A Christmas Carol (1938)

"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

Trumbo Movie Review

Trumbo Movie Review

An entertaining film about sobering true events, this is the story of notorious screenwriter Dalton...

Goosebumps Movie Review

Goosebumps Movie Review

Mixing the action, comedy and horror from novelist R.L. Stein's books into a family-friendly package,...

Dad's Army Movie Review

Dad's Army Movie Review

The beloved 1970s British sit-com gets the big screen treatment, although there's been very little...

Spotlight Movie Review

Spotlight Movie Review

This film demonstrates that you don't need guns to make an exciting thriller. Based on...

13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi Movie Review

13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi Movie Review

Not the subtlest director working in Hollywood, Michael Bay brings his surging machismo to this...

Dirty Grandpa Movie Review

Dirty Grandpa Movie Review

There's nothing clever about this deliberately rude and vulgar comedy, but certain audiences will find...

The Big Short Movie Review

The Big Short Movie Review

Smart and snappy, this comedy is one of the scariest films of the year, using...

Advertisement
The 5th Wave Movie Review

The 5th Wave Movie Review

Also based on the first in a trilogy of post-apocalyptic teen novels, this thriller feels...

Ride Along 2 Movie Review

Ride Along 2 Movie Review

Ice Cube and Kevin Hart reteam for a sequel no one really asked for, following...

Room Movie Review

Room Movie Review

One of the most extraordinary films of the year, this drama cleverly weaves in events...

Creed Movie Review

Creed Movie Review

While this film is basically Rocky VII, it's also much more than that, and perhaps...

A Perfect Day Movie Review

A Perfect Day Movie Review

An irreverent comedy in the style of the original M.A.S.H., this wartime romp takes an...

Partisan Movie Review

Partisan Movie Review

With his feature debut, young Australian filmmaker Ariel Kleiman tells a creepy story about a...

The Revenant Movie Review

The Revenant Movie Review

A wrenching saga of survival and revenge, Alejandro G. Inarritu's new epic is just as...

The Hateful Eight Movie Review

The Hateful Eight Movie Review

Quentin Tarantino is a filmmaker who simply can't be ignored, especially when he lobs a...

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.