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  • Christmas Carol (1951) (Spec B&W Col Dol) [DVD] [NTSC]
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Christmas Carol (1951) (Spec B&W Col Dol) [DVD] [NTSC]


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Product details

  • Actors: Alastair Sim, Jack Warner, Kathleen Harrison, Mervyn Johns, Hermione Baddeley
  • Directors: Brian Desmond Hurst
  • Writers: Charles Dickens, Noel Langley
  • Producers: Brian Desmond Hurst, Stanley Haynes
  • Format: Black & White, Colour, Dolby, DVD-Video, NTSC, Special Edition
  • Language: English
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 4:3 - 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: To be announced
  • Studio: Vci Video
  • DVD Release Date: 28 Oct. 1998
  • Run Time: 86 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (281 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00000F168
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 100,317 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Reviews

Review

...as satisfying a yuletide indulgence as a good Christmas pudding...Alastair Sim...is wonderful. --The Sunday Times

About the Director

Hailing from East Belfast, Northern Ireland, Hans Moore Hawthorn Hurst was a linen worker before joining the army during World War I. He was a private in the Royal Irish Rifles, and survived the slaughter at the disastrous Gallipoli landing in Turkey. He changed his name to Brian Desmond Hurst. On his return home he became disturbed by the continuing troubles in Belfast and left for Canada to train as an artist. He became part of the artistic and bohemian; movement and moved in those circles in Paris and New York. He eventually wound up in Hollywood, where he studied the craft of filmmaking under the tutelage of famed director John Ford. The two became extremely close--Hurst even appeared as an extra in Ford's Hangman's House (1928) along with another of Ford's good friends, John Wayne--and often referred to each other as cousin, although they were not related by blood, and remained the best of friends up until Ford's death in 1973. Hurst returned to Europe soon afterward, and made what is generally considered to be Ireland's first sound film, Irish Hearts (1934). Two years later he made a film that caused the authorities in his native Northern Ireland to forbid it from being shown there: Ourselves Alone (1936), a story of the 1921 Irish rebellion against British rule. Hurst ran into censorship troubles again with his adaptation of Edgar Allan Poe's The Tell-Tale Heart (1934), which was banned in many areas of Great Britain for being too horrible for public exhibition. These incidents didn't deter Hurst from making controversial films, however. He turned out the dark On the Night of the Fire (1939) in 1939, regarded as one of the first British noir films. During the war Hurst made such films as Dangerous Moonlight (1941), a well-regarded story of an American newswoman in England who falls in love with an exiled Polish pianist who wants to return to his country to fight the Nazis (the film also popularized the musical number Warsaw Concerto. After the war he made what he regarded as his favorite film, Theirs Is the Glory (1946), about the disastrous British-American wartime operation at Arnhem in Holland, which became Britain's biggest-grossing film for almost a decade. He returned to his Irish roots in two other films, Hungry Hill (1947) and John Millington Synge's Playboy of the Western World (1963) (which was also his final picture). However, the film he is most famous for is Scrooge (1951), considered by critics and audiences alike to be the definitive version of Charles Dickens' classic novel _A Christmas Carol

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

115 of 117 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 24 Nov. 2000
Format: VHS Tape Verified Purchase
I have loved this film since I first saw it on television as a child, through worn out home video to a budget release some years ago.
I dragged a close friend along to see it last year when it returned to the cinema . A step that is always a risk in that one fears that it will not live up to expectations . I was thrilled that he was as moved by it as I was and continue to be.
Sim is faultless, the supporting cast superb and if you do not cry either at the death of Scrooge's sister ,feared death of Tiny Tim or the reconciliation then you are cold indeed!
Buy it in its spanking new remastering and you will have a treat that can be watched over and over again with renewed and increasing pleasure
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64 of 65 people found the following review helpful By Mr. Ross Maynard VINE VOICE on 18 Jan. 2009
Format: DVD
Made in 1951 on a low budget, Scrooge remains one of the best film versions of the "Christmas Carol" tale. This is partly due to Alistair Sim's moving performance, and also the fact that this version gives more backstory than others, explaining how Scrooge got the way he is. George Cole gives a fine performance as the young Scrooge and Jack Warner is clearly enjoying himself as the corrupt Mr Jorking. The film also boasts the radiant Carol Marsh as Scrooge's sister (with too little screen time but see her at her best in "Brighton Rock"), Patrick McNee, William Horden and (eye's peeled) Hattie Jacques as Mrs Fezziwig - with about 10 seconds of screen time.

This remastering does a very good job of improving the picture and sound - pretty low quality film stock was used (the film was made when post-war rationing was still in full force). This set also features a colourised version of the film which is well done (though the B&W version wins for picture quality and atmosphere). There are also two early silent film versions of the tale, two radio versions, and a surprisingly uninteresting interview with George Cole.

Often the film is very very moving - probably the most moving version of the tale; though at other times it does stoop to 1950's sentimentality (Bob Cratchit's family are a bit too sickly sweet). Overall it is a fantastic set and a must if you want a really atmospheric version of the tale.
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68 of 69 people found the following review helpful By Robert Lough on 1 Oct. 2000
Format: DVD
In my opinion this is THE definitive big screen version of Charles Dickens 'A Christmas Carol'. The acting is brilliant, and the dialogue is very convincing. Being shot in black and white gives this film the right mood and feel. I bought this DVD when it was released last year and if you did not buy it then, then I suggest you buy it now. It is the perfect Christmas film.
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43 of 44 people found the following review helpful By C. Kingswell on 5 Jun. 2008
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Anyone who still doesn't know the story of 'A Christmas Carol' should be boiled in his own pudding. Alastair Sim was the definitive Scrooge and always will be. But look no further. This is the 2-dvd set you have been waiting for. Everything has been restored, and not only does the set include the black and white and colorised versions but also a widescreen version which has been enhanced for widescreen monitors. For good measure, there is the 1935 film with Sir Seymour Hicks, although this copy looks old by comparison.
Extras include:
audio commentary by Marcus Hearn and George Cole,
George Cole remembers Alastair Sim,
Richard Gordon remembers George Minter and Renown Pictures,
before and after restoration comparison,
original American and British theatrical trailers.
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By E. Brooker on 28 Oct. 2009
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I saw the original version, as a child, when it was released in the cinema and it has always stayed with me as the best version on film.I am not happy with the "colourised" version as I believe the Black & White is more atmospheric - but I am VERY biased.
My youngest son also got hooked on it from an early age -he is now 38 - and is still hooked so it does span generations.
I am not sure how a new generation coming to it now in B&W for the first time would react but try it near Christmas Time with the room darkened and you may be suprised
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55 of 57 people found the following review helpful By Kurt A. Johnson on 28 Jun. 2005
Format: DVD
In 1951, veteran actor Alistair Sim (1900-76) starred in this black-and-white screen adaptation of Charles Dickens' classic book, A Christmas Carol. In 2002, Vci Home Video took recently discovered 35-mm original negatives, and digitally remastered them. This DVD contains both a black-and-white version (as it would have looked back in 1951!), and a colorized version, for those who prefer things in color. Also included is an old 1944 Max Fleisher cartoon of Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer, and a nice introduction by Patrick McNee (who appeared in the movie as a young Jacob Marley).
This is a great movie, with great acting, and a very well produced production, and it's already one of my family's favorites. When you add to that the B&W/Color choice, this DVD became a must-buy for us! Overall, I found this to be a great DVD, one that is well worth the cost. My family and I all highly recommend this DVD to you and yours!
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Chappers on 9 Dec. 2012
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
This is a review of the 2-disc Collector's Edition of 'Scrooge' Scrooge (2-Disc Collector's Edition) [DVD], a boxed set which includes both the original Black & White release from 1951, a 'Colourised' version of the same film, and a varied set of extras. I found this set to be a mixed bag of delights.

The 'digitally restored' black & white version is generally very decent, with good clear image detail and sound. However the picture suffers from too much contrast between glaring whites and deep blacks, which I found a strain until I changed my tv setting to a dimmer mode.

The 'colourised' version on the 2nd disc is rather woeful, because the transfer has chopped off some of the original picture. This was most noticeable in the Jacob Marley & First Ghost scenes, where the top half of characters' heads were missing! No matter which tv setting I used - even on 4:3 ratio - I wasn't able to view the whole picture as it was meant to be. Given that I'd bought this double-dvd set so that I could occasionally watch the tepid colour version, I feel rather short-changed.

There are quite a few extras on the discs - none too exciting, unless you're interested in a rather bored George Cole trying to summon up memories of a film made 55 years earlier! Alas there are no subtitles nor trailers. If you want a full breakdown of all the extras, search through the previous reviews for Trevor Willsmer's excellent one of 17 May 2011.

This box set was published by DD Home Entertainment in 2005, so if you're just looking for a decent b&w print of 'Scrooge' you could perhaps try Scrooge [DVD] [1951] which was produced by the same company in 2008.
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