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Showing 1-10 of 1,347 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 1,736 reviews
on November 21, 2016
This concerns the MorningStar Emerald Edition. There were two versions of this film. In North America it was released as 'A Christmas Carol'. In the U.K. it was released as 'Scrooge'. VCI uses the U.K. version in all it's releases except for the very first VHS tape in the '70's. Mornigstar uses the North American version. The restoration is not as extreme as VCI's. The focus is softer, there is munch less grain, and the blacks aren't as quite as deep, but just enough, and the image is clean and stable. This is the way I remember seeing it in the living room on my family's old 12" black and white RCA television. Frankly I'm very glad to have found it.
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on December 25, 2014
This is an incredibly moving (and quite serious, even bleak) version of the Charles Dickens Classic.
In fact this British-made film originally produced in 1951 and directed by Irish-born Brian Desmond Hurst, and starring the amazingly talented thespian Alastair Sim is perhaps the most realistically/ authentically 'Dickensian' of all the numerous versions = there are no song-and-dance numbers here, but there definitely exists a convincingly 'haunting' atmosphere (nearly akin to a great horror/suspense film at times).

When encountering the variety of Christmas 'ghosts' (each more frightening than the last), Alastair Sim's reactions are those of a man in genuine peril, and also of an individual who is truly 'awakening' to the fact that he must seriously mend his ways, if he has any chance at salvaging his very soul.

This is powerful stuff indeed, the intensity of Sim's performance makes his ultimate 'change of Heart' that much more compelling and emotionally impactful, when it finally arises (i.e. when the authentic Christmas spirit is unleashed/ set-free!) But after watching this darker, more intense rendition of Dickens' masterpiece, it might be less rewarding to watch those 'lighter' in tone & temperament, modern versions!

note: some of the intimidating and foreboding 'spirits' (especially the one from the future), made me think I was watching Ingmar Bergman's darkly-fatalistic "The Seventh Seal")
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on December 2, 2016
I don't know if it's my Samsung 4K upscaling Blu-Ray player, or my Samsung 4K TV, or this DVD itself, but the image quality on this is fantastic. It's like it was filmed last week in black and white, not 65 years ago. Speaking of which, I was afraid it was colorized with all the imagery on the DVD cover being in color, but happily it is presented in black and white. Never been a fan of colorizing movies.

Always a great film. I bought this and the 1938 Reginald Owen film to do a "taste test". I think I like he Scrooge from this version, and the Cratchits from the 1938 version, but both are great.

My only complaint is with the cheap covers that you get DVDs in any more. Regardless of whether the reason is to benefit the environment or the publishers bottom line, I've seen water bottles with thicker plastic.
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on December 22, 2013
I recall other movie versions of A Christmas Carol, and some plays I have seen, that portray Scrooge as a colorful but essentially harmless curmudgeon. When I saw Alastair Sim play the part for the first time I understood that Scrooge is no cute old man. He is terrifying, a monster, a villain, a force for evil. When Dickens explains that the blind man's dog drags him away from Scrooge, you have trouble picturing this image, until you see Sim in the role. This version is simply masterful. The added material (not in the novella) is consistent with the original story and gives insight into Scrooge's character. The acting throughout is strong but never over the top. For example Brian Worth is convincing as Fred in his jovial nature and patience with his uncle. Certainly Kathleen Harrison gives a masterful performance as Mrs. Dilber, with her ghoulish attempt to benefit from Scrooge's death and her colorful response to Scrooge's conversion. This movie, like the novella, works because it captures the extremity of despair in the poverty of Victorian England and the brutal inhumanity of the main character and then effectively transforms both to joy and optimism, somehow believably, through the miracle of Christmas. The transformation is convincing and the reborn Scrooge, as portrayed by Sim, is as convincing as a benevolent patriarch as he was as a heartless scoundrel. The dark scenes at the beginning and middle of this film can be hard to watch for the faint hearted. Nevertheless the genius of the film is that the impact of the end of the film is stronger because of the sadness and despair shown earlier in the film. If one softened the despair the ending would be much less effective. There may be other decent versions of this story, but I plan to stick with this one for Christmases in the foreseeable future.
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on January 2, 2015
This 1951 version is perhaps the finest version of the classic Charles Dickens' story of Christmas hope and redemption, "A Christmas Carol". It is far superior to the 1935 and 1935 versions, and even holds its own against more modern tellings of this tale. It has a very dark beginning, almost a horror film, with some wonderful special effects and scary surprises. Scrooge is wonderfully played by the great Alistair Sim, who plays the money-grasping Scrooge as if it was written for him. Plus, a wonderful supporting cast including Michael Hordern as Marley, Patrick MacNee ('The Avengers') as the youthful Marley and a wonderful performance by by Jack Warner as the cunning and deviously carefree Mr. Jorkin who first steals Scrooge and Marley from Mr. Fezziwig (Roddy Hughes) and then embezzles the company's funds until Scrooge and Marley acquire controlling interest and take over the counting house. In well played flashbacks, young Scrooge (played by Alastair Sim's good friend and protege George Cole) is shown his past, present and future in some touching scenes, such as his sister Fan's (Carol Marsh) tragic death in childbirth of Scrooges nephew Fred (Brian Worth), who Scrooge blames for Fan's death. Scrooge is also seen losing the love of his life Miss Flora (Elenor Summerfield) to his greed for money. Rounding out the cast is Kathleen Harrison as Mrs. Dilber, Scrooge's housekeeper and Mervyn Johns and Hermoine Baddely as Scrooge's clerk Bob Cratchit and his wife, and a sly performance by Miles Malleson as Old Joe, the rag and bone man that dickers for Scrooge's possesions after he's dead, and Ernest Thesiger as the creepy Undertaker. I had an earlier version of this DVD that was introduced by Pactrick MacNee, and it was my understanding that Charles Dickens' great granddaughter viewed the film and said she though it was the best version and closest to Dickens' tale as she had ever seen. Highly Recommended ***** stars!
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on December 21, 2015
This review is for the Diamond Edition Blu-Ray/DVD combo.

All I can say is WOW! This transfer is leaps & bounds ahead of all other DVD copies out there. The picture, compared to other copies is crystal clear, and even the sound is better. Very sharp picture, contrast is excellent, and I can see things in this movie that I missed before due to poor picture quality.

My favorite Christmas movie of all time has been made even better, and I'm very pleased with this purchase!
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on February 21, 2017
My favorite Christmas movie! Alastair Sim is absolutely the best Scrooge ever. When he is mean boy he's mean, but when he finds redemption the joy he shows is exactly what you would think someone would have. Anyway, This DVD is the black & white version not colorized - what I wanted - and has some nice extra features. So glad I gave myself this Christmas Gift!
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on February 15, 2017
The movie is excellent and very true to the book. IMO: this is the best movie version of all that have been made in the last 70 years.

Four stars because the VCI version, despite all of their remasterings, is not as good as the Emerald version. However, this VCI version is superior to all previous VCI versions. The Emerald version will give you a brighter image, while retaining sharpness equal to the VCI version. Additionally, the Emerald version has more picture. The VCI version, at some point in it's history, has been cropped on the top, bottom and right sides so, it is missing some extra fullness. The audio in the VCI version is superior to the Emerald version, although the VCI version does have a section of audio missing near the end, unlike the Emerald version.

If using this VCI version, the better way to view it is in the original 4x3 aspect ratio as opposed to the wide screen format. Like so many remasterings to wide screen, they have to chop off a great deal of the top and bottom of the picture to make it seem like it is true wide screen. as mentioned above, with the already reduced screen dimensions, this version can hardly stand any more reduction in the picture.
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on July 15, 2016
When I saw this on TV it brought back an old memory! I was 10 years old when this movie first came out (1951, as noted on the back of the package) and my aunt took me to see it because I loved the book. However, I remember being afraid of not only the ghosts but of Scrooge himself because he was so mean, and I made my aunt take me out before the end of the movie! So I never saw the entire movie until I saw it on TV and I knew I had to have it. Well, to tell you the truth - the ghost of his partner still gives me a bit of a fright but then I'm a coward anyway! In my opinion, Sim is the ultimate Scrooge, the ultimate miser. He made Charles Dickens' story come to life so if you want the classic movie of the classic story, this is the movie for you.
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on December 20, 2015
Don't be fooled by the reviews as I was. This is a single disc with the black and white classic only. The reviews say it has two discs containing the black and white and colorized versions. I was very disappointed. I am surprised that Amazon did not pick up on this. I gave 4 stars because this 1951version is my favorite and I enjoyed the digital quality of the DVD. I am disappointed that I don't have the colorized one also.
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