Monday, February 27, 2017

Henry Winkler in An American Christmas Carol: Review by William Mortensen Vaughan

TitleAn American Christmas Carol
My Rating****

Adaptation:  Starring Henry Winkler as "the Scrooge," Benedict Slade

Year Released1979

Format:  DVD,
live-action, film

Is this adaptation reverentYes, this adaptation is reverent.  It includes the hymn "God Rest Ye, Merry Gentlemen."

Does it include the phrase, "God bless us..."No.

What does my wife think of it
She doesn't like it.  She thinks Henry Winkler looks like Dr. Phibes, which gives her the creeps.

How closely does this adaptation follow the original novel, by Charles Dickens?  This adaptation recreates the general story line of the novel, with different characters (
Benedict Slade, instead of Ebenezer Scrooge, for example). 

He has an employee, named Mr. Thatcher, whom he fires.  Mr. Thatcher has a son who uses crutches and has a disease.

After Mr. Slade fires Mr. Thatcher, the ghost of his partner, Jack Latham, appears to him, and tells him that he will receive visitations from three other ghosts.

The Ghosts of Christmas Past, Present, and Future appear in the guises of the three men whose belongings Mr. Slade repossesses. 

After seeing the visions they show him, Mr. Slade rehires Mr. Thatcher, and promotes him.  He also gives his son tickets to visit a doctor whom he believes will heal him.

Then he takes Mr. Thatcher around to give back property they'd repossessed.   

What dialect is used?  Plain English.

When and where does this adaptation take place?  This adaptation takes place in Concord, in Merrimack County, New Hampshire, during the Twentieth Century, spanning the Presidencies of Herbert Hoover and Franklin D. Roosevelt.

Is this adaptation a prequel or a sequel?  No.

Is this adaptation supernatural? 
Yes, this adaptation is supernatural, featuring ghosts and time travel.
Is this adaptation "framed"

What original musical numbers and/or dance routines are included[TBC]

How attractive is the visual art?  The set, wardrobe, architecture, and art are good.

How creative and instense are the transitions, especially when "the Scrooge" is taken from one time and/or place to another?
  The transitions are fair, involving mostly cameras cutting to the next scenes.

What is the most remarkable thing about this adaptationThe most remarkable thing about this adaptation is, perhaps, seeing Henry Winkler 1) in a role other than "the Fonz" on "Happy Days," and 2) old, which doesn't work for me, after all the hours I spent watching "Happy Days."  Henry Winkler will always be "the Fonz" to me.

What extras are included on the DVD[TBC]

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