Wednesday, December 16, 2009

A changed man

Dickens' A Christmas Carol has become the most familiar Christmas story of all time. Life Magazine did a layout in its December 25, 1944 issue, featuring actor Lionel Barrymore as Scrooge.

According to the article Barrymore had done an annual radio play of A Christmas Carol for years. That sounds like a wonderful tradition for families, gather around the radio and listen to the familiar story. The Life layout was set up in such an elaborate fashion just for the magazine, photographed by Ralph Crane. The costuming and settings look great.Too bad Mr. Barrymore didn't do a movie version of the story. We have several available now and we love every one of them. I'd love to see this version on film.

You can read A Christmas Carol as either a straight ghost story or as allegory, but it works either way.It is mainly a story of redemption. When Scrooge comes to the window on Christmas morning to hail the passing boy we are assured that he's a changed person.

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