A Matter of Principle

Overview

This 60-minute Yuletide TV special stars Alan Arkin as a domineering patriarch. He sees no need for such frills as a Christmas tree, and when his wife Barbara Dana (the real- life Mrs. Arkin) buys this Yuletide adornment, Arkin responds by destroying the tree. Now he's gone too far, and Barbara responds by taking their eleven children and leaving Arkin alone. This gives Arkin ample time to realign his thinking and emerge from his Scroogelike chrysalis. In addition to teaming Mr. and Mrs. Alan Arkin, Matter of ...
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Overview

This 60-minute Yuletide TV special stars Alan Arkin as a domineering patriarch. He sees no need for such frills as a Christmas tree, and when his wife Barbara Dana (the real- life Mrs. Arkin) buys this Yuletide adornment, Arkin responds by destroying the tree. Now he's gone too far, and Barbara responds by taking their eleven children and leaving Arkin alone. This gives Arkin ample time to realign his thinking and emerge from his Scroogelike chrysalis. In addition to teaming Mr. and Mrs. Alan Arkin, Matter of Principle costars the Arkin's real-life son Tony as one of the kids.
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Special Features

About the author; About the cast; Study topics
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 11/23/2004
  • UPC: 012233002126
  • Original Release: 1983
  • Rating:

  • Source: Monterey Video
  • Region Code: 1
  • Time: 56:00
  • Format: DVD
  • Sales rank: 61,946

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Alan Arkin Flagg Purdy
Barbara Dana
Tony Arkin
Technical Credits
Gwen Arner Director
Neal Miller Screenwriter
Nancy Miller Screenwriter
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Scene Index

Side #1 --
2. The Rebel [8:05]
3. Principles [4:18]
4. What Wedding? [5:43]
5. Is Dinner Ready? [7:28]
6. The Tree [12:15]
7. The Redemption [8:28]
8. Christmas at Last! [6:45]
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Menu

Side #1 --
   Play Movie
   Scene Access
   About the Author
   About the Cast: Alan Arkin
   About the Cast: Barbara Dana
   Study Topics
   Other Great DVDs
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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 28, 2000

    Christmas Spirit You Can See

    I have not seen this movie since about 1984 when it last aired on PBS (at least by my memory). I can remember it vividly, even today, more than 16 years later. It is a story about a man who sticks to his principles, no matter what, and about the woman who puts up with him. We find out that priniciples, like most things, vary in value and cost according to the person who holds them. Alan Arkin does a great job portraying a hard, stubborn and prideful man who, as a matter of principle, snuffs out any joy or light in his family's life. His wife seems to be a timid, spiritless creature, but it turns out she too has some principles she is willing to pay for. The tension between these two central characters is supported by some excellent performances by other family members who react they way we would and thus allow us to see how these two people deal with our judgements and criticism. This movie reminds us that hope and redemption are possible for all people even those we judge unworthy or unlikeable. It turns the words, ''Christmas Spirit'', into an experience, a viewable form, that you can play and re-play in your mind, as many times as you need.

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