Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Countdown to Christmas: 'Twas the Night Before Christmas (1974)

The following was originally published on my other blog, The Land of Whatever, on November 30, 2010. Let's revisit my review of 'Twas The Night Before Christmas, shall we?

Rankin-Bass' 1st Christmas special for CBS was Frosty The Snowman in 1969. 5 years later, the studio supplied CBS with another classic, and like Frosty, it was done in traditional animation.

'Twas the Night Before Christmas is, of course, a loose adaptation of Clement Moore's famous poem, A Visit From St. Nicholas, and is told from two points of view, those of a human family, and the mice who live within the walls of the house. The voices include Joel Grey ("Cabaret", better known today as the father of Dancing With The Stars champ Jennifer Grey) and "Lonesome" George Gobel, whom most folks might remember from many appearances on Hollywood Squares and The Tonight Show during the Johnny Carson era. Aimstaind18 uploaded this sample to YouTube:

I guess they decided to have some fun with Moore's verse, hence the use of the mice. Look for this to air a few times during December on ABC Family, which plays most of the Rankin-Bass specials they own for the Christmas season multiple times, if only because they don't have enough depth in their Christmas library.

Rating: B.


magicdog said...

I remember this special as fondly as the others!

It was the first time I learned Santa could be insulted enough to refuse to visit Christmas cheer on one little town!

The tunes were better than usual too:

"Only, a miracle can lend a hand....."

hobbyfan said...

I wonder just how long Santa's "naughty list" could be, if there are more self-serving types today......!

I actually got a kick out of ol' "Lonesome George" as Father Mouse. Some of his best work.