Grab an econo-pack of tissues, gather your loved ones around a cozy television, and bring on the hot cocoa--it's time for a dose of Christmas spirit. The tender and charming Mary Steenburgen (Parenthood) dons a sour disp... more »osition in her role as Ginny Grainger, a woman who finds little joy in life lately--let alone in the impending holiday season. Money is tight, her husband (beautifully downplayed by nice-guy Gary Basaraba) lost his job, and the family must move out of their house. Ginny cannot even bring herself to say, "Merry Christmas," despite her family's enthusiasm about the big day. With help from Ginny's brave and loving daughter (sweetly performed by Elisabeth Harnois) and a Christmas angel named Gideon (Harry Dean Stanton), Ginny undergoes a life-altering experience ā la It's a Wonderful Life. The result? Happy endings, hugs and kisses, pass the tissues. Not a light holiday entertainer by any means, the plot verges on depressing at times, as the family struggles through money issues and the tedium of daily suburban survival. While handled fairly subtly, some of the bridging story--including a shooting, a kidnapping, and a drowning--might prove disturbing to children under 6 years old. And really: if the somber Harry Dean Stanton (Paris, Texas) repeatedly appeared in your neighborhood, cloaked in a cowboy hat and overcoat, would you allow your kids outside? Still, a well-made favorite to cherish. --Liane Thomas« less
"This is a great OVERLOOKED CLASSIC movie to watch all year round especially during the holiday season. Now available on DVD in a WideScreen format!!
One Magic Christmas is a classic story about a struggling family who lost the Holiday Spirit and the mother the belief of "Merry Christmas". Through some hair raising events they regain their faith and belief in themselves and others.
In Summary: A Christmas Angel (Harry Dean Stanton) is sent to help a family re-discover the "Spirit of Christmas". The Angel uses the daughter (you'll love this 7 year old, Elisabeth Harnois - the cutest girl with the most adorable blue eyes) to help restore her mother's (Mary Steenbergen) lost Christmas Spirit and belief in "MERRY CHRISTMAS".
Through some tough choices & lessons the mother has her faith in her fellow man, family and the Christmas Spirit restored.
The Angel and the daughter's beliefs guide us through the events and we even get a trip to the "North Pole and see Mr & Mrs Santa Claus!!!! With the comfort and protection of the Christmas Angel our journey is both eye opening and satisfying.
A Christmas Classic to add to your DVD holiday collection.
This is "ONE MAGIC CHRISTMAS" you won't forget!!!!!!!"
A Good Message on One Front
KittyKins | 12/08/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)
"One of those depressing Christmas flicks with a happy ending, this truly family movie has a good message about remembering what is really important in life. The main character, Ginny, is caught up in her her own problems and worries. She has lost her Christmas spirit and has forgotten how important her loved ones are to her. On a cautionary note, this film is different from other movies such as "It's a Wonderful Life" and "The Preacher's Wife" in that the angel seems to be a representative of Santa Claus, setting up good 'ol St. Nick to be a God-like figure. When tragedy strikes the family (not too much detail here so as not to spoil the movie if you haven't seen it yet) the angel takes Ginny's young daughter to Santa Claus. He tells her he can't solve her problem, but that her mother has the power to do it herself. The turning point in the movie left me wondering how it exactly happened, but it is a movie with a supernatural theme so this is part of the charm. Good acting by all the cast. A movie that the whole family can enjoy."
A truly AWFUL movie to watch with your young child
Anne Wiebe | Austin, TX United States | 12/14/2007
(1 out of 5 stars)
"When my daughter was 6, I rented this movie; it was Disney, it was a Christmas movie, children in the cast, Mary Steenbergen -- it had to be good! We settled down to watch, to have a nice happy Christmas movie at home.
Okay, movie starts: Movie starts, some family discussion, not very happy. Dad takes the kids in the car and heads to the bank. He leaves the kids in the car and goes in. Suddenly -- there's a robbery, and BAM! the dad is SHOT DEAD! My daughter was horrified! Then the killer/robber runs out the door and HOPS INTO THE CAR with the kids! Good Lord! My daughter screamed! Then the robber/killer drives the kids off a bridge and the car with kids falls into the frozen river! My daughter started screaming really loudly; at this point, she was hysterical. This is NOT NOT NOT NOT NOT a movie for little kids. IT DOESN'T MATTER what happens next in the plot, the emotional bludgeoning that my daughter underwent in the first part of this movie was absolutely not something I would ever recommend for a warm and fuzzy evening in December with your family. You just don't show the dad being shot and the kids plunged into a river, not to children! WHAT were they thinking?! This appears to be marketed to families, and there was no clue that it was going to be so rough; it's NOT appropriate at all."
My favorite Christmas movie of all time.
Marc Dalesandro | Dartmouth, Nova Scotia Canada | 12/21/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
""One Magic Christmas" is a true classic, an underappreciated gem of a movie whose reputation will only grow as time passes and those of us who grew up watching it gain influence over popular culture.
Forget "It's a Wonderful Life" and the rest. This is the best Christmas movie ever made.
Mary Steenburgen turns in the performance of her career as Ginny Granger, a woman who's lost not only the Christmas spirit but also her very soul amid financial problems, family issues, and the pressures of modern life. Its up to Christmas angel Gideon (Harry Dean Stanton), Santa Claus, and Ginny's own children to help her recover what she has lost.
The movie's plot is certainly dark, and a box of kleenex may be necessary for some scenes. The writing is superb and the acting first-rate throughout.
The alternate-reality loop (from when the lights go out to until the lights go back on) is a fairly unique device in mainstream Hollywood films (especially Disney ones).
Despite the rather dour situation the Granger family finds themselves in during most of the film, their series of unfortunate events has a very heartwarming - even triumphant - ending. And just when you think it's going to wrap up, the film gives you one more treat - as Ginny gets a glimpse of a very special Christmas visitor.
This movie is well worth the price. Order it today and experience what I believe is the best holdiay picture out there. Five stars!"
This movie will help you realize the true meaning of x-mas..
Nicole | San Diego, CA United States | 11/15/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Mary Steenburgen plays the part of the bitter and frustrated wife Ginny to perfection. I have never seen her play a role this before, it just truly shows what a great and versatile actress she is. The story is about a woman named Ginny who even when everyone else at Christmas seems bright and full of joy, she cannot even bring herself to say Merry Christmas. With money tight Ginny doesn't see why there is any need to be merry. She is the type of person who doesn't seem to appreciate anything she has especially her loving husband, and bright and imaginative kids. It isn't until one christmas when Ginny's daughter decides to do something about her mother to get her back into the christmas spirit and that's when she meets the kindhearted and wise angel Gideon played by Harry Dean Stanton. With the help of Gideon, and Santa Claus she is able to help her mom realize that she shouldn't take for granted everything she has and helps her realize the joy and magic of christmas that she knew when she was just a little girl. This is a beautiful movie and very well acted and with a very good message. Although there are some scenes which are too intense for younger kids like when Ginny's husband get's shot or her kids drown in the lake, but other than that this movie is something for young and old. It will help you realize the true meaning of christmas: family and just how special they are. One Magic Christmas truly is magical!"