Magic Christmas (1985)

An angel must show a mother the true meaning of Christmas. It's not just presents and materialistic things, but the people she cares about.



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2 wins & 7 nominations. See more awards »




Cast overview, first billed only:
... Ginny Grainger
... Jack Grainger
... Gideon
... Caleb Grainger
... Abbie Grainger (as Elizabeth Harnois)
Robbie Magwood ... Cal Grainger
... Betty
... Eddie
... Harry Dickens
... Santa Claus
... Molly Monaghan
... Frank Crump
... Herbie Conklin
Joy Thompson ... Mrs. Monaghan (as Joy Thompson-Allen)
... Mr. Noonan


Gideon, a Christmas angel, is sent, by Santa, to help Ginny Grainger. Ginny is a cynic, and she hates Christmas. She and her family (husband, Jack and two kids, Cal and Abbie) have fallen on hard times, making it even harder to believe in anything that can't be seen. With help from Abbie, and a trip to see Santa Claus himself, can Gideon find a way to make Ginny believe again? Written by jwhale9382

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Miracles do happen! See more »


Family | Fantasy


G | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:

Official site




Release Date:

22 November 1985 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Czarodziejskie Boze Narodzenie  »

Filming Locations:



Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$2,662,241, 24 November 1985, Wide Release

Gross USA:

See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


Film debut of Sarah Polley See more »


When Mrs. Santa Claus opens the door to Abbie, from the back her hair is a markedly different color and texture to how it is from the front (and in all subsequent shots). The back shot was obviously filmed with a stand-in wearing a wig. See more »


Abbie Grainger: Gideon can make it so Dad's not dead any more!
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Referenced in A Night at the Movies: Merry Christmas! (2011) See more »


Lost In The Stars
Words by Maxwell Anderson
Music by Kurt Weill (as Kurt Wiell)
Chappell & Co., Inc. and Richmond Organization
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User Reviews

Best contemporary Christmas movie!
18 December 2004 | by See all my reviews

I've been watching this movie every Christmas since it first appeared on CBC in the '80s, and I have to say, I spend most of the movie misty-eyed. In this familiar story of a woman who has lost the Christmas spirit and rediscovers it through being shown how fortunate she is, there are several excellent performances

and a strong feeling of magic throughout.

Mary Steenburgen, who plays Ginnie Grainger, the woman who has lost the

Christmas spirit, undergoes an amazing transformation and some of the most

heart-wrenching moments I've seen on film. Harry Dean Stanton, as the angel

Gideon, plays his part with sensitivity, and Gary Basaraba is excellent as Jack, Ginnie's husband. Abbie, the six-year old daughter of the main character, steals the show, however. She never seems to be acting, and carries the innocence of childhood and the magic of Christmas with her. Keep an eye out for a very

young Sarah Polley as Molly Monaghan, and veteran Canadian actor Jan

Rubes as the best Santa Claus on film to date, if only for his amazing costume.

Keep a box of tissues on hand when you watch this movie! It demonstrates that a movie can be magical without overwhelming special effects, and that a

Christmas movie can be sentimental without being schmaltzy.

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