Scrooge (1951) Plot
Alright, my fellow movie buffs, let me give you the lowdown on this timeless flick featuring the legendary Scrooge. It all goes down on Christmas Eve back in 1843, where we meet Ebenezer Scrooge, a real tightwad who ain’t got no plans to celebrate Christmas. He makes it crystal clear to two businessmen that he’s not in the mood for any holiday cheer. And get this, when two fellas come around collecting for the poor, he shuts them down too. What a Scrooge, am I right?
But wait, there’s more! His nephew, Fred, extends an invite to a delicious Christmas dinner, but Scrooge shuts him down too, dissing him for tying the knot. The only kindness he musters up is giving his poor clerk, Bob Cratchit, the day off on Christmas since there’s no work to be done. But mark my words, he expects Bob to be back to the grindstone extra early the next day. Scrooge heads home and lo and behold, he sees his doorknocker transform into the face of his deceased partner, Jacob Marley. Spooky, right? But it doesn’t end there.
Inside his house, Jacob Marley’s ghost appears before Scrooge, giving him a serious warning. He tells Scrooge that if he doesn’t change his ways, he’ll be stuck in chains, roaming the Earth for eternity after he kicks the bucket. Quite the wakeup call, I’d say. But that’s not all. Marley lets Scrooge know that he’s about to get some visitors—three spirits, to be exact. The first one’s showing up at one o’clock in the morning. Scared out of his wits, Scrooge runs to his bed, seeking refuge from this ghostly ordeal.
And wouldn’t you know it, right on the dot, the Ghost of Christmas Past appears. This spirit takes Scrooge on a trip down memory lane, showing him his lonely school days, rejected by his old man ever since his mother died during childbirth. But there’s a glimmer of hope when Scrooge’s sister, Fan, arrives to bring him home, telling him that their father’s had a change of heart towards him. Then things get interesting as the spirit reveals a Christmas party hosted by Scrooge’s former kind-hearted employer, Fezziwig. Scrooge even sees the moment he proposed to his sweetheart, Alice, and she said yes! But trouble brews when Scrooge decides to leave Fezziwig’s for a business venture led by Mr. Jorkin, where he meets Jacob Marley for the first time. It turns out Alice breaks off their engagement because Scrooge’s heart is all consumed by his love for money. And if that wasn’t enough, Scrooge witnesses the heartbreaking death of his sister Fan, who had just given birth to his nephew Fred. And guess what? He misses her dying wish for him to take care of her son. Talk about regrets.
Fast forward a few years, Scrooge and Marley find out that Jorkin’s been playing dirty and embezzling funds from their now bankrupt company. But they do the right thing and repay the missing money, with one condition—they take over the company. Then we jump to Christmas Eve in 1836, when Scrooge refuses to leave work early to visit Marley on his deathbed. When he finally shows up, Marley, aware of the consequences awaiting him, tries to warn Scrooge about his greedy ways. The spirit gives Scrooge a hard time about taking Marley’s money and house, and before he knows it, Scrooge’s back in his bed, feeling mighty ashamed.
Next up, Scrooge meets the Ghost of Christmas Present, who takes him on a tour to witness how folks with goodwill celebrate the holiday. They visit joyful miners singing Christmas carols and the heartwarming Christmas feast of the Cratchit family on Christmas Day. Scrooge, concerned about their disabled son Tiny Tim, asks the spirit if he’ll make it, but the spirit implies that things won’t turn out well unless the future changes. They also swing by Fred’s Christmas shindig, where he stands up for his uncle against some rude comments from the guests. Meanwhile, Alice’s working at a poorhouse, caring for the sick and homeless with all her love. Scrooge, feeling moved by what he sees, can’t bring himself to admit that he could benefit from this experience. And then, boom, the spirit reveals two starved children representing Ignorance and Want, and they throw Scrooge’s very own words back at him when he shows concern for their well-being. Ouch!
Finally, Scrooge comes face to face with the Ghost of Christmas Yet-to-Come. This spirit shows him the Cratchit family mourning the death of Tiny Tim. Then he witnesses three people, including Mrs. Dilber, the charwoman, selling off the belongings of a deceased man. He even overhears two businessmen discussing the upcoming funeral of this mystery man. But when Scrooge sees the man’s gravestone with his own name on it, he pleads with the spirit for a second chance, admitting that he’s not the same person he used to be. And just like that, he wakes up in his own bed, only to find out from Mrs. Dilber that it’s Christmas Day! Oh, the joy! Scrooge realizes he still has a chance to make things right. With a newfound spirit of generosity, he anonymously buys a big, juicy turkey for the Cratchit family and sends it their way as a gift. And that’s not all—he surprises Fred by showing up at his dinner party and even gets his groove on, dancing with his niece-in-law.
The day after, Scrooge plays a little prank on Bob Cratchit, making him think he’s in trouble for being late. But instead, Scrooge raises his salary and promises to help out Bob’s family. Can you believe it? Scrooge becomes the finest man the city’s ever known, like a shining beacon of goodness. And you know what? He becomes a second father to Tiny Tim, who doesn’t die but actually recovers! This tale is all about redemption, my friends, and it shows us that it’s never too late to change our ways and spread some holiday cheer.
So, grab some popcorn, settle in, and get ready to be moved by the incredible journey of Scrooge. This movie will warm your heart, make you reflect on the true spirit of Christmas, and remind you that even the biggest Scrooge can transform into a compassionate soul. Don’t miss out on this holiday masterpiece!
Scrooge (1951) Cast
- Alastair Sim as Ebenezer Scrooge
- Kathleen Harrison as Mrs. Dilber, Charwoman
- Mervyn Johns as Bob Cratchit
- Hermione Baddeley as Mrs. Cratchit
- Michael Hordern as Jacob Marley’s Ghost
- George Cole as Young Ebenezer Scrooge
- Glyn Dearman as Tiny Tim
- John Charlesworth as Peter Cratchit
- Michael J. Dolan as the Ghost of Christmas Past
- Francis de Wolff as the Ghost of Christmas Present
- Czesław Konarski as the Ghost of Christmas Yet-to-Come
- Rona Anderson as Alice, Scrooge’s past fiancée
- Carol Marsh as Fan “Fanny” Scrooge
- Jack Warner as Mr. Jorkin, Scrooge’s second employer
- Roddy Hughes as Mr. Fezziwig, Scrooge’s first employer
- Patrick Macnee as the Young Jacob Marley
- Brian Worth as Fred, Scrooge’s nephew
- Olga Edwardes as Fred’s wife
- Miles Malleson as Old Joe
- Ernest Thesiger as Mr. Stretch (the undertaker)
- Louise Hampton as the Laundress
- Peter Bull as First Businessman at exchange (also Narrator)
- Douglas Muir as Second Businessman at exchange
- Noel Howlett as First Collector for people in need
- Fred Johnson as Second Collector for people in need
- Eliot Makeham as Mr. Snedrig
- Henry Hewitt as Mr. Rosebed
- Hugh Dempster as Mr. Groper
- Eleanor Summerfield as Miss Flora, Fred’s party guest
- Richard Pearson as Mr. Tupper, Fred’s party guest
- Clifford Mollison as Samuel Wilkins, Scrooge’s poor client
- Hattie Jacques as Mrs. Fezziwig
- Theresa Derrington as Fred’s Maid
- David Hannaford as Boy buying prize turkey
- Catherine Leach as Belinda Cratchit
- Moiya Kelly as Martha Cratchit
- Luanne Kemp as Mary Cratchit
- Maire O’Neill as older Alice at the Charity Hospital
- Anthony Wager as Mr. Fezziwig’s Lad
- Derek Stephens as a Dancer at Fezziwig’s
- Vi Kaley as Old Lady sitting by stove at the Charity Hospital
Scrooge (1951) Review
Let me tell you, this right here is the ultimate film adaptation of “A Christmas Carol.” Hands down, no contest! Alastair Sim takes on the role of the titular character, and let me tell ya, he’s absolutely marvelous. This Scrooge is the epitome of bitter and mean, the crème de la crème of all the Scrooges I’ve ever laid my eyes on. And believe me, I’ve seen about 8 different versions of this story on film. But Sim’s performance takes the cake, my friends. His transformation from a grumpy old miser to a jolly soul is downright Disneyesque in its gleefulness.
Now, let’s talk about the faithfulness of this adaptation. The dialogue is as close to the original book as it gets. They didn’t stray far, and that’s a good thing. The supporting cast delivers stellar performances in their respective roles. And can we take a moment to appreciate the sets? They’re pretty darn accurate, depicting the period just right. Oh, and let’s not forget the music. “Barbara Allen” is an old tune that goes way back, like 1666 back. It adds that extra touch of authenticity, you know?
Here’s the kicker, folks. I’ve made it a tradition to watch this film every single year for a whopping 50 years now. It’s a must-watch during the Christmas season because it captures the essence of Charles Dickens’ message oh-so-well. This movie manages to convey the true meaning behind the tale in a way that resonates with my soul. And that, my friends, is why it holds a special place in my heart.
So, gather ’round the screen, grab some hot cocoa, and get ready to be swept away by the magic of this version of “A Christmas Carol.” It’s a timeless classic that brings Dickens’ story to life in the most remarkable way. Believe me, you don’t want to miss out on this one. It’s an annual dose of holiday goodness that will warm your heart and remind you of the true spirit of Christmas.
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