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The Golden Age of Christmas Movies: Festive Cinema of the 1940s and 50s

The Golden Age of Christmas Movies: Festive Cinema of the 1940s and 50s

by Thomas A. Christie
The Golden Age of Christmas Movies: Festive Cinema of the 1940s and 50s

The Golden Age of Christmas Movies: Festive Cinema of the 1940s and 50s

by Thomas A. Christie


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Today the Christmas movie is considered one of the best-loved genres in modern cinema, entertaining audiences across the globe with depictions of festive celebrations, personal reinvention and the enduring value of friendship and family. But how did the themes and conventions of this category of film come to take form, and why have they proven to be so durable that they continue to persist and be reinvented even in the present day?

From the author of A Righteously Awesome Eighties Christmas, this book takes a nostalgic look back at the Christmas cinema of the 1940s and 50s, including a discussion of classic films which came to define the genre. Considering the unforgettable storylines and distinctive characters that brought these early festive movies to life, it discusses the conventions which were established and the qualities which would define Christmas titles for decades to come.

Examining landmark features such as It’s a Wonderful Life, Miracle on 34th Street, The Bishop’s Wife and White Christmas, The Golden Age of Christmas Movies delves into some of the most successful festive films ever produced, and also reflects upon other movies of the time that—for one reason or another—have all but disappeared into the mists of cinema history. Considering films which range from the life-affirming to the warmly sentimental, The Golden Age of Christmas Movies investigates the many reasons why these memorable motion pictures have continued to entertain generations of moviegoers.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781999696207
Publisher: Extremis Publishing Ltd.
Publication date: 11/29/2019
Pages: 646
Product dimensions: 5.06(w) x 7.81(h) x 1.30(d)

About the Author

Dr Thomas A. Christie is a Scottish author with research interests in popular culture, literary analysis, interactive fiction and modern cinema. He has many years of experience as a literary professional, working in collaboration with several publishing companies including Applause Books, Cambridge Scholars Publishing, Crescent Moon Publishing and Robert Greene Publishing. His full-length works to date have focused upon subjects such as cinema history and literary criticism, as well as the production of original prose fiction. A passionate advocate of the written word and literary arts, Tom is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts and a member of the Royal Society of Literature, the Society of Authors, and the Federation of Writers Scotland. Over the years Tom has produced original writing for respected organisations such as the Stirling Smith Art Gallery and Museum and a leading independent higher education research unit based at the University of Stirling. Additionally, he is regularly involved in public speaking events and has delivered guest lectures and presentations about his work at many locations around the United Kingdom. Tom holds a PhD in English Studies, on the subject of Scottish Literature, from the University of Stirling. He has also been awarded a first-class Honours degree in Literature and a Master's degree in Humanities, specialising with distinction in British cinema history, from the Open University in Milton Keynes. For more details about Tom and his work, please visit his website at

Table of Contents

Foreword by Santa Joe Moore (Page i)

Introduction (Page 1)

Early Christmas Movies, 1897–1939 (Page 7)

1. The Shop Around the Corner (1940) (Page 17)

2. Meet Me in St Louis (1944) (Page 45)

3. Christmas in Connecticut (1945) (Page 69)

4. The Bells of St Mary's (1945) (Page 101)

5. It’s a Wonderful Life (1946) (Page 123)

6. Miracle on 34th Street (1947) (Page 161)

7. The Bishop’s Wife (1947) (Page 193)

8. Christmas Eve (1947) (Page 221)

9. It Happened on Fifth Avenue (1947) (Page 247)

10. Three Godfathers (1948) (Page 279)

11. Holiday Affair (1949) (Page 305)

12. The Lemon Drop Kid (1951) (Page 337)

13. Scrooge (1951) (Page 363)

14. The Holly and the Ivy (1952) (Page 393)

15. White Christmas (1954) (Page 425)

16. We’re No Angels (1955) (Page 457)

17. Bell, Book and Candle (1958) (Page 489)

18. Other Christmas Films of the 1940s and 50s (Page 523)

Filmography (Page 545)

Bibliography (Page 557)

Index (Page 591)

Acknowledgements (Page 619)

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