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Old 12-03-2008, 09:11 AM
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Seymour Hicks as Scrooge--try it, you'll like it

It seems as though the 1935 British Seymour Hicks version of "Scrooge" may unjustly be the least popular film version of "A Christmas Carol." Most viewers are more familiar with the newer, flossier versions: the 1938 M-G-M version, the classic 1950 Alastair Sim version, the 1984 George C. Scott version. But try old Sir Seymour sometime.

Try to find a video of the complete 78-minute version---not the abridged version usually available, which is a good 20 minutes shorter. If you can't find one, try the shorter version anyway. The film is very faithful to the mood and tone of Dickens' text, and Sir Seymour puts his heart into his performance. By the time he made this film, he had played Scrooge for decades on stage and once before in films, in a 1913 silent film. He may look different from other Scrooges you've seen, but his voice is perfect. Donald Calthrop, who plays Crachit, looks eerily like John Leech's illustration of him in the first edition of "A Christmas Carol." In the uncut version, he has a very touching scene in which he sits for a few moments with the body of Tiny Tim.

Although Sir Seymour is a perfectly gruff and grouchy Scrooge, you can catch him occasionally doing a "take" that may remind you of W.C. Fields---and why not? Fields was a fan of Dickens' books, and probably saw Sir Seymour play Scrooge on stage while Fields was touring in vaudeville as a juggler. I like to think Fields pays tribute to Sir Seymour when he does one of HIS "takes" in a film.

Long story short---if you're a fan of "A Christmas Carol," try Sir Seymour Hicks. He may not become your favorite Scrooge, but once you've watched his performance, you'll find a spot for him in your Christmas.
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Old 12-03-2008, 09:17 AM
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I have watched this and I agree, he was a great Scrooge.
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Old 12-03-2008, 06:35 PM
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Old 12-06-2008, 03:05 AM
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I have perhaps 7 different DVDs with some version of Scrooge, it's a film that tends to be included in a lot of sets or even CD collections. I'm not even sure which versions I own, but hopefully among them I have them all. Perhaps I'll check them out this weekend.
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