Picture from A Christmas Carol
Overall A

This 1951 adaptation of Charles Dickens' well-known story A Christmas Carol is a black and white version of the holiday classic. It stars Alastair Sim as the miserly Scrooge.

Violence B+
Sexual Content A
Profanity A
Substance Use A-

MPAA Rating: Not Rated

A Christmas Carol

The most recent home video release of this movie is November 1, 2011. Here are some details…

Home Video Notes: A Christmas Carol: 60th Anniversary Diamond Edition (1951)

Release Date: November 1, 2011

A Christmas Carol releases to DVD and Blu-ray in a 60th Anniversary Diamond Edition on November 1, 2011. (The Blu-ray has been digitally restored from a new 1080p, 24fps high definition transfer master produced from the 35mm negative and fine grain.)

- Commentary Tracks By Marcus Hearn and George Cole

- Introduction by Leonard Maltin

- Dead to Begin With: The Darker Side of A Classic—Documentary exploring the films bleaker themes and how they rivaled London of the 1950’s. Featuring British film historian and culturalist Sir Christopher Frayling. (25 mins)

-Scrooge By Another Name: Distributing A Christmas Carol—Featurette detailing the American release of this British holiday classic. Featuring US distributor Richard Gordon. (10 mins)

- The Human Blarney Stone: Life and Films of Brian Desmond Hurst—Documentary chronicling the life of Ireland’s most prolific filmmaker. Featuring Allan Esler Smith, the great, great nephew and biographer of Hurst. (40 mins)

- A Scholar’s View—Video narrative by Fred Guida, author of A Christmas Carol and Its Adaptations (35 mins)

-Silent Dickens—Collection of early examples of Dickens on film. (includes HD: Scrooge -1922, Bleak House 20 mins)

Bonus DVD

- More Silent Dickens (A Christmas Carol 1914, Scrooge, or Marley s Ghost 1901, Scrooge 1913)

- Campbell’s Playhouse: A Christmas Carol—Digitally remastered version of original 1939 radio dramatization, narrated by Orson Welles and starring Lionel Barrymore. (Audio only. 54 mins)

- Bibliographic Essay—by Fred Guida (10 mins)

Holding true to the literary masterpiece on which it is based, the 1951 rendition of A Christmas Carol (also known as Scrooge in the UK) provides a perfect Ebenezer Scrooge thanks to the masterful performance of Alastair Sim. You’ll laugh, you’ll cry and you’ll be reminded that giving of oneself is where the true joy of Christmas will be found. You’ll also have an opportunity to explain to your children that all TV used to be black and white (that’s why it was called the dark ages…right?)  Parents should also be aware that youngsters might find the ghosts a little frightening.

Related home video titles:

For a lighter (and more colorful) interpretation of this story try A Muppet Christmas Carol. Another Christmas film that explores the value of selfless giving is It’s A Wonderful Life.