The story behind the story, a film looking at how Charles Dickens created the greatest Christmas story of all time. Changing the meaning of the holiday in 1843 as he was struggling with three flops and looked to write and publish his Christmas story in only two months!
I have to start this review off by saying that it was very refreshing to see a film like this looking more at Dickens as he was writing rather than the easy option of having yet another version of A Christmas Carol. This film manages to have so many wonderful moments, managing to make you smile and fill you will hope as he pieces together the story everyone knows so well.
In imaginary conversations with the characters particularly Ebenezer Scrooge and how the small moments became huge ideas and very important aspects of the story which holds together so much hope and joy that even the meanest of people can change and that can happen over night. You might need to be visited by three spirits first though! I think it also helps to show that it is not as easy as you may think to write a story and put everything together.
Dan Stevens was brilliantly engaging as Charles Dickens and did so well in the leading role, I was very impressed as I thought he had the emotions all spot on especially when he was on the edge of being Scrooge himself. Certain moments when you could really see that from the character. Christopher Plummer was a hilarious Scrooge is now the oldest actor to ever take on that role, the exchanges with Stevens were just brilliant. Add in one of my favourites Jonathan Pryce as John Dickens and I was pretty happy with the outcome although I felt the stand out performance was from Justin Edwards as John Forster!
One moment which really stands out for me is with Geordie John and after they had been to the pub singing Geordie folk song Cushie Butterfield and being asked what language is that, “It’s Geordie” I thought that was just brilliant, although unless you are from Newcastle and probably of a certain age you won’t have any idea what it is! I am only aware due to seeing Geordie the Musical twice now.
It might not be for everyone but I certainly thought it was a welcomed change from just another version, showing that it is difficult to write and what Dickens might really have gone through to find the characters and bring them to life so quickly. Struggling financially and putting it all on the line for this one book, that must be out in time for Christmas. Certainly sparking different ways in which writers come up with ideas and can really push on and create these magical stories that are still told and retold to this very day, that is important to remember if nothing else!