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30 of 32 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Miraculous!
Few remakes do justice to the original classic and even fewer improve on it. This one does both. Mara Wilson is wonderful and gives a once in a lifetime performance. In an effort to put a twist on the original they changed the scene where Santa speaks a foreign language to a child come to sit on his lap and instead he uses sign language to speak to a hearing impaired...
Published on December 31, 1998 by riteclik@riteclik.com

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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars This Remake is Okay But It Lacks The Warmth Of The Original.
I love the original Miracle on 34th Street movie and this remake has it's moments and has a very good cast, Richard Attenborough, Dylan McDermott, Elizabeth Perkins and Mara Wilson but it can't hold a candle to the original black and white version and lacks the warmth of that old classic. The actors were fine, it was the atmosphere of the movie that I found kind of cold...
Published on October 7, 2005


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30 of 32 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Miraculous!, December 31, 1998
Few remakes do justice to the original classic and even fewer improve on it. This one does both. Mara Wilson is wonderful and gives a once in a lifetime performance. In an effort to put a twist on the original they changed the scene where Santa speaks a foreign language to a child come to sit on his lap and instead he uses sign language to speak to a hearing impaired child. The result is a very touching scene. John Hughes has done it again!
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51 of 59 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Every bit as good as the original in my opinion, December 10, 2000
By 
Connie (Deer Creek Mesa, CO) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Miracle on 34th Street (DVD)
I love that this remake didn't sell out very much, and put in too much modern stuff. It is very successful in keeping a "traditional" feel, with only a few exceptions. Mara Wilson is absolutely delightful and classic in her performance, and I really like Elizabeth Perkins' reproduction of the original role. And Dylan McDermott, whom I typically find very flat and dull, is sweet and charming as the sincere bachelor attorney with an eye for Perkins.
Richard Attenborough is amazing as Santa, at least as good as the formidable original. The scene in the original featuring Santa visiting with the Dutch war refugee girl is replaced in this remake with Santa visiting with a little deaf girl. The scene in the original is about as sweet as any scene in any movie ever, and the remake is even sweeter! The deaf girl's face, when Santa talks to her in sign language, is absolutely worth the price of this DVD.
The only real weakness for me was the John DeLancie and Jane Leeves part of the movie, as two "evil" agents for the "enemy" department store (where all the upper management wears all black). They reminded me of Joe Pesci and Daniel Stern from "Home Alone" -- sort of bumbling bad guys in a bad cartoon sort of way.
So all in all, I really think that this version is as good or better than the original, which is simply too dated in a few respects for me to be able to enjoy unconditionally. I think both of them are definitely worth owning.
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42 of 48 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A fine remake, December 3, 2003
By 
A. Quinlan (Livonia, MI United States) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Miracle on 34th Street (DVD)
Let me say two things.
1. I love old movies.
2. I mistrust remakes.
However, I loved this remake. It has become a regular part of our Christmas for the past 10 years. My wife loves it and I do as well. Get it now!!
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars This Remake is Okay But It Lacks The Warmth Of The Original., October 7, 2005
A Kid's Review
This review is from: Miracle on 34th Street (DVD)
I love the original Miracle on 34th Street movie and this remake has it's moments and has a very good cast, Richard Attenborough, Dylan McDermott, Elizabeth Perkins and Mara Wilson but it can't hold a candle to the original black and white version and lacks the warmth of that old classic. The actors were fine, it was the atmosphere of the movie that I found kind of cold and lacking of charm compared to the original version!
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Miracle on 34th Street, November 18, 2012
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Hands down, the best holiday movie ever. This version is even better than the original. I watch it all year. I promise you'll love it!
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Some Classics Are Best ..., December 4, 2006
By 
R. DelParto "Rose2" (Virginia Beach, VA USA) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Miracle on 34th Street (DVD)
The 1994 version of Miracle on 34th Street does not bear comparisons or accolades to the original 1947 classic. The film had already been remade prior to this version, and one asks, why? And also, why change a bit of the storyline? John Hughes should be praised for his attempt at producing a holiday film, but it may be an attempt to compete with other films that came out in the early to mid 1990s, the Home Alone movies, Jingle All The Way, and the Santa Clause.

The unique trait about this version is its comic book-like quality. The film is fiction, and is based on Valentine Davies' book of the same name. Indeed, Kris Kringle (Richard Attenborough) saves the day by substituting as Santa Claus for Cole's Thanksgiving Parade. However, there is a villainous quality to the film with the appearance of the antagonist character of the film, rival retail store president of Express Superstore, Shellhammer (Simon Jones III), who wants to engage in a Cole's department store takeover. Unfortunately, this is the unnecessary part of the film. For a moment, one may think this may be a period film, which takes place about the same time as the original -- the costumes of the characters, and the all too familiar New York City scenes.

However, that is not the case. This is a present day version, which emphasizes quite loudly the meaning of Christmas; look closely at the concluding courtroom scene. The main premise of the storyline is intact, but with minor changes. Yes, the store name has changed from Macy's to Cole's, Fred Gaily (John Payne) has changed to Bryan Bedford (Dylan McDermott), and the courtroom scene where Judge Harper (Robert Prosky) determines if Kris Kringle is exactly Santa Claus has slightly changed as well. And there are also the concluding scenes, which are questionable.

Miracle of 34th Street attempts to engage the viewer. The cinematography emphasizes much illumination, and the photography literally shows the characters, Susan (Mara Wilson) and Dorey Walker (Elizabeth Perkins), glowing like angels with the sun shining over them in order to depict a dream-like quality to the feminine characters.

For many who enjoy the original 1947 version of Miracle on 34th street, it is best to avoid this version unless you happen to see it on TV. It is deserving of three stars because of its holiday theme.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars heartwarming christmas story for the whole family., December 13, 1998
By A Customer
Wonderful story of christmas that the whole family can watch year after year.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic Cast, Story and Script, January 13, 2012
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This review is from: Miracle on 34th Street (DVD)
As a fan of the original Miracle on 34th Street, I worried a bit about how much I would like this version. It does not disappoint. The story is different, yet familliar to the original.The writers made it fresh, yet maintained much of the sweetness and sentiment of the 1947 version. Mara Wilson is adorable, yet precocious as Susan. Richard Attenborough is perfect as St. Nick. The rest of the cast from Dylan McDermott as Santa's lawyer, to Elizabeth Perkins as Dorrie (Susan's mom) were also well cast. The only part I think is a bit over the top is the former "Cole's" (not Macy's) Santa. He gets a bit crude at times. The other "bad guys" are pretty harmless, just grouchy and conniving. Honestly, this is one of the Christmas movies I look forward to watching each year. Great for the whole family.
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20 of 29 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars overall as good as the original, September 29, 2000
By 
hardly_b (Palo Alto, CA USA) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Miracle on 34th Street (DVD)
Attenborough is a very satisfactory replacement for Gwynn in this remake, and the little girl is better than Natalie Wood (my biggest complaint about the original is Wood's performance; she's annoyingly precious). The romance is a little flat, but it was in the original, too. Perkins just isn't as good as O'Hara, (hardly anyone is), but McDermott is better than the telephone pole that played the lawyer in the original (it's no accident that John Payne wasn't a big star). And the "trial" makes a little more sense than in the original, although I sure missed William Frawley (aka Fred Mertz) as the judge's political advisor.
Overall, I think that this is a very satisfactory remake. It doesn't quite reach some of the high points of the original, but it avoids enough of the lows to make it just fine. And my kids like it better, probably because it's in color and has a more modern feel. It's become a family tradition to watch it on Christmas Eve, and I rather look forward to it every year...
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11 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Full of holiday magic and charm!, October 10, 2001
By 
D. Litton (Wilmington, NC) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Miracle on 34th Street (DVD)
You'll fall in love with the magic of Christmas all over again with "Miracle on 34th Street," the modern day remake of the 1947 classic film about a young girl who gets the ultimate Christmas wish when she meets the real Santa Claus. With an extremely likeable cast, a faithful adaptation of the original material, and holiday spirit and cheerful execution to boot, this is one holiday film you won't want to miss.
Set in our time, the film opens with the Cole's Thanksgiving Day Parade, as Dorey Walker (Elizabeth Perkins) comes upon a severely drunken actor who has been employed to play Santa Claus in the parade's send-off. Her problems are solved when she runs across the delightful Kris (Richard Attenborough), who bears a striking resemblance to the real deal. She convinces him to replace the now-inept actor, and the parade goes off with nary a fault.
Kris's authenticity touches many of those who come in contact with him, including Dorey's young daughter, Susan (Mara Wilson), who is a non-believer. Kris, along with family friend Bryan Bedford (Dylan McDermott), sets out to make a believer out of Susan, all the while charming the children who sit in his lap at the department store, and causing a buzz of good publicity for the department store.
All of this is done with a great deal of charm and holiday spirit. The movie is one of the better modern Christmas films I've had the pleasure of seeing. The fact that it is based on a classic is of no importance, because it keeps the spirit and wisdom of that previous film and instills into a setting we can better relate to.
It keeps in touch with the original's many touching moments. One that comes to mind is Kris's conversation with a deaf little girl, a truly touching moment that rides the movie's emotional carriage home. It's scenes like this that give the movie such an uplifting sense of direction and spirit, along with the central message, as Kris so magnificently puts it, that "if you can't accept anything on faith, then you're doomed to a life dominated by doubt."
The real delights come from the cast, a perfect addition to the movie's already wonderful story execution. Richard Attenborough is a marvelous actor, and bleeds of good cheer and high spirits; he is the ideal Santa Claus, and his performance is very touching. Equally touching is the acting of little Mara Wilson, who plays Susan with a wit beyond her years, but also provides her with the same childhood skepticism that captivating young minds are so capable of. McDermott and Perkins can't hold a candle to their two costars, but their acting is nonetheless superb, and very believable.
There's nothing to find fault with in this beautifully crafted holiday film, and however you look at it, "Miracle on 34th Street" measures up to the standards of the original. Destined to become a classic, it develops a warmth and charm found in so little modern movies, and its intentions are nothing less than grand.
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Miracle on 34th Street
Miracle on 34th Street by Les Mayfield (DVD - 2000)
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