This Frank Capra’s classic has been one of my personal all time favourite Christmas movie. What better time than now to revisit this timeless gem with the 4K restoration edition. Looking spotless and devout of any film scratches or jumps as we used to see in old movies, this 4K restoration is probably THE best version of the movie you will ever find today. There is a colourised version that is in 1080 resolution. My initial contempt for a colourised version was that it would be a bastardization of a classic that was meant to be seen in its original black and white format. This conclusion I made without having actually seen the colourised version. Now that I have seen the colourised version for myself, I felt that it is not without its merits. The colourisation was done very well and so seamlessly that a first time viewer would probably not have noticed that it has been colourised. I was also pleasantly surprised to see a lot more details in the colour version over even the 4K edition as it brings out the clothings and tiny details of the sets and props which I would have otherwise not have noticed in its black and white format.
Despite this being made 74 years ago, the movie’s Christmas message of goodness, sacrifice, family values, consideration and friendship is timeless. The story may seem corny and manipulative but that is part of its charm and reflects a snapshot of how people behaved during a long passed era. The performances from the entire cast is believable and honest. James Stewart in particular was a stand out and excellent as the good hearted George Bailey driven to desperation on Christmas eve. An angel was then sent from heaven in answer to prayers from his family and friends, to help him overcome his misfortune. How the angel succeed in doing this makes for a remarkable viewing that touches the heart and never fails to get me emotionally invested. The scene with James Stewart rejoicing at the end screaming Merry Christmas as he runs through the town centre while it was snowing is one of the most iconic scenes ever filmed and still delivers after all these years and repeated viewing.
It’s Christmas time and Frank Capra’s It’s A Wonderful Life is simply THE best Christmas movie to watch to set you on the right tone, and mood. I will never tire of watching this film over and over again. So, do yourself a favour and watch this timeless classic. Merry Christmas one and all!