The House Without a Christmas Tree
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I wish I could give this story an even higher rating than a mere five stars! It is 1946 in the small town of Clear River, Nebraska, and Addie Mills, the lively, intelligent and artistic daughter of widower James Mills, who is being raised by her grandmother because her mother died shortly after she was born, once again broaches the idea of having a Christmas tree. Her father, who has remained withdrawn and embittered in the long years since her mother's death, as always fobs her off. Then Addie wins the classroom Christmas tree and takes it home...
This wonderful story was filmed and first broadcast in 1972 and shown on CBS. It was produced on videotape, which takes away a bit of the magic. However, it also makes you feel as if you are eavesdropping on this family, as if they were participants in a reality series. Lisa Lucas is splendid as the articulate Addie and Mildred Natwick is a charming grandma, but major kudos go to Jason Robards in the role of Addie's father. He could have been portrayed as a soulless tyrant but is revealed to be a desperately grieving and unhappy man instead.
The "look" of this special contributes to its appeal; the clothing, the sets, the classroom situation all makes you feel as if you are truly back in 1946. Paramount Video needs to release the three sequels as well; THANKSGIVING TREASURE is particularly good, and the fourth story, ADDIE AND THE KING OF HEARTS, has never been released to video at all. It sells on bootleg sites for $$$!
(I have a web page devoted to Addie that covers the different specials and the books (no advertising allowed!) at addiemills dot flyingdreams dot com. Hope you enjoy.)
Year after year, this program aired on CBS, especially in the 1970's. My sister and I adored this film, and I still try to get anyone to watch it. It is nostalgic, and the set decoration, as well as the immediacy and realism of the characters are well-crafted. I'm not sure if actor Lisa Lucas still reads reviews on Amazon.com, but she should realize what a powerful performance she gave as the young Addie Mills. There is nothing overtly sentimental in anyone's performance, and director Paul Bogart created a memorable film in the television medium format. It was obviously done on a low-budget, but it proves that little money can still make a powerful story.
It's sad, since Jason Robards, Mildred Natwick, and even Addie's friend in the film, "Carla Mae" have passed away. I can only hope that everyone who is still alive who helped to make this film, recognizes what a wonderful film they made that should be re-introduced on television now amongst all the junk that plays every year around the holidays.
A MUST SEE CHRISTMAS CLASSIC. You owe it to yourself to see this little known classic.
Buy this for your family and friends... and thanks to Amazon.com for allowing us the opportunity to relive the best moments of our holiday past...
Addie tries to please her dad but keeps missing the mark. She knows nothing of her mother because her dad doesn't speak of her and refuses to have anything in the house that reminds him of his dead wife. Hence, his refusal to get Addie a Christmas tree. His mother tries to make him understand that Addie needs his love, not just a roof over her head and food to eat.
This little drama is well acted and touches the heart. No doubt some folks grew up in a house that looked very much like the home set in this video. How often have people baked Christmas cookies for others because it's all they could do? This drama was done back in the 70's for CBS which doesn't make it ancient but still it has an aged look about it. The film looks older than it is which adds to its charm.
Please don't miss the opportunity to sit down and watch this with your children. It would also make a great Christmas gift for a child. There is no nudity, profanity, violence or sex in this film. It is kid friendly. Parents, please purchase with confidence.
You will find this video highly enjoyable! Please get one before they are all gone. It might not be so easy to find once supplies are exhausted.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This movie is a very simple Christmas production that is low on set design and sound but delivers a good message. Read morePublished 3 months ago by L. Casciole
Watch this movie every Christmas. One of my favorites. Touching father and daughter movie.Published 4 months ago by Ches
This was a Christmas present for my mom who always talked about this movie from her child hood. When we gave it to her she right away started watching it. So worth the money.Published 4 months ago by Jennifer
This is a tear-jerker. Love the way it is filmed like a theater type stage and on location outside shots. Brilliant production, filming, lighting and acting. Read morePublished 5 months ago by Michael L. Sweet
Always loved this story.Wonderful Christmas movie and very nostalgicPublished 5 months ago by Marcia Mansfield
Was glad to find this again, all the actors did a fine job and was interesting to see how a house interior looked way back then, and the fact that CHRISTMAS was actually celebrated... Read morePublished 5 months ago by see hearnow