1. It’s about Christmas.
2. The middle section dealing with the ghosts of past, present and future drags mightily, and the special effects are risible even by 1950s standards.
3. There are far too many religious references in it.
4. Tiny Tim. He’d be OK if he was a snotty-nosed, obstreperous little tyke called Charlie, but the combination of alliteration and mawkishness has to be the all-time literary disaster. And it’s my opinion that the line ‘God bless us every one’ should have been edited out by the publisher on a non-negotiable basis, Dickens or no Dickens.
1. Alistair Sim. Brilliant.
2. Kathleen Harrison (Scrooge’s housekeeper.) Never fails to engage, whatever she does. Her line: 'A Christmas present? For me?' touched the strings admirably where the TT creature failed miserably.
3. Marley makes an excellent ghost.
4. The pre-visitation Scrooge is compellingly hard.
5. The post-visitation Scrooge is delightfully dotty.
6. It’s about a man being rescued from a dark place. That’s the clincher. Stories of people coming out of the dark and into the light never fail to move me. (Pity it had to be at Christmas.)
* * *
And talking of God (sort of, briefly) I have a trivial question for you Germans out there:
You know how there’s a trend these days for people to liberally scatter ‘OMG!’ all over emails, YouTube comments and so on? Do Germans liberally scatter ‘GIH!’?