Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Spirit of Christmas|
Genres: Drama, Kids & Family, Television
Studio: Arts Alliance America Release Date: 06/21/2006
A True Christmas Classis for 1960's East Coasters
Moneysaver4u | 12/01/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I remember watching "The Spirit of Christmas" around Christmas time in the 1960's while growing up in Philadelphia. We looked forward to watching it each year. When this special was shown, I loved watching the Norelco Electric Razor commercial* of Santa sliding up and down snow covered hills. Especially when we had tons of our own snow right outside of our windows for us to play in the next day.
I've been living on the West coast since 1969 and caught the tail end of this classic in 1995. I saw it was sponsored by The Bell System company and contacted them. They graciously sent me a free copy on VHS that also includes The Nativity story. I received it the day before Thanksgiving. It was a shear joy to see it again after so many years.
I thought it was only shown on the East coast, but a friend said that he remembers seeing it while growing up in California during the 1980s. (?)The VHS tape I have also has an intro from a blind institute showing volunteers making Braille Christmas books with stuffed Santas and reindeers on the pages for blind children.
I would say, buy it for your kids that are younger than six and only show them the classic once a year during Christmas. That way they will anticipate seeing it and will have fond memories of this great and wonderfully simple telling of the story, "The Night Before Christmas." Especially compared to what is available now.
I'm looking forward to receiving this version on DVD. It is mentioned that it was taken from Mabel Beaton's original print.
As another treat, add the DVD Humperdinck's "Hansel and Gretel: An Opera Fantasy" (1954). It's available on Amazon. It's done with stop action puppetry. It's a great intro to Opera for children and fun to watch around Halloween and even Christmas.
Watch it within 1-2 days of Christmas
W. Savage | Mechanicsburg, PA United States | 11/27/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This might be a bit slow for modern audiences, but for those old enough to remember this kind of show, it has a charm that today's digital animation could never duplicate. It's the kind of thing you should only watch on Christmas Eve, or maybe the night before, because it reminds me a lot of the programs they used to show on pre-cable TV the day or two right before Christmas, after a lot of the other stuff had already been aired in previous weeks. My main complaint about the presentation is that they took out the original Bell commercials, which is a shame because the introductions tease you about them and then don't deliver. However, it's fun to see the old Bell logo in the opening credits. (Bell sounds a lot more friendly than today's successors, by the way.) The Mabel Beaton interview is extremely slow -- grainy, with one camera, and she's up in years by the time it was done. But it does give you some insight into the whole puppeting process. I'd watch that once and stick to the Christmas specials yearly after that.
An Oddity of Christmas
Roy B. Harris II | Fayetteville TN & Palm Beach FL USA | 03/13/2009
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This movie was shown at school on an old reel-to-reel projector when I was in the third and fourth grade (I'm half a century in age). There are two marionette shows: one, The Night Before Christmas and two, The Nativity. The Night Before Christmas is funny as this was produced at a time when marionettes still possessed a jerky type of movement; yet, no one can be blaise about the skill it took to produce a quality film. Surely the producer and the puppeteers were masters of their craft at the time. The Nativity is a sweet film that would be especially good for very young children. I still watch this film with the same intensity that I felt when I was watching it in our school auditorium. This is a cinematic jewel and only a Scrooge would discount the films value in terms of creative and clean entertainment. If you are NOT nostalgic for an old-fashioned Christmas, keep your money; however, if you have children or grandchildren....or, if you are a child at heart, buy this delightful film. It might even become a Christmas tradition in your home and in your heart."
M. Miller | 02/02/2010
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I am a self proclaimed Christmas fanatic. I watch Christmas movies all year long and have an extensive collection of holiday films. Every year I try to find one worthy enough to add to my collection and this little special fits the bill.
I discovered the movie on a site called TV Party and after reading the short blurb on the site and viewing the screen cap that was included, my curiosity was piqued. So I went over to youtube to sample it, as I do with most films before buying them, and I instantly fell in love with its simplistic charm. The puppetry is primitive in a sense and yet brilliant for the time this was produced. Its very nostalgic, before the age of cgi and all those distracting special effects. From a gentler, simpler time.
I especially enjoyed the nativity segment and bought it just for that. Though there have been hundreds maybe even thousands of yuletide movies made since the dawn of cinema, there are few that touch on the nativity story. Even though the nativity segment is a mere 15 minutes, its the best interpretation I've ever seen."