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A Christmas Carol
BLU-RAY disk
Nov 29, 2010 By: J.A. Hamilton
A Christmas Carol order
Director:
Robert Zemeckis

Actors:
Jim Carey
Gary Oldman
Cary Elwes

Rating:
Movie:
Extras:
Overall:

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WHAT'S IT ABOUT?
The only thing Ebenezer Scrooge loves more than money is to hate Christmas. Set in his stingy ways (despite how much good heís capable of doing), three spirits decide to pay him a visit on Christmas Eve opening his eyes to the past, present and possible grim future if heís not willing to change.
IS IT A GOOD MOVIE?
Christmas time is here yet again, and what better way to ring in the holidays than yet another version of Charles Dickensí A CHRISTMAS CAROL. There are roughly fourteen versions of this tale spread around films and cartoon features, each with their own special spin on things but one thing that never changes is how great a tale this truly is. Itís for this reason that I thoroughly enjoyed Disneyís newest version and who better to play the old humbug than the Grinch himself, Jim Carrey.

Iím a huge fan of Robert Zemeckis (who isnít really) and was happy to see him both behind the camera and doing the pen work. I loved WHO FRAMED ROGER RABBIT and how Zemeckis took animated characters to a more serious level. The tone of this film is what makes it shine for me, that and the grittier animation that quite easily comes off as eerie at times. Naturally I wasnít scared but I can see how this one might not be the best version to show your kids. Thereís definitely a darkness surrounding Scrooge this time around and considering the fact heís being visited by spirits after-all, I was happy to see the story treated a bit more seriously this time around.

The spirits themselves were the big hits for me. I enjoyed Marleyís chains as well as his anger, he comes off as convincing for a damned soul, something thatís been somewhat dummied down in other versions. The first spirit looked cool conceptually, I dug the flame and how he bobbled his head back and forth. The second spiritís goofy laughter got on my nerves rather quickly as the guy couldnít say two words without laughing like a fool (he does however make quite an interesting religious statement that raised an eyebrow). The final spirit was my favourite; I loved the shadow imagery, the horses and coach, everything about this visit kicked ass and was a blast to watch.

A CHRISTMAS CAROL is obviously the same story here as it is everywhere else but again, if youíre going to make another version of a Christmas story this is the one to use. I was always partial to the original Disney version with Mickey and Scrooge, having watched it every year religiously as a kid growing up but this Disney version bridges the gap into adulthood rather nicely. I do still enjoy Jim Carrey and donít feel he got to shine here anywhere close to how he did in THE GRINCH WHO STOLE CHRISTMAS and as for his career, I hope heís not done with comedy just yet as Iím sure heís got a couple good hits left in him.
THE EXTRAS
Capturing Dickens: A Novel Retelling: Animation has indeed come a long way but as you can see here, the actors now play a much larger role in the process than simply lending their voices. Talk about a full body workout.

Countdown to Christmas Interactive Calendar: This is a cool feature if you plan on throwing this Blu-ray into your system every day until Christmas. Though you do get to see a cool toy behind every door, most people would probably rather have a chocolate.

On Set with Sammi: One of the children from the cast lead us through a quick day of what itís like shooting on set. This chick played one of the little zombie kids that scared the hell out of my girlfriend.

Deleted Scenes: Thereís a little over eight minutes worth of unfinished scenes here; nothing too special, but I had fun seeing these scenes unfold in various stages of creation.

Previews: There are lots of trailers to choose from, a couple advertisements about Blu-rays and Digital Copies, a Timon and Pumbaa advertisement for Disney 3D movies and this package also includes a DVD Copy of the film.
FINAL DIAGNOSIS
Iím not too fond of winter but I do love Christmas. I donít spend a lot of time watching Christmas movies (I usually do make time for JINGLE ALL THE WAY, I know, I know but I canít help myself) but this is one story that never gets old. If you donít own a version of this great film yet, this would be a good one to pick up.
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12:32PM on 11/29/2010
I was pleasantly surprised by this. Aside from the bizzare stylistic choice of making Bob Crachit a troll, and the awkward shrinking bit, this was a lot of fun.
I was pleasantly surprised by this. Aside from the bizzare stylistic choice of making Bob Crachit a troll, and the awkward shrinking bit, this was a lot of fun.
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