A Christmas Carol (1951)
A miserly old man learns the meaning of the Christmas spirit.
As Ebenezer Scrooge is walking through the registry exchange, he is stopped by First Businessman and Second Businessman who ask him if he is going home to celebrate Christmas. He tells them that he doesn't celebrate Christmas and calls it humbug. As he leaves the registry, Samuel Wilkins asks him for more time in order to pay his debt. Ebenezer refuses to give give him an extension and walks away. He orders some carolers away from his business and walks into his office. First Collector and Second Collector asks him if he would like to donate some money to the poor fund. Scrooge sarcastically asks if there are no prisons or union work houses and wonders why money should be given so the poor can have a donation of meat and drink. He says that his taxes already pay for prisons and work houses and when First Collector says some of the poor would rather die, Ebenezer says if they did, it would reduce the surplus population. Fred walks into Ebenezer's office and wishes him a Merry Christmas. Ebenezer tells Fred to leave him alone and criticizes Fred for marrying a poor woman. Fred invites Ebenezer to have dinner with him on Christmas, but Ebenezer tells him to leave. As Fred is leaving, he asks Bob Cratchit how Mrs. Cratchit and his children are doing. Bob tells him that they are all excited for Christmas and Tiny Tim seems to be getting better. Tiny Tim is staring through a store front window at toys when Mrs. Cratchit finds him and they walk home together after she tells him how big the goose she bought is. At the end of the work day, Ebenezer asks Bob if he will want the whole day off and says Bob is stealing from him by wanting a day off. He gives him the day off, but tells him to come in early the next day. Bob tells Ebenezer Merry Christmas and Ebenezer comments on Bob's poverty and asks him what he has to be Merry about. As Ebenezer walks up to his front door, he hears Jacob Marley's voice and image appear on his door-knocker. He goes inside and keeps on hearing Marley calling his name. The door opens to his bedroom and the ghost of Marley floats into the room. Ebenezer thinks Marley is a fragment of his imagination, but eventually believes he is real. Marley tells Ebenezer that he wears the chains he forged in life and is now condemned to wander in agony. He warns Ebenezer that he will be visited by three spirits during the night and then disappears after showing Ebenezer spirits forced to witness human misery forever.
As the clock strikes one, the Ghost of Christmas Past appears in Ebenezer's bedroom and order him to walk with him. They travel back in time to when Ebenezer was in boarding school. Fan Scrooge walks into the school and tells Ebenezer that she is there to bring him home and his father has forgiven him for killing their mother in childbirth. They travel forward a little in time to a dance at Mr. Fezziwig's building. Ebenezer comments how kind Mr. Fezziwig was as he and Ghost of Christmas Past watch Mr. Fezziwig and Mrs. Fezziwig dance. Ebenezer sees his younger self giving Alice a ring and his younger self tells Alice that his feelings for her will never change. Ebenezer is sitting in Mr. Fezziwig's office when he walks in with Mr. Jorkin who suggests Mr. Fezziwig sells out. Mr. Fezziwig tells Mr. Jorkin that a business isn't just about making money, it is also about preserving a way of life. After Mr. Fezziwig is called away, Mr. Jorkin walks over to Ebenezer and offers him a job. They go forward some more in time to when Fan is on her death bed. She tells Ebenezer to promise her that she will take care of Fred, but as he walks away from her, he glares at baby Fred. Ebenezer and the Ghost of Christmas Past move forward a little more to when he got a job with Mr. Jorkin and met Marley for the first time. Marley tells Ebenezer that the world is on the verge of great changes and some of them by necessity will be violent and Ebenezer tells him that he thinks the world is becoming cruel and a person must steel themselves to survive it and not be crushed with the weak and infirm. After some time, Mr. Fezziwig's business is bought out by Mr. Jorkin. Alice breaks up with Ebenezer, because she knows that he no longer loves her the most, but instead has fallen in love with money. As the years went on, Ebenezer, Marley and Mr. Jorkin sat in a meeting with Mr. Snedrig, Mr. Groper and Mr. Rosebed. They tell Mr. Jorkin that the company owes a large amount of money, and they accuse Mr. Jorkin of embezzling money. Ebenezer and Marley make a proposition to the company representatives that they will offer them money in exchange for majority shares. At almost present time, Mrs. Dilber goes to the office and tells Bob that she has a message from Marley to Ebenezer that he doesn't expect to live through the night and Ebenezer should come now if he wants to see him before he dies. Bob tells Ebenezer the message, but Ebenezer insists on working until closing time. Ebenezer finally leaves work and goes to Marley's house and is met by Mrs. Dilber and Mr. Stretch. Ebenezer goes to see Marley, whose last words to Ebenezer are that they were wrong and to save himself. The Ghost of Christmas Past points out to Ebenezer that he felt no emotions as he took all of Marley's belongings.
Ebenezer wakes up to the Ghost of Christmas Present calling for him. The Ghost of Christmas Present tells Ebenezer that since he has forsaken to goodwill in his own heart, he will show him others who always live with goodwill. The Ghost of Christmas Present first takes Ebenezer to see a group of miners who are celebrating Christmas Eve with joy, despite their hardships. They next watch as Bob carries Tiny Tim home. Ebenezer asks if Tiny Tim will survive, but the Ghost of Christmas Present tells him he sees a future with a vacant seat. Ebenezer begs the Ghost of Christmas Present to keep Tiny Tim alive, but the Ghost just repeats the words Ebenezer said to the Collectors about the surplus population. They watch as Bob and his family are appreciative of the simple things they have and during dinner, Bob tells the rest of the family that he has heard of a job for Peter Cratchit that would bring in 5 and 6 pence a week. They make a toast and Tiny Tim wishes blessings upon everyone. Bob offers a toast to Ebenezer and the family begrudgingly makes a toast. Ebenezer and the Ghost of Christmas Present travel to Fred's house where he is telling Fred's Wife, Miss Flora, and Mr. Tupper about his interaction with Ebenezer that day. He gives a toast to Ebenezer and Miss Flora says she hates him, but Fred tells them he feels sorry for him. At the poor house, Alice tends to Alice's Patient who tells Alice that she didn't think there was anyone like her left in the world. The Ghost of Christmas Present has one more lesson for Ebenezer and reveals the boy of Ignorance and the girl of Want.
As Ebenezer is walking along the street, he is confronted by the Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come. The Ghost takes Ebenezer to the home of Bob and his family as they sit sadly mourning the death of Tiny Tim. Bob starts to cry and Mrs. Cratchit hugs him. The Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come then takes Ebenezer to Old Joe's place where the The Laundress, Mrs. Dilber and Mr. Stretch bring him things taken from Ebenezer's home after he died. Ebenezer and the Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come go to the registry and hear about First Businessman and Second Businessman talking about his death and how they don't expect anyone will go to Ebenezer's funeral. The Ghost takes Ebenezer to his gravesite and Ebenezer screams out in terror. He asks the Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come for pity and wakes up in his bed.
He hears a knocking on hid bedroom door and asks Mrs. Dilber what day it is. She tells him it is Christmas Day and dances in cheer. He gives her a guinea for her to buy herself a Christmas present and gives her a raise. He yells out the window to a Boy and offers him a shilling if he gets the nearby butcher to come to his house in order for him to buy his largest goose. Ebenezer writes the address of Bob and has the goose sent to his home anonymously. It arrives at the house and Tiny Tim correctly thinks it is from Ebenezer. Ebenezer goes to Fred's house and hands Fred's Maid his things. He surprises Fred and asks him if it is too late to join him for dinner. Ebenezer asks Fred's Wife for forgiveness and she does. The next morning Ebenezer comes into work and waits for Bob, who shows up exactly on time. Ebenezer tells him that he is late and tricks him into thinking he is going to fire him, but instead gives him a raise. Later, Ebenezer came to be known as a generous person and Tiny Tim eventually healed from his injury.