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Christmas Carol - The Movie
Christmas Carol - The Movie
Actors: Simon Callow, Kate Winslet, Nicolas Cage, Jane Horrocks, Michael Gambon
Director: Jimmy T. Murakami
Genres: Action & Adventure, Indie & Art House, Animation
PG     2003     1hr 17min

Capture the spirit of Christmas with this delightful animated classic! Based on one of the most beloved holiday tales of all time and featuring the voices of some of today's brightest stars, this enchanting, heartwarming f...  more »

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Movie Details

Actors: Simon Callow, Kate Winslet, Nicolas Cage, Jane Horrocks, Michael Gambon
Director: Jimmy T. Murakami
Creators: Robert Llewellyn, Iain Harvey, Michael Algar, Nik Powell, Rainer Mockert, Charles Dickens, Piet Kroon
Genres: Action & Adventure, Indie & Art House, Animation
Sub-Genres: Nicolas Cage, Indie & Art House, Animation
Studio: MGM (Video & DVD)
Format: DVD - Color,Full Screen - Animated,Closed-captioned,Dubbed
DVD Release Date: 10/07/2003
Original Release Date: 01/01/2001
Theatrical Release Date: 01/01/2001
Release Year: 2003
Run Time: 1hr 17min
Screens: Color,Full Screen
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 3
Members Wishing: 0
MPAA Rating: PG (Parental Guidance Suggested)
Languages: English, French, Spanish

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Member Movie Reviews

Wayne F. (WWIIpfc) from COLORADO SPGS, CO
Reviewed on 12/3/2013...
The story was good, but I prefer real humans actors.
1 of 1 member(s) found this review helpful.

Movie Reviews

Great Voice Cast, Great Kate Winslet's Song & Poor Animation
Tsuyoshi | Kyoto, Japan | 11/05/2004
(2 out of 5 stars)

"Yet another 'Carol' has traditional 2-D animations with great voice cast -- Simon Callow, Kate Winslet, Jane Horrocks, Nicholas Cage, Rhys Ifans, Micheal Gambon, and Juliet Stevenson. You also have a chance to listen to Kate's sister Beth Wislet's voice (who can be seen in a film 'Bodywork') and plus, you hear beautiful songs by Welsh singer Charlotte Church and Kate Winslet herself! And Ms Winslet is very good at that.

So, you ask, why 2 stars? OK, listen up, please. The story is a famous one, so you don't need my summery. And Scrooge is anyway going to be a good guy. But the process is the point, or the life of the story, and the film misses it very wide.

In fact, Scrooge (Simon Callow) in the first act is totally a bad guy here, feeding a mice, giving a chunk of cheese. After showing another side of him, the film is very slow in establishing his character, which should be more simple. To make it worse, Scrooge. out of the window, throws a jug of cold water (and it's winter) upon the chorus group on the street singing, among which you see the face of Tiny Tim, poor boy, drenched to the skin. And ... sorry if I'm wrong, but -- Did Dickens write that way?

There are many, many, unnecessary addtions and changes, which I do not introduce here. The real problem is, however, the animation itself. Jimmy T. Murakami is best known for 'When the Wind Blows' a quiet but very unnerving animated film about two elderly man and wife, who too innocently follows the government guidance to make a handmade shelter for the coming nuclear war. His 2-D animatiton worked at that time, but after about 14 years, it is no longer possible to grab our attention with that technique without good storyteling, character, or original designs. This 'Christmas Carol' has none of them, just making itself look like a Cliff Note of animation.

Sorry if I sound harsh, but as to this eternal classc, there are better choices out there, Alastair Simm or the Muppets (with Michael Caine, and the film is good), so why not them? The only good thing I could find about this version is Kate Winslet's wonderful yuletide song, which deserves more attention.

[VHS VERSION] lacks the opening and ending live-action sections in which Simon Callow plays Charles Dickens himself, touring in Boston, America, in 1867 (Dickens's celebrated reading performance in mind). If you want to see everything of this film, DVD is a better choice."
A Wonderful film
W. R. Nichols Jr. | 04/17/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)

"I just watched this version of the classic tale, and I am moved to tears. Forget what others here have said commenting on the animation, and pay attention to the story. The animation was superb with great use of shading and cg blends.

More importantly, this film has heart. It emotes. It conveys with power the ideals Dickens intended in his tale. Honor Christmas everyday. Keep its meaning and joy in your heart.

The only other animated film I have ever seen that comes close to this level of stroy telling and emotion is Grave of the Fireflies.

Buy this one. You will not be dissapointed. Share it with the family. Watch it on Christmas Eve. Watch it in July. Watch it whenever.

~William Nichols~"
Passable Version But Flawed
W. R. Nichols Jr. | 11/09/2003
(3 out of 5 stars)

"This could have been an excellent animated version of "Christmas Carol" except the character design is seriously flawed. The backgrounds are beautiful, the story well told with some humerous additions, yet, in this day of CGI animation, the characters are FLAT. There is no shading of the characters, no folds in the clothing, even printed comic books have more dimention than these characters. This leads to a rather boring watching experience.On the disc's special features, the original live opening and closing are shown. They really are wonderful sequences and there is no explanation of why they were cut for the DVD version. They explain why the two mice are used throughout the film. They are a delightful addition to the story. There is a motivation as to why Scrooge becomes the unpleasant character he is concerning his loss of Belle in early life. She becomes a major character in this version and the idea works well even if it is not strictly Dickens. This is a decent version of the classic that could have been really wonderful if the animators had fully used the CGI shadings that the characters really need."