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Saturday, June 7, 2008


Half religious allegory (3 strangers appear on Christmas Eve to help a struggling family), half black comedy (the strangers are escaped Devil’s Island convicts) and all hooey. With Humphrey Bogart, Peter Ustinov, Aldo Ray, Basil Rathbone, Joan Bennett, Leo G Carroll, lensman Loyal Griggs, Frederick Hollander music & Michael Curtiz megging, you expect . . . well, something better than this. But in his second VistaVision pic, Curtiz makes the airless & studio bound WHITE CHRISTMAS, his initial film in Paramount's WideScreen format, look breezy by comparison. Only Joan Bennett maintains a bit professional dignity amidst the witless, farcical doings.

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