Miracle On 34th Street

by Zach Smith-Michaels


Once November hits, I am ready for Christmas! I love Christmas! I love the music, the lights, and of course…the movies. I want to utilize every available second to watch Christmas movies, and not feel judged. So, being that November is here, I had to talk about my all time favorite Christmas film: 1947’s Miracle on 34th Street.

This movie is magic. Pure magic! This is a perfect example of catching lightning in a bottle, because this film was remade THREE TIMES! Why is this lightning in a bottle? Because all three remakes were flops! They even re-released this movie in color, and people were livid! This 1947 rendition is the only one to receive good reviews, nay! Critical acclaim! Christmas movies don’t often receive such praise! So why is this movie so well loved?

Well, for starters let’s talk about this cast. This cast is great with two exceptions: Edmund Gwenn and Natalie Wood.

Edmund Gwenn is my definitive Santa Claus! On my first viewing this movie had me going back and forth through out the run time. Natalie Wood delivers a great line of dialogue that sums up the movie:

If you’re really Santa Claus, you can get it for me. And if you can’t, you’re only a nice man with a white beard like mother says.

I was on the fence about the true identity of Mr. Kringle throughout the run time of this film, and that is a magnificent testament to great film making.

Natalie Wood crushes this performance! You can tell that she came onto this film and that she gave it her all! Her dialogue is also so well written and her chemistry with Edmund Gwenn is brilliant!

This movie reminded me of everything that I love about film making. The director lets the camera run so that you can see the actors really acting! George Seaton directed this film and he also wrote the screenplay, and the screenplay is brilliant! Brilliant! The script has to handle a lot of different worlds: The corporate world, the family element, Kringle’s dialogue, the court room! Terrific! Seaton did a really terrific job!

Also, the court room sequences had me laughing and genuinely crying. Real tears! I’ve been mocked for this, but you know what? So what!

Also, Miracle on 34th Street has a perfect ending!

This is a brilliant film!

Honestly (without condoning) I understand why someone would remake this. Update the world, have some fun with these characters, but a remake is totally unnecessary! This film is timeless even in black and white…especially in black and white! I love watching this every Christmas, and this film is a holiday staple in my household! I love this movie!