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Scrooge U: Part XXXVII -- Ahrens & Menken deliver delightful "A Christmas Carol: The Musical"
"Tell the truth. You're getting kind of tired of writing about ' A Christmas Carol ,' aren't you?" No, this wasn't an e-mail that some disgruntled JHM reader sent me. But -- rather -- the ever-wise & patient Nancy (Who -- FYI -- has been formatting each & every one...
28 Dec 2006
Scrooge U: Part XXXV -- How "A Carol Christmas" kick-started William Shatner's career
Are you a fan of William Shatner 's Emmy Award-winning work on ABC 's " Boston Legal "? If so, then you should be aware that one of the main reasons that William was cast as daffy Denny Crane was because " The Practice " creator David E. Kelley supposedly caught Shatner's...
26 Dec 2006
Scrooge U: Part XXXI -- "A Diva's Christmas Carol" puts a silly but cynical spin on the season
Some adaptations of "A Christmas Carol" are like a huge holiday meal. Rich, meaty, memorable. Really stick-to-your-ribs kind of shows. And then there are those holiday specials like " A Diva's Christmas Caro l." Which are the television equivalent of Chinese food. Don't get...
22 Dec 2006
Scrooge U : Part XXIX -- "An All Dogs Christmas Carol" is mutt ado about nothing
Well, at least there's some truth-in-advertising to be found in this 1998 home premiere. For -- though " An All Dogs Christmas Carol " may not actually be an adaptation of Charles Dickens' classic tale -- this holiday special is definitely a dog. Copyright 1998 Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Animation...
20 Dec 2006
Scrooge U: Part XXVIII -- "Ms. Scrooge" is kind of hit & ms. ... er ... miss
As I mentioned in this past Sunday's review of " Ebbie ," " A Christmas Carol " is a surprisingly resilient story. It can survive a change of location or time period. Even giving Ebenezer Scrooge a sex change operation doesn't necessarily undercut the emotional effectiveness...
19 Dec 2006
Scrooge U : Part XXVI -- "Ebenezer" is just " ... blah-blah-blah"
On paper, this sounds like such a clever idea. Shifting the location of "A Christmas Carol" out to the Old West. I mean, what better place is there to tell a ghost story than around a campfire? And then the truly genius notion of hiring Academy Award-winner Jack Palance to play a westernized...
17 Dec 2006
Scrooge U : Part XIX -- Missing scene mars "Muppet Christmas Carol"
Just how good is The Muppet Christmas Carol "? Well, to be honest, that depends on whether or not you saw the version that ran in theaters back in 1992 OR the version of this Brian Henson film that now runs on television and/or is currently available for sale on DVD. "What's the difference...
10 Dec 2006
Scrooge U : Part X -- A second chance fumbled
I don't really need to explain who Basil Rathbone was, right? I mean, we're talking about the acclaimed actor who crossed swords with Errol Flynn in " The Adventures of Robin Hood ," traded quips with Danny Kaye in " The Court Jester " and even served as the narrator of the...
1 Dec 2006
Scrooge U : Part IX -- Little's special is a lot of fun
It is one of my favorite Hollywood "What If" stories. And -- appropriately enough -- you can read a full-blown account of this tale over on one of my favorite blogs, Mark Evanier's great " newsfromme.com ." Here's the Reader's Digest version: W.C. Fields (Who was a Dickens...
30 Nov 2006
Scrooge U : Part VIII -- Williams wins an Oscar
Okay. I know. We all love those moments in "A Christmas Carol" after Scrooge has been redeemed. When the old skinflint tries to make amends to all those he's wronged over the years. That's when Dickens' classic holiday tale becomes truly heart-warming. But -- prior to this point...
29 Nov 2006
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