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A favorite holiday movie | Federal Way letter to the editor
In the Dec. 24 edition of The Mirror, there was an article titled "Holiday entertainment: Video stores and theaters stay open."
The article included a listing of top Christmas movies such as Bing Crosby's "White Christmas." Although these are all good movies, there was one major omission from the list including what I believe is the best Christmas movie that has ever been made.
I am referring to a movie titled "Holiday Affair" which was based on the short story "Christmas Gift" by John D. Weaver. This movie, in black and white, was released by RKO Pictures in 1949 and starred Robert Mitchum, Janet Leigh and Wendell Corey. The story basically is about a young widow (Janet Leigh) who has a 6-year-old son (Timmy Ennis) and two men (Robert Mitchum and Wendell Corey) who vie for her attention (and affections) at Christmas. What is unusual was picking Robert Mitchum (a superstar among Hollywood actors) to star in this romantic movie because he was more known for his roles in dramatic, war and western movies such as "Cape Fear," "River of No Return" (with Marilyn Monroe), "The Winds of War," "War and Remembrance" and "Ryan's Daughter."
It was 46 years later in 1996 this same studio (RKO Pictures) did a remake of the picture, this time in color. David James Elliott ("JAG" TV series) replaced Robert Mitchum as Steve Mason, Cynthia Gibb replaced Janet Leigh as Jody Ennis and Tom Irwin replaced Wendell Corey as attorney Paul Davis. This time they really "hit a home run" because these individuals were made for the part, the story is great with a wonderful "tear-jerker" ending where "they live happily after" ... and that is why it is my favorite Christmas movie of all time.
The two lines from the movie that are my favorites: Jody's "it is amazing how a small train can change someone's life" and after Jody tells Steve "I need more time," Steve replies "Time is running out... sometimes, Jody you just have to take a chance."