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I’d love to share The Man Who Invented Christmas movie review for those of you who are desperate for great clean family movies (like me!) for a family movie night. I stumbled upon the fact that right now, it’s streaming for free on Amazon Prime, so I watched it immediately. Whether or not you are a Charles Dickens fan or not, you’ll see that the movie trailer alone is fabulous. However, the storyline here turned out to be so much more than I ever saw coming.
The Man Who Invented Christmas details
movie: The Man Who Invented Christmas
cast: Dan Stevens, Christopher Plummer, Jonathan Pryce
runtime: 104 minutes
rating explanation: Parental Guidance Suggested
The following is the summary that Amazon gave this movie. “The Man Who Invented Christmas tells the magical journey that led to the creation of Ebenezer Scrooge (Christopher Plummer), Tiny Tim and other classic characters from A Christmas Carol. Directed by Bharat Nalluri (Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day), the film shows how Charles Dickens (Dan Stevens) mixed real-life inspirations with his vivid imagination to conjure up unforgettable characters and a timeless tale, forever changing the holiday season into the celebration we know today.”
The Man Who Invented Christmas movie review
The Man Who Invented Christmas movie review that follows is a loose guide to the film and any subjects that may cause discussion with your people. I try to watch and listen closely, but the only way to guarantee that this movie is suitable for your family is to preview it yourself.
intimacy: Nothing other than a couple marital kisses
language: There are only two words that I heard that might be considered colorful language.
“It’s damned expensive being a gentleman” is a sentence spoken by Charles about six minutes into the film as he walks along the sidewalk. I didn’t hear it the first time I watched. He has a British accent and the background noise makes it easy to miss.
“The Law is an ass. I believe you wrote that” is said by Charles’ wife after he says he should have been a lawyer. Those are the only ones that I heard.
violence/gross: In Charles’ flashbacks, there is a scene of a young boy sitting a dead rat on a table in front of another boy and those boys also get into a tussle and one is punched by the other one in the face.
use of substances: Champagne is ordered at his restaurant table and talked about. His friend drinks one sip.
overall messages: The importance of family, even in the midst of imperfections. Forgiveness is the answer no matter how hard to accomplish. Christmas can bring out the good in any of us – in all of us.
“How can I say, ‘No,’ if I can be useful – if I can lighten the burden of another?” ~Charles Dickens
I wondered why they chose the title like they did. Now that I’ve watched the movie, I get it. The Christian life and God are addressed and quoted in this movie. What it is showing is how the way we react (as humans living among each other) was changed after the release of The Christmas Carol.
In one important scene of the movie, Charles is pitching his idea for a Christmas story about a selfish, miserly man. His publishers tell him there’s not a market for Christmas books in London of the 1840s, saying, “Does anyone really celebrate Christmas anymore? It’s more or less just a day to pick a man’s pocket every 25th of December.”
Charles’ reply is, “It’s a Christmas book because Christmas is, or ought to be, the one time of year when men and women open their shut-up hearts and think of the people below them as if they really were fellow creatures to the grave and not another race of people altogether.”
GOOD, BAD, OR IN-BETWEEN
It was really nice to watch a blockbuster movie without any bad language or inappropriateness. The main reason I’m offering The Man Who Invented Christmas movie review is that I want to spread the word about wholesome movies that still exist! If it wasn’t for the one scene of an incident between Charles and another little boy, there would be no violence to speak of either (this was mild and short-lived).
The movie plot begins as Charles Dickens is basking in his success of Oliver Twist in 1842. A native of London, he decides to take a tour of America and is received as a literary genius at galas, receptions, dinners, parties, etc.
The Man Who Invented Christmas turned out to be such a deeper, more intense movie than I was expecting from the quirky feelings that I received while watching the movie trailer.
What is done beautifully in this movie is the movement through serious topics in this movie that smoothly transition to the silliness and hilarious personality that Charles Dickens did have in real life. There was a scene in the movie where his wife says that it’s like he has two personalities, and that’s exactly how I feel as well. The blending of these two things made the film so. very. interesting!
Without spoiling the plot completely, I wanted to offer a pause for those with young children. Dickens’ memory takes him back to some sad and scary memories of his childhood. These may be a little troubling to a young kid. Charles is left behind as a young boy to stay in a dark and rat-infested workhouse. As a grown man he confronts his Father about abandoning him and being good for nothing. I would imagine some small or sensitive kids might be bothered by this. Honestly, small kids aren’t going to enjoy this movie at all.
For someone not familiar with the storyline of A Christmas Carol or Charles Dickens might find the first half of the movie a little slow. I’m a word nerd and literature geek, so knowing that this movie was based on the true story of this iconic Author made it all the better to me. My advice if you aren’t a literature lover is to stick with the movie anyway. It has a great message – will be a great Christmas movie to watch this year – and is clean!
Once the storyline has Charles really involved in actually writing his new book, things get very interesting. Certainly not for everyone, but for those who love biographies, behind-the-scenes, and Christmas stories, it’s a must-see.
Did you see The Man Who Invented Christmas? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments!
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