A Christmas Carol (Ultimate Collector's Edition)
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A Christmas Carol (Ultimate Collector's Edition) (1951)

Alastair Sim , Jack Warner  |  NR |  DVD
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1,134 customer reviews)

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Editorial Reviews


This is the desert-island choice of the many versions of A Christmas Carol, with a magnificent, full-bodied portrayal of Ebenezer Scrooge by Alastair Sim that leaves everyone else in the dust. Lean and direct, this film's version of the story wastes no time trying to impress viewers with the magical nature of the spirits' visitations. Director Brian Desmond Hurst keeps the focus on Scrooge's life story, beautifully simplifying and underscoring the theme of lost women with a haunting musical refrain from the folk song "Barbara Allen." Sim's commitment to the role is at times astonishing; his Scrooge's Christmas-morning ecstasy is a marvel of giddy technique. Watch for Patrick Macnee (Steed in The Avengers) as the young Jacob Marley--the actor made his screen debut in this 1951 production. --Tom Keogh

Additional Features

This ultimate collectors' edition is crammed with special features, on both discs.

Amazon exclusive video:
George Cole, who played the
young Ebenezer Scrooge, reflects.Watch here

Find out what’s new on
this restored version of A Christmas Carol. Watch here

Never-before-seen U.S. and
U.K. trailers. Watch here

Film (and Charles Dickens) fans won't want to miss a single screen. The audio commentary by Marcus Hearn and George Cole adds depth and perspective to Sim's amazing performance, and the groundbreaking special effects for the time. Cole also gives a homey remembrance of working with Sim during World War II and living in the English countryside to avoid the Blitz.

One of the most compelling extras is a short bio of George Mintner, the film's executive producer who would go on to found his own successful distribution company, Renown Pictures. An unlikely film mogul, the British Mintner was shy and bookish, but managed to build a reputable mini-studio in the '50s, out of the Hollywood limelight. He produced mostly B-movies, though after A Christmas Carol (originally titled Scrooge), he produced another Dickens adaptation, The Pickwick Papers. There's a great mini-bio of Dickens, who grew up in the poverty that later fascinated him in his writings. Other extras include the colorized version (what were people thinking back in the '80s?), cast bios, original trailers, and a features that more film companies might want to consider, an optional narration for the blind. Nothing is left out for film fans--God bless us, every one.--A.T. Hurley

Product Description

Alastair Sim's tour-de-force performance as the ultimate miser, Ebenezer Scrooge, has almost single-handedly made this beloved version of Charles Dickens' story into one of the best-loved Christmas films of all time. Some of Britain's best filmmakers united behind Sim, who was joined by a delightful cast of accomplished and acclaimed English actors; creating what many today believe to be the best and most faithful production of Dickens' immortal tale. Cranky and curmudgeonly Scrooge learns the error of his unkind ways and is taught the true meaning of the holidays when he is visited by the ghost of his late business partner and the spirits of Christmas past, present and future. Bonus Features: Audio Commentary by Marcus Hearn & George Cole, "Spirit of Christmas Past" - George Cole remembers Alastair Sim, "Richard Gordon Remembers George Minter & Renown Pictures", "Charles Dickens - His Life & Times", Bonus Colorized Version, Original American Theatrical Trailer, Original British Theatrical Trailer, Before & After Restoration Comparison, Optional English & Spanish Subtitles, Optional Narrative for the Blind, Photo & Press Book Gallery, Cast Bios, "Scrooge" (1935 Seymour Hicks Version) Specs: 2-DVD9s; Dolby Digital 5.1; 86 minutes; B&W / Color; Aspect Ratio: B&W Restored Version - 1.33:1; Optional 16x9 Enhanced for Widescreen Monitors; Colorized Version - 1.33:1; MPAA - NR; Year - 1951; SRP - $19.99.
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