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Samantha: An American Girl Holiday (2004)

Mia Farrow , AnnaSophia Robb , Nadia Tass  |  NR |  DVD
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (215 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Mia Farrow, AnnaSophia Robb, Kenner Ames, Stewart Arnott, Olivia Ballantyne
  • Directors: Nadia Tass
  • Writers: Valerie Tripp
  • Producers: Deborah Schindler, Julia Roberts, Lisa Roberts Gillan, Rachael Horovitz
  • Format: Color, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Warner Home Video
  • DVD Release Date: November 30, 2010
  • Run Time: 86 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (215 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00406UK50
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #253,504 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Samantha: An American Girl Holiday" on IMDb

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Editorial Reviews

For years, girls have wished for a movie about their favorite American Girl. Finally that wish comes true in the first-ever, full-length, live action movie starring long-time favorite Samantha Parkington! Samantha: An American Girl Holiday brings history boldly to life as it takes girls on journey back to New York in 1904. Samantha's prim and proper Grandmary is raising her to be a young lady, but her life starts changing the day she meets Nellie O'Malley, the servant girl next door. Though they come from different worlds, they become fast friends, facing happiness and sorrow, adventure and danger together. But nothing can prepare them for the life-altering surprises that await them this holiday season.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
46 of 50 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars They did a good job with this! December 16, 2004
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
I was probably Samantha's age when I got into the American Girls books, and now I'm closer to Aunt Cornelia's age, which is a little mind-boggling to me. I wasn't expecting much from this movie, but I really liked it, and my husband did too. Some of the actors are better than others, but AnnaSophia Robb really carries her role. If her hair color were as convincing as her acting, it would be easy to get lost in the moment. Mia Farrow, Jordan Bridges, and Rebecca Mader all do a great job, as well.
I did notice some odd little plot changes and wonder why they were there. Was Jessie's storyline cut because of time restrictions? Was it impossible to include non-Nellie-related adventures? Did we really see, in the movie, how important Lydia (the doll) was to Samantha and how significant it was to give her away? And wasn't the jar stolen from Eddie Ryland originally full of bugs rather than coins?
Most of my issues with the movie are based on my having read the books rather than on the movie itself (although I do wonder why the girls can't pronounce "da"!), and the movie can stand on its own--it's that good. The whole family can enjoy a movie like this together; although the DVD extras do seem to be aimed at the younger portion of the family audience, they are interesting for even adults to watch once. I hope there are more American Girls movies to look forward to in the future.
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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Must Have! November 5, 2005
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
My 6 year old daughter has read all of the Samantha adventures, and was excited to get this movie as a gift. It is a nice story with all the books woven together. The acting, scenery, costuming, and music are all first rate and true to the American Girl line. Most importantly, it is wonderful to have a movie that captivates children and has such wonderful lessons of kindness, giving, standing up for what you believe, and sacrificing for others. It's very hard to find true gems like this among all the trash they make for girls these days. As a mom, I am so grateful that there are people still willing to make quality movies with traditional values for young girls today. This is definatly a must have for any girl age 6-12.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Okay, I admit it, I watched it.... November 29, 2004
A Kid's Review
I'm older than what many people would except to find still liking something like American girl dolls, but I'm a kid at heart. When I heard that Samantha was going to have a movie, I was elated. I've had my doll for over five years now. And I have the books, all of them, too, thank you very much.

It's about Samantha Parkington, a girl who is living in 1904, and is living with her grandmother since she's an orphan. She wants some sort of playmate (since she dispises her next door neighbor, Eddie Ryland). She meets Nellie O'Mally, a hired girl who works for the Rylands. They become instant friends, and they stick together, through the thick and thin of their lives, including the tragedy of Nellie's life.

Personally, I missed the story of the original Samantha book, Meet Samantha, where Nellie and Samntha go looking for Jessie, the seamstress who suddely quit and moved away from Samntha. Jessie's got a minor part now, and is a maid instead. Also, what has not been mentioned in the reviews yet is that Cornelia's two twin sisters, Agnes and Agatha, two girls who are Samntha's age, are changed! Agnes, to my knowledge, is Cornelia's older sister, who has a daughter named (you guessed it) Agatha. I missed the two feisty red-heads!

Although they lost some of the books heart and plot (the books are fifty pages each, people! Not too hard to adapt!) I was pleased how wonderfully done this movie was. It was eye-candy, too. The houses and scenery was delicious. I loved AnnaSophia Robb as Samantha, but Mia Farrow wasn't exactly the Grandmary I was hoping for. Someone a bit more aged and strict, but you can't ask for much. I hope they make movies on the other American girls as well!
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24 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Heart-Warming and Really Cute January 16, 2005
I'm a big fan of period drama, and while Samantha- An American Girl Holiday, is clearly geared towards girls, I found myself really enjoying this film, and I'm an adult! This follows the adventures of Samantha- an orphan who lives with her strict Grandmother GrandMarie in Upper New York. She befriends a young Irish girl who was hired to be a maid for a next door neighbor. Samantha's friendship with Nellie was very well portrayed, and all the characters- included Sam's aunt and uncle were great.

This is a fun classic for those who want a warm, feel-good story to perk up those winter months, or to share with your kids or other kids at heart! I certainly hope they make more books in this series as this film was wonderul and entertaining! Five Stars.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars All-Around Great Wholesome Movie August 24, 2005
By Lisa
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
We first saw this when it debuted on tv. After sitting through the entire movie and being entranced by it, my girls actually imitated the politeness of Samantha and the other girls. They answered "Yes, Ma'am" or "No Ma'am". It was so refreshing to see a movie for the kids that was fun for them to watch and taught them some history about that time period. When it was first released on DVD, I bought it. My girls still love watching it. Recently, we picked up the 6 book set of Samantha books. They are anxious to get started on the books since they already know the characters. Had I been introduced to the American Girls Series as a kid, I would have definitely had an interest in learning History/Social Studies. But since I'll be reading the books to my girls, I guess it's never too late to learn....
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