Santa Claus is Comin' to Town 1970 NR

Amazon Instant Video

(121) IMDb 7.9/10
Available in HD

From Kringle to Claus! Do you remember when...the Burgermeister Meisterburger outlawed toys in Sombertown? A wooden train melted the Winter Warlock's icy heart? And Kris Kringle became Santa Claus? From stockings and chimneys to Santa's long beard, Santa Claus is Comin' to Town tells the story of how our favorite Christmas traditions came to be.

Starring:
Fred Astaire, Mickey Rooney
Runtime:
51 minutes

Available in HD on supported devices.

Santa Claus is Comin' to Town

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Product Details

Genres Fantasy, Musical, Kids & Family
Director Jules Bass, Arthur Rankin Jr.
Starring Fred Astaire, Mickey Rooney
Supporting actors Keenan Wynn, Paul Frees, Joan Gardner, Robie Lester, Andrea Sacino, Dina Lynn, Gary White, Greg Thomas, The Westminster Childrens Choir
Studio Anderson Digital
MPAA rating NR (Not Rated)
Purchase rights Stream instantly and download to 2 locations Details
Format Amazon Instant Video (streaming online video and digital download)

Customer Reviews

The classic movie!
Cheri L. Streeter
He really enjoyed it, as it is one of those timeless Christmas shows that every kid loves at Christmas.
wally gator
It's a heartwarming story with tons of good & memorable characters with lots of great songs to boot.
J. Perez

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

36 of 38 people found the following review helpful By Jim Jr on October 10, 2000
Format: VHS Tape
First, let's clear up one fact, this is NOT Claymation.It is STOP MOTION animation. Claymation has figures made of clay that are filmed one frame at a time. Stop motion has 3 dimentional puppets that are animated one frame at a time like the Ray Harryhousen figures in King Kong, Jason and the Argonaughts etc. There is a vast differance in the techniques.
This fact aside, "Santa Claus Is Coming To Town" is the very best of the wonderful Rankin/Bass specials. The designer for the series of holiday specials, Paul Coker, has done an exceptional job with these delightful wooden and plastic creations. We see Kris Kringle develope from a foundling baby to the Santa figure so well known today. Each stage of his development is wonderful. But then, each of the characters is designed and executed perfectly. Watch the delightful changes of the Winter Worlock from mean and evil to mellow and fun.
All the animation is smooth and precise giving the excellent illusion that these figures are actually alive.
The songs are excellent, from the familiar "Santa Claus is Coming To Town" to the lovely "My World Is Beginning Today" sung by Jessica, the future Mrs. Santa. (For some strange reason, this delightful song is often cut when this production is shown on TV, luckily it is included in the tape.)
The script couldn't be better giving explanations for most of the Santa legends such as how he got his name, how reindeer can fly, why he comes down chimneys and fills stockings. It can make a believer out of even Ebenezer Scrooge.
This has been my absolute favorite Christmas video since I first saw it many years ago on TV. It was one of the reasons I bought my first VCR so I could make a tape of it before it was commercially available. I even have an old LP recording of the complete show. So, do I recommend it, the answer is a resounding YES!!!!!
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26 of 30 people found the following review helpful By "abominablesnowmonster" on November 26, 1999
Format: VHS Tape
"Santa Claus is Comin' to Town" (Rankin/Bass Productions, 1970) is a true Christmas classic. A quintessential "animagic" or "clay-mation" production, it features the talents of Fred Astaire (who narrates the story as postman Special Delivery Kluger), Mickey Rooney (Kris Kringle), Keenan Wynn (Winter Warlock), and Paul Frees (Burgermeister Meisterburger). Frees is absolutely brilliant as the voice of the Burgermeister of the village of Sombertown, which presumably is in Scandinavia. In brief, the film explains the origins of various aspects of the legend of Santa Claus through an original story. People of all ages will enjoy "Santa Claus is Comin' to Town." Children will love the animation and the story. The rest of us appreciate that as well as the hilarious moments when Kris Kringle expresses surprise (watch his eyes swell to giant coal-black circles!). For anyone who grew up in the 1970s or 1980s, this is a gem of the pop culture of our time. It's highly recommended for anyone who has enjoyed other Rankin/Bass classics such as "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer" and "The Little Drummer Boy."
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Greg Ehrbar VINE VOICE on November 27, 2011
Format: Blu-ray
Santa Claus is Comin' to Town came to ABC first in 1970, when Rankin/Bass was firing on all cylinders. The visual difference between this production and that of Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer is considerable, especially with regard to the immense, detailed sets and more intricate characters, designed by Paul Coker, Jr. Yes, there is the same animation "on two's and three's" as well as a few modest effects, but everything clicks within the brisk 51 minutes, none of which seem padded.

When I asked him to name a favorite special (in The Cartoon Music Book) Musical director/composer Maury Laws called this his favorite, because he thought every element was perfect, from the cast to the script to the overall feel. Fred Astaire proved added another dimension to his legendary career as one of the best narrators in any special. Mickey Rooney's bravado was ideal for the young Kris Kringle. Keenan Wynn's Winter Warlock was memorable (especially when he gets the choo-choo). And our beloved Robie Lester (read Mouse Tracks for more about her) was the show-stopper when, as Jessica, she undid the proverbial bun and belted out her solo, a great tune in a score that hasn't a dud in the bunch (though sadly, in today's more creepy times, "Be Prepared to Pay" may seem to take on an odd -- thoroughly unintentional -- connotation).

Santa Claus is Comin' to Town is so spectacular that it's the visual crown jewel in the trilogy with Rudolph and Frosty. And sure, it adds yet another set of myths to confuse those trying to figure out the origin of Santa.

In this case, the story springs from the mind of writer Romeo Muller, but I wonder if, like Rudolph, this special contains a nod to its cultural context.
Read more ›
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By "flickjunkie" on December 8, 2000
Format: VHS Tape
This wonderful 1970 video, using stop-motion animation, tells the story of Santa Claus in a most delightful way. The story is narrated by Fred Astaire, with character voices by Keenan Wynn and Mickey Rooney. The music is marvelous and the story is enchanting. It answers the burning questions we all have about Santa. Why is he called Kris Kringle? Why does he wear a red suit and have whiskers? How did he meet Mrs. Klaus? How did he come to bring toys to children by going down the chimey and why is his workshop at the North Pole? What is the origin of Christmas trees and how do reindeer fly?
All these great mysteries are revealed in this magical tale about Christmas' most famous and beloved figure. It follows his life from the time he was an infant all the way to the jolly and rotund fellow we know and love today.
This charming story is an excellent addition to any child's holiday collection. I rate it a 10/10. It is one of my favorite Christmas shorts and it is perfect for children from two to ninety two years old.
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