Starring: Bill Murray, Karen Allen, John Forsythe
Director: Richard Donner
Running Time: 101 mins
Scrooged is an American film about a selfish and cynical TV boss who is visited by the three ghosts to show him how to change his life on Christmas Eve.
Well, this is yet another example of a Christmas film that tries too hard to be both funny and dramatic. I don’t know what it is about the holiday, but for some reason, films seem to turn from being simple comedies into these horrifically sentimental stories that completely ruin the fun of it all.
So, this whole film is effectively the story of Dickens’ A Christmas Carol. And while it is a pretty decent modern adaptation, it doesn’t quite fit in with the secondary romantic-comedy feel that the movie is also trying to create, which makes for a bit of a confusing watch, as the story switches between Bill Murray’s character’s sentimentality for his past while the ghosts are teaching him his life lessons, along with simply the story of his romance with his ex-girlfriend.
Now, one of the main issues with this film apart from that is that it just wasn’t very funny for a Christmas comedy. By the end, it seemed as if the comedy had been completely forgotten and it was just all about learning the true meaning of Christmas, but even before that, it was very repetitive, full of annoying characters and very weak jokes.
Despite that, I’ve got to praise Bill Murray’s performance yet again. It’s another film which he saves fantastically, and his brutal and selfish character (very similar to his performance in Groundhog Day) was, as usual, a lot of fun to watch, and he really pulls it off. Karen Allen also stars, and although she’s charming and all, she doesn’t reach to the heights of Mr. Murray’s performance which effectively saves the film from being totally unfunny.
Overall, this gets a 6.7, because despite a strong central performance, it’s a confusing and cheesy Christmas story that just doesn’t make you laugh enough.