A Christmas Carol
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A Christmas Carol

Year:
Duration:
86 min | Germany:74 min (video version)
Genres:
Drama | Fantasy
IMDB rate:
8.1
Director:
Brian Desmond Hurst
Details
Country: UK
Release Date: 1951-12-02
Filming Locations: 8 Scandrett Street, London, England, UK
Cast
Actor
Character
Patrick Macnee
Patrick Macnee
A Christmas Carol
Ernest Thesiger
Ernest Thesiger
A Christmas Carol
Alastair Sim
Ebenezer Scrooge
Kathleen Harrison
Mrs. Dilber
Mervyn Johns
Bob Cratchit
Hermione Baddeley
Mrs. Cratchit
Michael Hordern
Jacob Marley
George Cole
Young Ebenezer Scrooge
John Charlesworth
Peter Cratchit
Francis De Wolff
Spirit of Christmas Present
Rona Anderson
Alice
Carol Marsh
Fan Scrooge
Brian Worth
Fred
Miles Malleson
Old Joe
Glyn Dearman
Tiny Tim
Michael Dolan
Spirit of Christmas Past
Olga Edwardes
Fred's Wife
Roddy Hughes
Fezziwig
Hattie Jacques
Mrs. Fezziwig
Eleanor Summerfield
Miss Flora
Louise Hampton
Laundress
Czeslaw Konarski
Spirit of Christmas Yet To Come
Eliot Makeham
Mr. Snedrig
Peter Bull
First Businessman, Narrator
Douglas Muir
Second Businessman
Noel Howlett
First Collector
Fred Johnson
Second Collector
Henry Hewitt
Mr. Rosehed
Hugh Dempster
Mr. Groper
David Hannaford
Boy Sent to Buy Turkey
Maire O'Neill
Alice's Patient
Richard Pearson
Mr. Tupper
Clifford Mollison
Dick Wilkins
Jack Warner
Mr. Jorkin
Theresa Derrington
Fred's Maid
Vi Kaley
Old Lady Sitting By Stove At The Charity Hospital (uncredited)
Moiya Kelly
Martha Cratchit (uncredited)
Lualle Kemp
Mary Cratchit (uncredited)
Catherine Leach
Belinda Cratchit (uncredited)
Tony Wager
Fezziwig's Lad (uncredited)
Did you know?
Trivia
Child actor Glynn Dearman (who played Tiny Tim) became a radio drama producer and, in 1990, produced 'A Christmas Carol' for the BBC. Dearman also had an unwitting cameo in the film 'Scrooged' as part of his role in the 1951 film is shown being televised in the house of the Cooley household (the equivalent of the Cratchit family).
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In the novella, the Spirit of Christmas Past carries an extinguisher, a small funnel which was used to put out candles. This was eliminated for the movie version, although the Spirit does appear more or less solid, depending on the scene, to correspond with the description in the book.
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Both Alistair Sim (as Scrooge) and Michael Hordern (as Marley) re prised their roles in a 1971 animated short but Hordern also appeared as Scrooge in a BBC drama in 1977.
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Goofs
From the day he buys Mr. Fezziwig's shop (which employs a very young Scrooge and Marley) until his retirement with embezzled funds (when those two are much older), Mr. Jorkin doesn't seem to age a day.
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When Scrooge walks into the room of his house and first meets the Ghost of Christmas Present, loud and boisterous laughter can be heard coming from the spirit. This is the kind of laughter that requires someone's mouth to be wide open, yet the spirit's mouth is mostly closed, with a toothy grin.
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Alice seems to age very little between the past and present scenes, compared to Scrooge. This could be to show the contrast between the two--she chose to stay on the "good" path and has a healthier spiritual condition, he turned to greed and belligerence and has prematurely aged.
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Quotes
Ebenezer: I'll send it to Bob Cratchit, and he shan't know who sent it. It's twice the size of Tiny Tim!
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Spirit of Christmas Present: My time with you is at an end, Ebenezer Scrooge. Will you profit from what I've shown you of the good in most men's hearts?
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Ebenezer: [to himself, laughing] A merry Christmas, Ebenezer! You old HUMBUG! Oh, and a happy new year! As if you deserved it!
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Faq
Q
What are some differences between this film and other film versions of a Christmas Carol?
A
There have been several filmed versions of a Christmas Carol, and all of them have their share of similarities and differences alike. This version is noteworthy for featuring a number of difference/additions/etc. from the source material, though fans and critics actually end to enjoy them. These are a few examples (list is not all-inclusive.)-Scrooge berates Bob Crachit for burning coal in some versions of the story, claiming that garments like a jacket are indefinite and defeat the purpose of having to burn and waste coal - no equivalent of this scene exists in this version of the story. Yet strangely, the quote at the end from Scrooge telling Crachit to run out and buy a new coal scuttle remains intact here.-Early in the film, some men approach Scrooge to have him donate money to help buy food for the poor, and he quickly dismisses them. Many versions of the story have him finding these men after his transformation, agreeing to pay a large sum to help them. There is no such "restitution" scene in this version.-In the original source material and most adaptations, Scrooge's old love is named Belle. In this version she is named Alice, though the character is more or less the same as in other adaptations despite the difference in name.-The versions of the story differ in Scrooge's old love and her post-Scrooge future. In this adaptation she is shown working with the poor.-Scrooge's sister dies in childbirth. The cause of her death in the original source material is never explained.-The Mr. Jorkin character is not in the original story, though his role in the story better explains Scrooge's transformation over time, as well as the birth of the Scrooge and Marley company.-The "Similes" game played at Fred's party in most versions of the story is not present in any shape or form in this film.-This film version has been described by one critic as "heavy on the Freudian sauce". The setup, approach and appearance of Marley's ghost is the stuff of nightmares. No other version comes so close to terrifying the viewer.
Q
What happened to Fred's father?
A
Fred's mother, Scrooge's sister Fan (Carol Marsh), died giving birth to him. Fred's father can be seen standing at the foot of her bed as she whispers her last words to her brother. It's assumed that Fred was raised by his father.
Q
Is it possible to read Dickens' story online?
A
Yes. The text to A Christmas Carol in Prose, Being a Ghost Story of Christmas can be found here. Dickens himself took the story from an original idea he first used in his novel The Pickwick Papers when he told how a gravedigger Gabriel Grub had his outlook changed by goblins who showed him the error of his ways.
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Photos from cast
Patrick Macnee Ernest Thesiger