Miracle on 34th Street

Miracle on 34th Street

Fielder Cook (1973)

U Certificate
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Review

Our Score
A singing Sebastian Cabot tries to prove he's the real Santa Claus in this perfunctory 1973 version of the much-loved festive fantasy. But despite the odd twinkle, he just hasn't enough warmth and charm to make his Kris Kringle entirely believable, which renders the tale flat and forgettable compared with both the classic 1947 original and the 1994 remake with Richard Attenborough. Still, Cabot outdoes the rest of the cast whose predominantly stagey or ineffective performances constantly emphasise you're watching a TV movie. Roddy McDowall is particularly unconvincing as the scenery-chewing psychiatrist pushing to get Kringle sectioned, while cynical youngster Suzanne Davidson lacks the heart-melting qualities shared by her predecessor Natalie Wood and successor Mara Wilson. The biggest weakness, though, is Fielder Cook's direction, with superficially handled events leaving even the climactic moments short on magic and emotional impact.

Summary

Christmas fantasy about a popular New York department store Santa Claus who brings joy into the hearts of the city's children by claiming to be the genuine article - but ends up in court for his trouble. Jane Alexander and Roddy McDowall star in this remake of the 1947 classic.

Cast & Crew

Kris Kringle Sebastian Cabot
Karen Walker Jane Alexander
Bill Schaffner David Hartman
Dr Henry Sawyer Roddy McDowall
Horace Shellhammer Jim Backus
Susan Walker Suzanne Davidson
RH Macy David Doyle
Judge Harper Tom Bosley
Director Fielder Cook
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Other Information

Language: EnglishColour
Drama