Miracle on 34th Street would probably come second to It’s a Wonderful Life as the most popular Christmas rerun and, although maybe not as legendary as Capra’s fairytale, the film is not the slighest bit less enjoyable and delicious.
The film has Edmund Gwenn, in an Oscar-winning performance, going to trial to prove the existence of Santa Claus to little Natalie Wood, already a rebel without a cause at the tender age of 9.
Wood is not the rookie of the game here, though. The great Thelma Ritter, who was later to become one of America’s finest character actresses of all time, did her film debut in this film. Don’t look for her name. Her bit part as a no nonsense Macy’s shopper didn’t earn her a place in the credits, but set the ball rolling for a magnificent career.
Brussels CINEMATEK offers two possibilities to revisit or discover this great American classic on Dec 16 and Dec 20, both at 3 pm.
Here’s the extremely original and star-packed trailer of the movie. Don’t stop it. Anne Baxter, Peggy Ann Garner and the other celebrities don’t go so far as to spoil anything. Enjoy.