A Christmas Carol (1938)

"Very Good"

A Christmas Carol (1938) Review


For a film made in 1938, this A Christmas Carol has a lot going for it. In fact, it's probably the most underrated version of the classic Dickens story ever filmed.

Reginald Owen is a spot-on Scrooge, making like miserable for his devoted assistant Bob Cratchitt (Gene Lockhart). In this version of the story, Cratchitt is fired on Christmas Eve due to an ill-timed snowball, but Bob is so irrepressible that he blows his last shilling on delicious foodstuffs for his family, including the wee, crippled Tiny Tim (Terry Kilburn).

That night, a trio of celebrated ghosts arrive and show Scrooge the error of his miserable, stingy, cruel ways -- culminating in a visit to the future and his forgotten gravesite. Next morning, our man is cured, tossing out jobs, raises, and goodwill toward men.

At less than 70 minutes long (in keeping with the original material's status as a short story), the film is hardly complex. And that's fine. Here we see a story in a rather pure form -- full of drama and (surprisingly) humor. The special effects are even pretty good for the era.

Most viewers will still remember other versions of the film more readily, but this is one worth seeking out 'round holiday time.



Facts and Figures

Genre: Kids/Family

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 3.5 / 5

Cast & Crew

Director: Edwin L. Marin

Producer: Joseph L. Mankiewicz

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Manchester by the Sea Movie Review

Manchester by the Sea Movie Review

This may not be the cheeriest movie of the season, but it's so skilfully written,...

Live By Night Movie Review

Live By Night Movie Review

Ben Affleck launched his directing career 10 years ago with his film of Dennis Lehane's...

La La Land Movie Review

La La Land Movie Review

After storming awards season with Whiplash two years ago, writer-director Damien Chazelle returns with something...

Assassin's Creed Movie Review

Assassin's Creed Movie Review

Hopes were high that this film might finally crack the curse of movies based on...

Silence Movie Review

Silence Movie Review

Faith is a topic Martin Scorsese can't quite shake, courting controversy with complex films like...

A Monster Calls Movie Review

A Monster Calls Movie Review

A difficult movie to market, this isn't actually the BFG-style fantasy adventure it looks like....

Monster Trucks Movie Review

Monster Trucks Movie Review

Word has it that a 4-year-old came up with the idea for this unapologetically silly...

Advertisement
Collateral Beauty Movie Review

Collateral Beauty Movie Review

Dramas exploring the nature of death and the true meaning of life are always in...

Paterson Movie Review

Paterson Movie Review

Unpredictable filmmaker Jim Jarmusch ricochets from his artful vampire movie Only Lovers Left Alive into...

I, Daniel Blake Movie Review

I, Daniel Blake Movie Review

At 80 years old, British filmmaker Ken Loach won his second Cannes Film Festival with...

Why Him? Movie Review

Why Him? Movie Review

Writer-director John Hamburg continues to recycle the formula that made his first hit Meet the...

Passengers Movie Review

Passengers Movie Review

Anchored by the almost ridiculously engaging Chris Pratt and Jennifer Lawrence, this sci-fi movie travels...

Neruda Movie Review

Neruda Movie Review

Clever Chilean director Pablo Larrain (who also directed Natalie Portman's Jackie) takes on the Nobel-winning...

The Eagle Huntress Movie Review

The Eagle Huntress Movie Review

Narrated by Daisy Ridley (The Force Awakens), this documentary is one of the most gripping...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.