Writer: Mitch Glazer, Michael O’Donoghue (Screenplay) Charles Dickens (Novel)
Starring: Bill Murray, Karen Allen, John Forsythe, John Glover, Bobcat Goldthwait
Plot: A selfish, cynical T.V. executive is haunted by three spirits bearing lessons on Christmas Eve.
Tagline – The spirits will move you in odd and hysterical ways.
Runtime: 1 Hour 41 Minutes
There may be spoilers the rest of the review
Verdict: Nice Reimagining of Christmas Carol
Story: Scrooged starts as we meet TV executive Frank Cross (Murray) who is preparing the Christmas line up with his own live production of Scrooge. He puts pressure on his assistant Grace, fires staff who go against him in Eliot (Goldthwait) and pushes the boundaries of television.
When Frank gets visited by his former boss Lew Hayward (Forsythe) he gets an encounter from beyond the grave that warns him he will get a visit from three ghosts over the next day to show him his past, present and future.
Thoughts on Scrooged
Characters – Frank Cross is the ruthless TV executive that sees Christmas as a chance to prove his value by getting the highest ratings, when he pushes people to far he gets a visit from three ghosts that show him the errors of his way, but can he change. Frank is one of the first characters in a Scrooge role that he is going on the same trip, so he doesn’t believe it on the same levels. Claire is the former love that Frank let go for his own career, she was the only person that could get through his selfish ways in the past.
Performances – This film is a Bill Murray vehicle, it was designed for his comic timing and quick wit as a stand-alone performer which is something he hasn’t done much previously. It is strange because I am not the biggest fan of his comedy, but in this role, I enjoyed his performance that is filled with arrogance to make us hate his character while also being able to sympathise with him. The rest of the cast work well for the film that show us how Murray can get the best out of many different talents.
Story – The story is a different take on the classic Christmas Carol, first the film shows characters who know the story, so they know where the ghosts are taking them, which is different and refreshing to see. I can see the traditionalist not enjoying this version, but let’s be honest how many times can you tell the same story? the problems I do have with the film is that we don’t get the full impact of what the supporting characters of the story get enough time see their impact on the story, in the way they were originally designed.
Comedy/Fantasy/Romance – The comedy comes from Bill Murray, it only comes around him which can give and take from the bigger picture too often, the fantasy and romance both suffer in the same feint.
Settings – The film is mostly set inside the TV studio showing how Frank sees the characters and the production going on and how he treats them.
Special Effects – While the effects are not used very often, but when they do they all work very well for the film.
Final Thoughts – If you want to see a different version of the Christmas Carol, this works because it brings us into a world where the book exists.
Overall: Nice little Christmas Film.