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The Definitive "A Christmas Carol" Adaptation

Discussion in 'Movies' started by Chris Farmer, Dec 22, 2004.

  1. Chris Farmer

    Chris Farmer Well-Known Member

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    Alright, so there are an absolute gajillion of them (has any story been adapted into a movie more times?), but which rendition do you consider to be the best cinematic version of Dickens' Christmas classic?
     
  2. Patrick McCart

    Patrick McCart Well-Known Member

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    I actually consider the 1984 TV production (Starring George C. Scott) to be the best adaptation.

    It has the right blend of humor and darkness, as well as a wonderful performance by Scott. Not to mention the production values are excellent for a TV movie.

    ADD:

    I completely forgot to mention Mickey's Christmas Carol. While it's only a little under half an hour, it's a fantastic adaptation. I finally got around to watching it on the 2nd Mickey in Color "Treasures" set and I forgot how great it was.
     
  3. Adam Lenhardt

    Adam Lenhardt Well-Known Member

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    I think the Patrick Stewart one is the only one that truly lingers in despair. It doesn't make great viewing, but it's one of the most involving.

    My favorite, however, is "A Muppet Christmas Carol"[​IMG]
     
  4. ScottR

    ScottR Well-Known Member

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    Most Joyous: 1938 MGM Version
    Best Visual Look: Albert Finney Musical "Scrooge"
    Best Kids' Version: Muppet Christmas Carol
    Best Portrayal of Scrooge: 1951 Version
    Most Faithful: 1984 Scott Version

    ....I don't think there is a definitive one. It depends on what mood you are in...all take liberties with the story. If you want to watch the version most like the book, go with the 1984 version. If you are watching for the performance of the actor portraying Scrooge, go with the 1951 Sim Version. The 1938 version is very short, but full of the Christmas spirit, so to speak.
     
  5. Michael Reuben

    Michael Reuben Well-Known Member

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    The most faithful version I've ever seen is Patrick Stewart's one-man stage show, because it uses Dickens' actual text. The made-for-TV movie version is, sadly, a pale imitation. I've often wondered whether Stewart's performance (in which he plays all the parts) could be translated to film.

    My personal favorite is Bill Murray's Scrooged, which holds up surprisingly well.

    M.
     
  6. Ernest Rister

    Ernest Rister Well-Known Member

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    Top 5 Best of All Time

    5. Mr. Magoo's A Christmas Carol
    4. The Jetsons Christmas Carol
    3. The Flintstones Christmas Carol
    2. An All Dogs Go to Heaven Christmas Carol

    and the absolute best of all time...

    1....the version starring W. C. Fields as Scrooge, Paul Lynde as Bob Cratchit, Edith Bunker as Mrs. Cratchit, Humphrey Bogart as the Ghost of Christmas Past, Peter Falk as the Ghost of Christmas Present, Inspector Clouseau as the Ghost of Christmas Future, Richard Nixon as Jacob Marley, Truman Capote as Tiny Tim, Groucho Marx as Fezziwig, Johnny Carson as Fred, Jimmy Stewart as Scrooge's Boss, John Wayne and George Burns as the Solicitors, Jack Benny as the Boy in the Street, and more! I speak - of course - of that astounding achievement in human arts known simply as "Rich Little's A Christmas Carol"
     
  7. george kaplan

    george kaplan Well-Known Member

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    Favorites:

    Scrooge (1951)

    Scrooged

    Mickey's Christmas Carol


    I do think the most underrated is the 1938 version.
     
  8. RobertR

    RobertR Well-Known Member

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    My favorite is the 1970 musical version starring Albert Finney as Scrooge. Wonderful performances all around, and the songs give just the right mood all along the way.
     
  9. Steve Phillips

    Steve Phillips Well-Known Member

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    Hands down, the best two are SCROOGE/A CHRISTMAS CAROL from 1951 and A CHRISTMAS CAROL from 1984.

    I'll pretty much watch any version (don't like the cartoons though) but the worst one EVER is the recent musical version on NBC with Kelsey Grammer, the worst Scrooge performance of all time. Simply unwatchable.
     
  10. DeeF

    DeeF Well-Known Member

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    We've had this discussion over at my board,

    http://p069.ezboard.com/fsondheimand...icID=320.topic

    I think the best overall movie is Scrooge (1951), but I think George C. Scott is the best Scrooge. That 1984 TV movie is actually very good.

    I too love Mr. Magoo.
     
  11. MatthewLouwrens

    MatthewLouwrens Well-Known Member

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    Absolutely. Funny funny film, yet surprisingly moving at times (the guy that freezes to death), and quite scary. It's just perfectly executed. One of my favourite Christmas films, period.
     
  12. Casey Trowbridg

    Casey Trowbridg Well-Known Member

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    I can't say which is the definitive one haven't seen them all, but this is my favorite.
     
  13. Mark Oates

    Mark Oates Well-Known Member

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    Another vote for the 1951 Alistair Sim version. Honourable mention for the 1970 Albert Finney version and Bill Murray's updating of the story. For me, the Ghost of Data Past wrecks Patrick Stewart's version, but it's a valiant telling of the story. I like the sound of his one-man show version, which must have been something like Dickens' own readings of the tale.
     
  14. Lew Crippen

    Lew Crippen Well-Known Member

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    And another for the ’51, Alistair Sim version.
     
  15. Chris Farmer

    Chris Farmer Well-Known Member

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    Guess I really need to see the '51 version, and Scrooged should probably go on that list as well. I've seen the '70 musical, Mickey Mouse, and Muppet versions.
     
  16. FrancisP

    FrancisP Well-Known Member

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    Without a doubt, the 1984 version wins by a landslide. George C. Scott's powerful performance as Scrooge makes this the winner. From top to bottom, this is a top-notch cast. Throw in excellent production values and you have a winner.
     
  17. Stephen_L

    Stephen_L Well-Known Member

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    Gotta side with the George C. Scott 1984 version, and I've seen most of them. Scott created a realistic portrayal of Scrooge as a cold cynical man whose life is transformed. The lesser parts are impeccably cast and great effort was expended in fidelity to the book in dialogue and appearance. I most recall Angela Pleasance as the Ghost of Christmas Past; she was the most accurate embodyment of the spirit I've seen in film, neither young nor old, etherial with a fire burning over her head that Scrooge finally snuffs out.
     
  18. Chris

    Chris Well-Known Member

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    Ok, no definitives but love:

    Patrick Stewart's One Man Stage Show.. which is phenomenal to watch..

    Muppet's Christmas Carol is my favorite to watch with the kids, and has a lot of heart.

    The George C. Scott version is very good..

    I think this thread might be better focused by saying "What version of Christmas Carol to avoid? Because man, are there some stinkers..
     
  19. ScottR

    ScottR Well-Known Member

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    I own eight versions of the story on film, and I don't really care for Mr. Magoo or the Rankin/Bass effort "The Stingiest Man in Town." In fact, I think it is their weakest holiday special.
     
  20. TheLongshot

    TheLongshot Well-Known Member

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    I tend to like the "fun" versions of the story, so I usually go with "Muppet Christmas Carol" and "Scrooged".

    Jason
     

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