Posted in: Disc Reviews by Gino Sassani on November 14th, 2003
This 1994 Hallmark film is based on an obscure Truman Capote story. It’s loaded with the usual heavy sentimental trappings of a Hallmark film. The film attempts to create atmosphere through its 1930’s period setting. The trouble is I found it very hard to relate to or care about anyone in the film. The young Buddy appears to have each emotional turn literally forced out of him. Even the lovable Fonz, Henry Winkler, never gets a good foothold on his character. Katherine Hepburn’s age has obviously robbed her of the abilities she has so often displayed in her vast body of work. There are moments reminiscent of the vastly superior A Christmas Story, but this film never approaches that kind of holiday magic.
Nothing will jump out at you from this mediocre Dolby Digital 2.0 soundtrack. TV broadcast sound is the best description I can offer. The entire sound field is dominated by mid frequency ranges with no notable deviations.
One Christmas is presented in the full frame format one would expect from a made-for-TV film. There are an excessive number of film specks. Colors are soft and at times washed out. It is more than likely these color flaws are an attempt to enhance the period feel of the film. Darks are not at all impressive.
No Christmas presents to be found under this tree.
I never read the original Capote story so it I can’t in good faith compare this project to the source material. Truth be told, there just isn’t anything at all engaging about the film. There are far too many wonderful Christmas classics to be found. Skip this one and get A Christmas Story. I do plan to watch this film again “When it’s a cold day in – eh – New Orleans.”