Sunday, December 20, 2009

You'd better watch out, the next part.

So we were discussing a bit of Hallowe'en in Christmas movies...

Of course the most obvious creepy Christmas tale is Dickens' classic A Christmas Carol, and all of the myriad films, plays, 'toons and other media it has inspired since its publication in 1843 (on December 19th, by the way; I was only a day off!).

All manner of adaptations of A Christmas Carol can be seen online, and most are available on video. I'm quite sure you have at least two or three in your own library.

Each version of the tale has its spooky images, some scarier than others. For example, this version of The Ghost Of Christmas Yet To Come is from the Albert Finney musical Scrooge (1970):

Pretty creepy, but not necessarily any more imposing or dreadful than most other variations... until this happens:

Yeah, it's a bit of a shocker when you're a kid... but for real terror, real creep-out giddiness, one needed only to view Richard Williams' incredible animated version from 1971, wherein we are treated to the hideous, pathetic figures of Ignorance and Want:

Scared the Xmas out of me every time it was shown on TV when I was a little guy, and still manages to chill even now.

Actually, this version was pretty brave to show them (not all versions have), but I wish they'd found the extra ten seconds to have the Ghost of Christmas Present speak the full dialogue from the book:

'They are Man's,' said the Spirit, looking down upon
them. 'And they cling to me, appealing from their fathers.
This boy is Ignorance. This girl is Want. Beware them both,
and all of their degree, but most of all beware this boy,
for on his brow I see that written which is Doom,
unless the
writing be erased. Deny it.' cried the Spirit, stretching out
its hand towards the city. 'Slander those who tell it ye.
Admit it for your factious purposes and make it worse!
And bide the end.'

Amen, Brother Dickens.

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