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With: Henry B. Walthall, Marion Leonard, Gladys Egan, Kate Bruce, William J. Butler, W. Chrystie Miller, John Tansey, etc.
Written by: Alan Crosland, etc.
Directed by: D.W. Griffith, etc.
MPAA Rating: Not Rated
Running Time: 121
Date: 03/18/2013

A Christmas Past: Vintage Holiday Films 1901-1925 (2001)

3 1/2 Stars (out of 4)

Silent Nights

By Jeffrey M. Anderson

A very early version of A Christmas Carol appears in Kino's new treasure trove called A Christmas Past featuring nine amazing little Christmas-themed shorts from the silent film days. Thomas Edison's company produced the 1910 version of A Christmas Carol, as well as a couple of romantic comedies, A Christmas Accident and Santa Claus vs. Cupid that involve someone dressing up as Santa and a case of mistaken identity. Edison also took on the classic poem The Night Before Christmas. And another Edison short simply shows a group of merry young people taking a sleigh ride. The collection also includes an indispensable D.W. Griffith classic, the melodrama A Trap for Santa, and an incredible, independently produced life-story of Santa called Santa Claus, made in Alaska by Mr. and Mrs. F.E. Kleinschmidt. And the disc kicks off with what looks like an anonymous little home movie from 1901 showing kids putting on a Christmas play at home. A Christmas Past features a brand new score by Al Kryszak that can be both enchanting and annoying, depending on which short you're watching.

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