Thursday, 24 December 2015

It's a Wonderful Life Review

It's a Wonderful Life

Release Date: 16th October 1947 - Australia 

Production Companies 
Liberty Films

Paramount Pictures Australia 

Genre: Drama

Rating: G

Runtime: 130 minutes

Budget: $3,180,000

Box Office Gross: $9,576,159

Plot Summary
George Bailey has so many 
problems he is thinking 
about ending it all - and 
it's Christmas! As the 
angels discuss George, 
we see his life in flashback. 
As George is about to 
jump from a bridge, he 
ends up rescuing his 
guardian angel, Clarence. 
Clarence then shows 
George what his town 
would have looked like if 
it hadn't been for all of his 
good deeds over the years. 
Will Clarence be able to 
convince George to return 
to return to his family and 
forget suicide?

James Stewart - George Bailey
Donna Reed - Mary Hatch
Henry Travers - Clarence
Lionel Barrymore - Mr. Potter
Thomas Mitchell - Uncle Billy
Beulah Bondi - Ma Bailey
Frank Faylen - Ernie
Ward Bond - Bert
Gloria Grahame - Violet
H.B. Warner - Mr. Gower
Todd Karns - Harry Bailey
Samuel S. Hinds - Pa Bailey
Mary Treen - Cousin Billy
Frank Albertson - Sam Wainwright 
Virginia Patton - Ruth Dakin
Charles Williams - Cousin Eustace
Sarah Edwards - Mrs. Hatch
William Edmunds - Mr. Martini
Lillian Randolph - Annie
Argentina Brunetti - Mrs. Martini
Robert J. Anderson - Little George
Ronnie Ralph - Little Sam
Jean Gale - Little Mary
Jeanine Anne Rose - Little Violet
Danny Murmett - Little Marty Hatch
Georgie Nokes - Little Harry Bailey
Sheldon Leonard - Nick
Carol Coombs - Janie Bailey
Karolyn Grimes - Zuzu Bailey 
Larry Simms - Pete Bailey
Jimmy Hawkins - Tommy Bailey
Carl Switzer - Freddie Othello (Cameo)

Screenplay/Producer/Director - Frank Capra
Story - Phillip Van Doren Stern 
Screenplay - Frances Goodrich and
Albert Hackett 
Additional Scenes - Jo Swerling
Contributor to Screenplay - Michael Wilson (Uncredited)
Art Director - Jack Okey
Costumes - Edward Stevenson
Directors of Photography - Joseph F. Biroc,
Joseph Walker and Victor Milner
Special Photographic Effects - Russell A. Calley
Film Editor - William Hornbeck
Music - Dimitri Tiomkin


1947 Academy Awards
Best Picture (Nominated)
Best Director - Frank Capra (Nominated)
Best Actor in a Leading Role - James Stewart (Nominated)
Best Sound, Recording - John Aalberg (Nominated)
Best Film Editing - William Hornbeck (Nominated)

Season's greetings, everyone! If there is one movie I have to review before the end of Christmas, it'll have to be IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE which is said as one of the holiday's greatest movies by many critics. Since then, the film has gone to become a timeless classic and is considered by anyone who have seen it. I have never been anxious to watch this golden oldie for the first time before Christmas Eve and many years, I have been dying to see it of its original story not unlike those television episodes and other movies that parody its conception. Personally, I would have find IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE to be quite melodramatic just because the film isn't that endearing, but it has its special meaning and value that we've all learned from our experiences that the greatest gift is life. The late Frank Capra is a fabulous director who uses his creative philosophies to get at where he is at and he said that it was his own personal favourite but this is his last great picture to date and what a shame, there is to all of us.

Fortunately, the acting of this film doesn't mire it down completely with such notable names as James Stewart, Donna Reed and Lionel Barrymore. I heard so much about James and his versatility but I never knew that he would act like this as his character starts as an optimist to a very troubled soul who is at its wit's end. I knew this is too good to be true but James Stewart is the movie's best actor and its good luck charm. 

IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE may still remain in our hearts as a cultural heritage and a holiday classic that most young people wouldn't have remembered it when they remained unaware of its existence. Eventually, I'll get around of watching it on next Christmas and you should too when you wait until the twelfth month reaches.

Star rating: (8/10) Very Good Movie 

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