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Rare classic movies on DVD! Our DVD-Rs are region-free, studio titles are Region 1.

Christmas Holiday (1944) DVD-R

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Quick Overview

Starring Deanna Durbin, Gene Kelly, Richard Whorf, Dean Harens, Gladys George, Gale

Sondergaard

Directed by Robert Siodmak



Print: black/white

Runtime: 93 min.

Genre: film-noir

Print Quality: B



Don't be fooled by the title. Christmas Holiday is a far, far cry from It's a Wonderful Life. Told

in flashback, the story begins as Jackie Deanna Durbin, marries Southern aristocrat Robert

Monette Gene Kelly. Unfortunately, Robert has inherited his family's streak of violence and

instability and soon drags Jackie into a life of misery. When her husband commits murder,

Jackie is compelled by Robert's equally degenerate mother (Gale Sondergaard) to cover up

the crime. When Robert is arrested, Jackie, tormented by the love she still holds for her

husband, runs away from the family home, changing her name and securing work as a

singer in a New Orleans dive. Robert escapes from prison and makes his way to Jackie's

dressing room. Holding a reporter hostage, he threatens to kill both Jackie and the waylaid

sailor who has been listening to her story. An astonishing change of pace from Deanna

Durbin's usual lightweight musical fare, Christmas Holiday (based, believe it or not, on a

story by Somerset Maugham) is one of the bleakest film noirs of the 1940s. Durbin is merely

adequate in her role, but Gene Kelly gives a disturbingly convincing portrayal as a man

virtually devoured by his inner demons. Robert Siodmak, directs with his usual flair, using a

taut, suspenseful screenplay by Herman J. Mankiewicz.

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Detail

Starring Deanna Durbin, Gene Kelly, Richard Whorf, Dean Harens, Gladys George, Gale
Sondergaard
Directed by Robert Siodmak

Print: black/white
Runtime: 93 min.
Genre: film-noir
Print Quality: B

Don't be fooled by the title. Christmas Holiday is a far, far cry from It's a Wonderful Life. Told
in flashback, the story begins as Jackie Deanna Durbin, marries Southern aristocrat Robert
Monette Gene Kelly. Unfortunately, Robert has inherited his family's streak of violence and
instability and soon drags Jackie into a life of misery. When her husband commits murder,
Jackie is compelled by Robert's equally degenerate mother (Gale Sondergaard) to cover up
the crime. When Robert is arrested, Jackie, tormented by the love she still holds for her
husband, runs away from the family home, changing her name and securing work as a
singer in a New Orleans dive. Robert escapes from prison and makes his way to Jackie's
dressing room. Holding a reporter hostage, he threatens to kill both Jackie and the waylaid
sailor who has been listening to her story. An astonishing change of pace from Deanna
Durbin's usual lightweight musical fare, Christmas Holiday (based, believe it or not, on a
story by Somerset Maugham) is one of the bleakest film noirs of the 1940s. Durbin is merely
adequate in her role, but Gene Kelly gives a disturbingly convincing portrayal as a man
virtually devoured by his inner demons. Robert Siodmak, directs with his usual flair, using a
taut, suspenseful screenplay by Herman J. Mankiewicz.

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