Miracle on 34th Street

Monday, Dec. 10, 2018, 7 p.m.

Where: Angelika Film Center

Cost: Not available

Age limit: Not available

A severely deluded mental patient with whiskers to spare (Edmund Gwenn) escapes from an old people’s home and proceeds to convince the world that he’s none other than Kris Kringle — never mind his "latent maniacal tendencies" and penchant for wielding a cane. First off, if this really is Santa Claus, shouldn’t he be at the North Pole and not New York City during this, his busiest time of the year? The film’s alleged good intentions and altruistic slams against crass consumerism are easily shot down by the words of R.H. Macy (Harry Antrim): “(We’re) the store that places public service ahead of profit... and consequently we’ll make more profits than ever before.” That goes double for little Natalie Wood, who only expresses a belief in Santa when there’s a home in the suburbs in it for her. That said, any film that positions William Frawley as “the highest authority available” is worth at least a couple of viewings. — Scott Marks

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