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Product Description

A mixed bag as variations on A Christmas Carol go, this 1970 British musical tells the usual story of Scrooge (Albert Finney) and his spirits on Christmas Eve, although the whole thing is set to music by Leslie Bricusse. Except for Finney's feisty and involved performance, however, there isn't much to recommend this. The songs, which absorb so much of the evolving story line and emotions, are not all that good. Plenty of support, however, from the likes of Roy Kinnear (Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory) and Dame Edith Evans (Tom Jones), the handsome production is directed by veteran Ronald Neame (The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie). --Tom Keogh

Customer Reviews:

  • Best Scrooge musical
    Memorable songs, familiar characters, wonderful imagery and special effects, all add up to a great musical adaptation of the Charles Dickens classic. Finney's querulous old miser is very well done. Scrooge is written as more than just a master of high finance: he is a local money-lender as well, and all the little people who owe him money are portrayed with warmth and sympathy. His sips of the "milk of human kindness" brings an appropriate warming to his cold heart, and his sorrow and later redemption warm the audience's heart as well. Turn up the music, and enjoy the show!...more info
  • My Holiday Favorite
    I've loved this movie for years, and my poor old VHS tape has been a holiday tradition at my house. Now that I've got it on dvd, I'm singing "Thank You Very Much!" This is the first time my family has ever seen the whole image of the film thanks to the widescreen format. The colors and images look sharp and the songs sound better than ever. This is my favorite holiday film because I have always loved the music, the cast, the sets, everything about it. Now it will be all I can do to save it up for December because I won't want to wait a year to see it again....more info
  • infectious score and wonderful performance by Albert Finney
    This is without a doubt my favorite "Scrooge" interpretation.
    Albert Finney is one of our finest actors and the score and production numbers make this movie a joy to watch every Christmas season.
    It is fun to recall Albert Finney's performance as "Tom Jones" as you watch this movie!!!! He is still a gem!!!...more info
  • A timeless story
    There are several versions of this classic story. Everyone has their favorite. This is ours. The music and the dancing puts you in an uplifting mood. The meaning of the story is still there unlike what others have to say. Christmas to me should be uplifting and meaningful. Kids of all ages will enjoy this version....more info
  • Scrooge DVD
    Received the Scrooge DVD in a timely manner and it arrived in excellant condition and I have viewed in and the product quality was great....more info
  • Classic!
    This is one of the best musical adaptations ever. Unfortunately, it is often overlooked in favor of far inferior versions. Every family should make watching this film a Christmas tradition. It could even make you wish you were living back in Dickens' time! An all star cast and memorable songs make this DVD highly recommended.
    ...more info
  • Great Holiday Treat
    This is by far my favorite holiday movie as well as my favorite version of Dickens' 'A Christmas Carol'. The classic tale is retold in musical form providing a wonderful twist. The performances are matchless and the scenery and costumes are outstanding. No Christmas Eve would be complete without seeing it. I've owned it on VHS for years now and I've been hoping for a DVD version and finally it's here! It's an older movie so naturally the special features are very limited but the remastered picture and sound quality are excellent. ...more info
  • Ya Gotta Get This One
    Bought this on for my wife and cannot for the life of me figure out how I ever missed seeing this movie. The cast was wonderful, and refreshing to both watch and listen to. I also have the Reginald Owen and the Alistair Sims versions of A Christmas Carol but this one is in a class by itself. You will love it....more info
  • Finney Says "Humbug!"
    Charles Dickens' classic tale, A CHRISTMAS CAROL, has been performed innumerable times on stage, screen, radio and television. Gifted actors like Lionel Barrymore, Alastair Sim, Reginald Owen, Fredric March, George C. Scott and even Bill Murray have all played miserly Ebenezer Scrooge, who after a night of ghostly visits, becomes a new person who embraces life and is kind to his fellow man.

    My favorite rendition of Dickens' story is SCROOGE (1970), a musical in the tradition of OLIVER! (1968).

    Albert Finney is marvelous in the title role, playing to perfection both the elderly Scrooge and also the money lender as a young man, who chooses his quest for wealth over the one love of his life.

    Alec Guinness co-stars as Marley's Ghost, Edith Evans is the Ghost of Christmas Past and Kenneth More plays the Ghost of Christmas Present. Also in the talented cast are Laurence Naismith, Michael Medwin, David Collings, Anton Rodgers and Suzanne Neve.

    The score by Leslie Bricusse is very hummable. I particularly enjoyed "December the 24th," "Thank You, Very Much," "I Love Life" and "Begin Again". Finney is no Sinatra, but his singing voice is equal to his material.

    Ronald Neame directed this colorful, joyous production.

    ? Michael B. Druxman...more info
  • scrooge
    in this classic retelling of the christmas carol, we have a beautiful musical and wonderful speacial effect laden movie for its time , with albert finney and the late sir alec guiness, this movie has a wonderful score that you can't help , but sing with , songs like "thank you very much" "i like life" , i recommend this as part of your christmas movie collection ...more info
  • Our collection
    This is one of the best Christmas Carol movies. We have had the video tape for 20 years and were glad to add this DVD to our collection of Christmas favorites...more info
  • scrooge
    in this classic retelling of the christmas carol, we have a beautiful musical and wonderful speacial effect laden movie for its time , with albert finney and the late sir alec guiness, this movie has a wonderful score that you can't help , but sing with , songs like "thank you very much" "i like life" , i recommend this as part of your christmas movie collection ...more info
  • December the 25th!
    This is one of my favorite movies of all time, period! I have always been perplexed as to why - when folks speak of great Christmas movies, Albert Finney's Scrooge is rarely - or never mentioned. I have concluded that there are still hordes of people who love Christmas movies who have never seen this - and many who (although it was released around 1970) don't even know that it exists. I saw it the first time it appeared on television and have never looked back! An amazingly talented cast of characters including Finney in his best role ever as Ebeneezer. In my humble opinion, Finney owns the role of Scrooge. None of the other great actors, past or present who have portrayed Scrooge, have ever managed to endow the character with such life and depth. Finney's portrayal is magical. The musical numbers and the brilliant choreography are second to none. What a Christmas treat!...more info
    never thought a christmas carol could successful be made into a musical. this is successful. great acting by albert finney....more info
  • Great holiday movie !!!!
    This is a great holiday movie, it's a musical but not over done. I highly recomend this for a christmal carol lovers....more info
  • I have never been a fan of musicals....
    But I love this film! First and foremost, Albert Finney played the best Scrooge none. This character was not simply a miserable miser as seen other films, he is mean! Damn mean! Ronald Neame directed this film perfectly. Scrooge was not only mean, but he LOOKED cheap, right down to his dirty face and filthy fingernails. All of the other casting was done just as brilliantly. The ghost of Jacob Marley was played by Alec Guiness of Star Wars' Ben (Obi-Wan) Kenobi fame, (you would never know it...shows what a versitile actor he is!). Tiny Tim was not just some kid, he seems ill. Bob Cratchit was not some sniviling whelp, but a fun loving individual who worked under Scrooge's thumb without question, (he was so much more like the Cratchit in the book than in any other film). Old Fezziwig ACTUALLY make you feel merry. Anton Rodgers plays Tom Jenkins flawlessly, (Thank You Very Much!). Every other cast member from Isabel to the ghosts fit their parts perfectly. I am not much of a movie stats buff, but hats off to whoever did the casting. I was also impressed with the fact that you could really see how forlorn Scrooge was as he reflects on his life. Also, unlike other films, he does not change miraculously all at once. While the ghost of Christmas present shows him the party at his nephew's home, Scrooge turns slowly from angry to having the time of his life playing a game of the minister's cat with the party folk. At this time of merryment, (obviously none can see/hear him). He ridicules people and calls someone stupid while he is reveling gleely. This, unlike other films shows the true nature of his transformation. This is my favorite Christmas movie of all time... bar none!...more info
  • Scrooge
    This is the best rendition by far of a Christmas Carol. It supplies comedy, music, and the real life lesson of the true meaning of Christmas. It's been a favorite tradition at my house every year and now I have my own copy. Worth every penny. Thanks, Amazon! ...more info
  • As good as I remember
    A musical presentation of the Dickens classic that holds quite true to the original text. Albert Finney puts on a Scrooge that rivals the best of them. Includes a a great Jacob Marley by Sir Alec Guinness. ...more info
  • Scrooge
    This is the best rendition by far of a Christmas Carol. It supplies comedy, music, and the real life lesson of the true meaning of Christmas. It's been a favorite tradition at my house every year and now I have my own copy. Worth every penny. Thanks, Amazon! ...more info
  • Singing a Different Tune
    Still in a holiday vein as of this writing, I present my editorial musings about the first film version of the Charles Dickens classic I remember seeing. I've enjoyed several screen renderings of "A Christmas Carol". I admire the 1951 version with Alastair Sim's classic portrayal, that is probably the most popular one, although it adds facets to the story that Dickens didn't put in print; the 1938 version with Reginald Owen leaves out crucial details of Scrooge's love life, although good. The 1984 version with George C. Scott reveals his Patton-like quality in the part, yet strikes me as one of the warmest versions of the story(David Warner and Susannah York give the most formidable portrayals of the Cratchits, and Roger Rees and Caroline Langrishe make the most handsome pairing of Scrooge's niece and nephew in that version).The 1992 big screen feature with Michael Caine and the Muppets is cute. Patrick Stewart's 1999 incarnation of the miser was very forceful.
    But in this lively, colorful 1970 version, Albert Finney, then in his mid-thirties, impresses us with his range and reasonable vocal talent.The Golden Globe Award he received for it was well-deserved.
    One overlooks the inaccuracy of the year in question being 1860(The story having first been published in December 1843), to find amusement in Finney's ill-humored, misanthrope in his routinely negative interactions with those whom he regularly deals, demanding that everyone who owes him money, from Tom Jenkins( Anton Rogers) who gives soup to the poor, to a couple of ladies who make garments for poor children(Molly Weir and Helena Gloag, who along with a later-appearing Gordon Jackson, were also featured in Director Ronald Neame's film, "The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie" a year earlier), pay up. Scrooge also spurns another opportunity to dine with his niece and nephew ( Michael Medwin, and Mary Peach), and refuses an offer for a charitable donation along the way, singing, "I Hate People".
    In contrast, we see a good-spirted Bob Cratchit( David Collings) managing to keep the faith during the holiday season despite the meager wages Scrooge pays him, shopping with his two younger children, Kathy and Tiny Tim( Karen Scargill, and Richard Beaumont), enjoying the sights and sounds, gradually finding their way to a warm and loving household where Mrs. Cratchit(Frances Cuka) and the rest of the brood, mostly spry redheads like their father, have made preparations for festivities.
    After a taunting by street urchins, Scrooge retires to his house, a hunched over and crotchety old man with a twisted mouth, who is about to be given, in the modern vernacular, an attitude adjustment. He notices something strange about the face of his doorknocker as he enters his house;it has an unusual and yet familiar face to it. Momentarily startled, he shakes off the idea of being haunted.
    But soon, his deceased business partner, Jacob Marley(the normally staidly charismatic Alec Guiness in a comical turn) appears to Scrooge, warning him to amend his parsimonious ways or prepare for a fate worse than his own in the afterlife. After escorting Scrooge through a celestial barrage of doomed spirits, Marley warns him to expect three otherworldly visitors who will be instrumental in his reclamation.
    The first is the Ghost of Christmas Past( Dame Edith Evans, who appeared with Finney in "Tom Jones"), a dignified elderly lady in 18th century costume, who guides Scrooge through his painful childhood, a Christmas in which he is reunited with his sister, Fan, and a Christmas party during his apprenticeship to a merchant named Fezziwig( Laurence Naismith), also presided over by Fezziwig's wife (Kay Walsh). The song, "December the 25th" was one that I've always remembered from this film.In this scene, we see Finney as the young, strong, clear-eyed man he was at the time--less of the rogue in "Tom Jones" and more of the staid Mark in "Two For the Road", accompanied by an endearingly pretty and dulcet-toned, Suzanne Neve, as his sweetheart, Isabelle. Her song, "Happiness is Whatever You Want it to Be", is one I slowly came to like over the years. Her light, wispy tones are reminiscent of those of Mark Lester in another Dickens-based musical of the era, "Oliver!" Initially, I found her singing to her staid fiance annoying, thinking, "No wonder it didn't work!", but have since noted a certain charm when Scrooge tacitly slips a ring on her finger during a buggy ride.
    Soon enough, we see Isabel renounce him because money matters more to him than love. It is a solemnly painful moment, in which we see the miser's mouth beginning to twist. The scene of Scrooge weeping at the remembrance of lost love is poignant.
    One Spirit diagnoses the disorder. Another will help the patient begin therapy.
    Kenneth More's booming-voiced and convivial Ghost of Christmas Present invites Scrooge to share in his bounty, feeds him the Milk of Human Kindness, and teaches him to sing "I Like Life", a tune with staid Victorian elegance. Soon they fly through the night to visit the Cratchits and Scrooge's nephew, the latter of whom is having a party. In the poorer household, he sees Mrs. Cratchit's visible resentment of him, and hears Tiny Tim's sweet singing. In his nephew's house, he learns of the desire for reconciliation with him, and enjoys their fun and games.
    Soon enough, the most blithe of the spirits departs, and Scrooge is confronted by the Ghost of Christmas Yet To Come( Paddy Stone), who is faceless and silent. Finney has some of his best onscreen moments cowering before this apparition.
    As is the case with more than one episode of the Dickens classic, this musical takes liberties with the issue of Scrooge's demise. But here, it's more fun. A year after viewing this film, my 6th grade class and I performed the Oscar nominated number, "Thank You very Much" at our year-end program complete with kazoo accompaniment during the interlude.It's interesting that I was able to detect the song's origin by that time.
    After the celebration whose meaning Scrooge does not quite see, he views the Cratchits in mourning for Tiny Tim, and realizes how his eternal fate is linked with this child's. His final encounter with Jacob Marley is a riot.
    Waking up traumatized, Scrooge vows to change, ending this story "...on a note of hope and a strong amen", forgiving debts, donating to charity, and in a moment most symbolic of Christmas, embracing the poor child who will, in many ways, be his main hope for redemption.
    Whereas a day before, he sang, "I Hate People", he now sings, "I Like Life".
    The performers, for the most part, were not required to be stellar singers, but their ranges were pleasant, and adquate enough for this musical.
    Under Ronald Neame's direction, and with Leslie Bricusse's score, I can say I was introduced to the tale of Ebenezer Scrooge in the most engaging and sprightly of manners.
    ...more info
  • Our collection
    This is one of the best Christmas Carol movies. We have had the video tape for 20 years and were glad to add this DVD to our collection of Christmas favorites...more info
  • Thank ya very much!!! Great reviews!
    If you've never seen this film... AND you love Scrooge movies... AND you love the Spirit of Redemption that "A Christmas Carol" can bring to the depths of your soul... then buy this movie. I don't think I've ever seen such a mismatch between what the "all-knowing critics" have to say about a film and what the fans have to say about a film! Miserly critics always damn this movie with faint praise! Well--the praise for this film (around 400 5 star reviews!) ain't faint! I saw this movie in the theatre when I was twelve and I absolutely loved it... Finney is terrific. No matter the Scrooge move, I always love the transformation that take place at the end of the film. Well--the end of this film is spectacular--and very moving. The fans of the film have it right. Buy this film, enjoy, and be redeemed!...more info
  • Musical Scrooge
    My husband and I saw this movie years ago and had never seen it again. We really enjoyed it the first time and have been looking for it on TV, but it never came. So, I decided to do some searching on and found it after a few minutes. We bought it and were delighted to see it again. It has all the elements of the regular Scrooge movies, but has some more light-hearted parts with singing, and the singing at the end makes you want to get up and dance and sing with them. We love this movie....more info
  • Patrick Hatfield
    A TIMELESS CLASSIC - Some movies simply capture the Christmas spirit! Like the original MIRACLE ON 34TH STEET, IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE, and Alistair Sim's A CHRISTMAS CAROL; Albert Finney, Sir Alec Guinness and Kenneth More create that "Christmas feeling".
    They pass the test. My children grew up singing "Father Christmas" "I Like Life" and "Thank You, Very Much". Now, my grandchildren sing along. (When your kids and your kid's kids like it, you know it's got to be good!)
    The production is lavish. The actors fill their roles to perfection. (And who would have thought a short little guy like Kenneth More could play a giant!)
    A timeless classic that really says, MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!...more info