A Christmas Carol 1938


Reginald Owen played the role of Mr. Scrooge originally planned for Lionel Barrymore, who dropped out for health reasons. I love this version because it starts out with a happy scene of slide-skating on the ice. Grown-ups behaving like children, love it.

This is far from the original story by Charles Dickens. This typical MGM version was purposely made more light hearted. There is no fiancee to jilt Ebeneezer and no phantoms wailing. The children known as Want and Ignorance were absent as well as the thieves splitting up his belongings at his death. Bob Cratchitt  and his wife are played by Gene and Kathleen Lockhart. He played the judge trying to commit Santa in Miracle on 34th Street and his real life daughter June played the same in this version. June Lockhart is known for her mom roles on Lassie and Lost in Space.

Each film had elements that I liked. Patrick Stewart was fabulous as Captain Picard but made a REALLY lousy Mr. Scrooge. I have not been able to watch his version more than once. I thought it was pretty bad. Just sayin.

I liked the fleshing out of the Cratchitt family, and the whimsical nature of this 1938 version, even if it’s different than the book. That’s what makes watching all of these so fun. Reginald Owen as Ebeneezer is not the best, and it seemed odd that Bob Cratchitt was so generously formed despite his meager salary and grocery budget. He also seems a tad too happy, but I still love this version.

It has been snowing all evening. Pretty unless you have to go out in it. My friend left on her trip today and I’ve begun my adventures babysitting Zippy. He is a 13 year old Bichon who is feeling his age.  She left some surprise gifts behind for my children and me, I was touched and feel rich inside. I sit inside, cozy and warm, while putting up decorations, waiting for my daughter’s arrival. I can’t help ache  for all the families grieving for there little ones tonight and many nights to come.

I have a dear friend heading into the last stage of Parkinson’s. He has refused a feeding tube and is tenderly being cared for by his family and wife at home.  He is an amazing man who shared some really personal experiences with me at a very low point in my life. It was life changing and I will be forever grateful. His legacies will live on. Life is full of the bittersweet. I have learned to experience joy when I find it, but the greatest gift is spreading it around.


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