Film Review : A Wonderful Life

1084 Words Sep 13th, 2016 5 Pages
This has become an American classic, a symbol of life, good cheer, and faith in family and friends, and the best film director Frank Capra ever made. Nevertheless, it took decades for it to become as popular as films go before it firmly represented the American ideals, and admiration of the American audience. Prior to the 1970s, the little known movie known as It’s A Wonderful Life (1946) starring James Stewart was nearly forgotten completely, until Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) and other TV stations started showing this remarkable film during the Christmas holiday. “To the amazement of TV program directors, the audience for the film grew and grew over the years, until now many families make it an annual ritual” (Ebert 229).

The film begins during Christmas Eve in the late 1940s as several people in the snowy little town in Bedford Falls are each saying a prayer for George Bailey (James Stewart). He is facing a terrible predicament and needs help desperately. The scene switches to outer space as unseen heavenly angles discuss their next assignment, helping George Bailey. A Guarding Angel named Clarence (Henry Travers) is assigned to the task and the rest of the film is told in flashback, seeing Bailey as a boy, a young adult, and finally an older married man facing a dilemma that nearly leads to him to committing suicide.

For most of his life, George Bailey has been dreaming about leaving his old hometown, and seeing the rest of the world. But his travels plans are…

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