Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Miracle on 34th Street (1947)–episode 10

All text in brown are quotations from the script which can located at the following address - http://www.springfieldspringfield.co.uk/


Fred arrives at Bellevue to visit Kris. Kris is really depressed, and Fred couldn’t be more puzzled at Kris’s actions. After the two men exchange pleasantries Fred asks Kris about the test. He knows that Kris could have passed the tests, and the fact that he failed has him hoping to hear an explanation. The two sit and discuss the situation. “Why’d you do it, Kris? You deliberately failed that examination, didn’t you? Why?”. Kris slumps in his chair and explains. “Because the last few days, I’ve had great hope. I had a feeling Doris was beginning to believe in me. And now I find out she was just humoring me all the time”. Fred explains that Doris knew nothing of the ruse regarding the photographs and the mayor. He also that Mr. Shellhammer initially wanted her to ask Kris to take further tests. And that she didn’t because her feelings were hurt and didn’t want to risk hurting Kris. “Only because I was a nice, kind old man she felt sorry for”. Kris says that if Fred had been carted off to Bellevue she would have been very angry, and wouldn’t have been afraid to express her feelings. Fred is forced to agree that Doris had doubts “All right, she had doubts. Why not? She hasn’t really believed in anything for years. You can’t expect her to suddenly...”. Suddenly Kris explodes with an outburst that catches Fred off guard. “Oh, it’s not just Doris. There’s Mr. Sawyer. He’s contemptible, dishonest, selfish, deceitful, vicious. Yet he’s out there and I’m in here. He’s called normal and I’m not. Well, if that’s normal, I don’t want it. That’s why I answered incorrectly”.

105. Kris explains why he failed the test

Fred explains that whatever Kris does affects a lot people. He adds that he already believes in Kris, and Susan is just beginning to. Most of the world believes in Kris, and everything he does affects everybody else. Kris thinks about what Fred has said and says “I ought to be ashamed of myself. Even if we can’t win, we can go down swinging. Let’s get out of here”. Fred reminds Kris that he failed his test. “Oh, yes, I forgot. I said Calvin Coolidge was the first president. I can imagine what they’re thinking of me for saying that. But you’ll get me out of this. You’ll think of something”. Fred says that won’t easy. Kris looks into his face with hope, and showers Fred with praise.

107. But you'll get me out of this

I believe you’re the greatest lawyer since Darrow”. Fred tries vainly to explain to Kris just what he’s asking. But gives up after looking his friends face. “But you don’t understand. It...I'll do everything I can”.


Back at the department store Mr. Macy is giving Mr. Sawyer the verbal thrashing of his life. “Dangerous, my foot! I don’t care if he failed ten examinations. You had no right to do it! You get the case dropped tomorrow, or you might have another lump to match the one Kris gave you!”. Sawyer is

108. Sawyer explains things- Macy doesn't believe him

sitting in a chair while Mr. Macy bellows at him from behind his desk. This sequence is perfectly shot. Mr. Macy looks like the giant he thinks he is, while Mr. Sawyer looks small and is nervously tugging at his eyebrow. When the sequence ends Mr. Sawyer is lucky to still have a job while Mr. Macy is furious. He has to be wondering how Mr. Sawyer ever got a job at Macy’s.


The scene changes to the chambers of Judge Henry X. Harper. District Attorney Thomas Mara is with him. The judge is preparing to sign commitment papers for Kris. This normally a long process. The judge has to read all the papers, and if he/she agrees, signs the document. Thomas Mara assures him there’s nothing special about this case. “Take my word for it. Just routine commitment papers. Cut and dried. The man calls himself
Kris Kringle. Thinks he’s Santa Claus
”. As the judge picks up a pen and prepares to sign the papers his court clerk knocks on the door and announces that a man representing Kris would like to see the judge. Both the

110. Fred knocks on the door

                                                      Better show him in

Judge and Mr. Mara are surprised anyone is representing Kris. Fred enters and says “Good morning. Your Honor, there seems to be undue haste in this case. I wish to protect my client’s rights, as I’m sure you do. I’d like to request a formal hearing to which I may bring witnesses”. The judge quickly discovers this case is not so cut and dried as Thomas Mara said. He puts his pen down and checks his court calendar. He makes a date for the following Monday to convene a hearing. Fred thanks the judge and departs. As Fred passes the clerks desk Mr. Sawyer is siting in a chair. District Attorney Mara follows close behind. Mr. Sawyer stops him and asks about Fred. “That man...I heard him say something about Mr. Kringle before. Who is he?”. Mr. Mara responds “His name is Fred Gailey, Kringle’s lawyer. Probably grabbed the case to get some cheap publicity”. The one word in that sentence that terrifies Mr. Sawyer most is publicity, and he promptly says “We can’t have that”. The last thing Mr. Sawyer and Mr. Macy want is publicity. Mr. Sawyer runs after Fred.

113. Sawyer tries to buy Fred off

Mr. Gailey, I represent Mr. Macy. My name’s Sawyer”. When Sawyer introduces himself Fred finds himself saying “Oh, so you’re Sawyer”. Sawyer responds “Yes. Regarding this Kringle matter, we’re very anxious to avoid any publicity. So if you would agree to put this through quietly, we’d surely find a generous way to express our appreciation”. Mr. Sawyer doesn’t seem to appreciate the mess he just created. First he created a small scandal for one of the largest retailers in the city. Then he proceeds to offer a bribe to an officer of the court on behalf of Mr. Macy. Fred wisely ignores this, and starts talking about publicity. Mr. Sawyer comes the conclusion that he has failed in the task Mr. Macy asked him to do, and to make matters worse he’s just aided Fred in the formulation of a defense. “Very interesting. Publicity. Hmm. That’s not a bad idea. If I’m going to win this case, I’ll have to have plenty of public opinion. And publicity’s just the way to do it. Thanks, Mr. Sawyer”. As Fred walks off Mr. Sawyer starts tugging at his eyebrow.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Miracle on 34th Street (1947)–episode 9

All text in brown are quotations from the script which can located at the following address - http://www.springfieldspringfield.co.uk/


Tom’s Trivia - My copy of the script has Kris assaulting Mr. Sawyer with his cane. During script re-writes the cane was removed altogether, and an umbrella was substituted. And if you watch the film closely you’ll notice that when Kris barges into Mr. Sawyers office you’ll see he’s not carrying anything in his hands. So when Kris strikes Mr. Sawyer it’s with the handle of an umbrella Mr. Sawyer brought into the office. So Kris did not assault anyone with his cane as Mr. Sawyer predicted.

95.1 Kris beats a hasty retreat

                                                     Kris skedaddles

Mr. Shellhammer and Doris are walking down the hall when they see Kris in Mr. Sawyers office. After Kris whacks Mr. Sawyer on the forehead Mr. Sawyer falls back into a chair. The whack wasn’t very hard nor was the umbrella handle. But to prove he was right, and everybody else (which includes Dr. Pierce) wrong he feigns unconsciousness to make the matter a little more dramatic than the situation warrants. Doris and Mr. Shellhammer run into the office to find Mr. Sawyer doing a masterful job of faking.

96. They try to wake Sawyer

        Look at that bump! Mr. Sawyer...He’s unconscious! Better get a wet towel

When Doris and Mr. Shellhammer enter the office they try to revive Mr. Sawyer whose milking being unconscious for all its worth. Doris seems to be more concerned while Mr. Shellhammer seems to be on the verge of full fledged panic. They eventually cart Mr. Sawyer to the store infirmary where it becomes readily apparent that Mr. Sawyer is now the owner of an egg sized lump on his head.

97. The bump

Mr. Sawyer may be an adequate employee, but as a human being he fails exceedingly well. When explaining what happened he lies through his teeth “I tell you we were merely talking, but when I mentioned Santa Claus and attacked his delusion, he became violent. I told you he had latent maniacal tendencies. Well, I think this proves it”. Mr. Shellhammer talks about having Kris re-tested by a psychiatrist. Doris points out the flaw in that idea. Mr. Shellhammer pulls his weight as the head of the toy department “I don’t think we can take any chances. I can’t see any harm in it. If he passes the test, he can return to work at once, and if he doesn’t, it’s better if we find out”. Mr. Sawyer, who can’t seem to keep his big mouth shut, starts to say something than changes the subject slightly “You better have the examination right away, before he tells Mr. Ma…before Mr. Macy finds out”. Mr. Shellhammer asks Doris to inform Kris. Doris has come to care about him and lets Mr. Shellhammer know it “I won’t do it. I’ve grown very fond of him. This would be like telling him I thought he was insane”. Mr. Sawyer pipes up “You don’t call this acting normal, do you?”. Mr. Shellhammer decides to tell Kris himself.

Back in the toy department Messrs. Sawyer and Shellhammer conspire to get Kris out of the store with as little fuss as possible. Mr. Shellhammer has a pretty good idea of what to do, but Mr. Sawyer has returned to his normal crabby self and adds his two cents “If he sees me or you mention psychiatrist it’s more or less attacking his delusion again. He’s apt to become violent”. Mr. Shellhammer enters Santas castle and talks to Kris “Mr. Kringle, Mrs. Walker wanted you to know that we’re going to take some publicity pictures this afternoon down at the city hall, you and the mayor”. Kris mentions that he had an appointment with Mr. Macy, and Mr. Shellhammer assures him he’ll be back in time to have that meeting. In a few minutes all three men are downstairs. It’s raining and Mr. Sawyer is hiding under a rather large umbrella. As Mr. Sawyer hides Kris walks past him and gets into a cab. As soon as Kris is in the cab Mr. Sawyer gets into the front passenger seat. The cab driver asks for the destination. Mr. Sawyer announces its Bellevue. Kris asks if Doris knows about what’s happening to him. He lies through his teeth yet again “Yes. We all discussed it”.

101. Kris finds out he's going to Bellvue


Fred is in his office dictating a wonderfully boring letter. Bellevue Hospital calls and informs Fred that Kris will be staying a while. When the doctor says that Kris failed some tests and because of this he (the doctor) will have to recommend commitment. As soon as Fred hears this he says he’ll be right over.

103. Bellvue calls Fred

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Miracle on 34th Street (1947)–episode 8

All text in brown are quotations from the script which can located at the following address - http://www.springfieldspringfield.co.uk/


83. Kris sings to Susan - bubblegum fasination

That night Kris is invited over to Doris’s apartment so he can say goodnight to Susan. As he sits at the side of her bed he asks her if she would like him to sing her a bedtime song. Susan asks why and says that her mother doesn’t sing to her. Flabbergasted at this news Kris asks “Doesn’t your mother ever sing to you at night?”. Susan tells him she never has, and asks “why should she”. Kris tells her he likes bedtime songs, and proceeds to sing her one called To Market. While Kris sings Susan blows bubbles with her bubble gum. Kris has seen her do this before, but his fascination with the bubbles gets the better of him. As the bubbles get bigger and bigger Kris’s fascination grows, the song slowly fades away. Eventually Kris asks Susan for a stick of bubble gum. This is Kris’ first time blowing bubbles, and the attempt fascinates Susan. At first 84. Kris blows an enormous bubble 

it’s a small bubble, but like so many other things it just keeps growing. We never see the bubble, but Susan’s eyes, coupled with her fascination/terror tell us its getting enormous…till it pops. We don’t see Kris until he’s back in his apartment, but the expression on Susan’ face tells us all has not gone well.

85. the result isn't pretty

                                                      Oh my goodness !

Kris retreats to the apartment he shares with Fred, to extract bubblegum from his beard, and to remember to never ever have anything to do with bubblegum ever again.

86. picking gum from his beard


Having extracted what surely must have felt like a never ending supply of gum from his beard Kris reports for work the next day.

87. having lunch with Alfred 

He usually has lunch with Alfred, but on this particular day Alfred appears to have something on his mind. Kris asks him if he’s interested in a friendly game of Checkers after lunch. “I don’t feel like it”. Alfred is usually in a pleasant mood, so to see him like this means something is wrong. Kris repeatedly coaxes Alfred to tell what the problem is. “Well, remember I was telling you how I like to play Santa Claus at the “Y” on Christmas and give out packages to the young kids? I was tellin’ that to Mr. Sawyer, see, and he says that’s very bad”. Kris wants to make sure he knows who Alfred is talking about. “Sawyer. You mean, uh...”. Alfred helps Kris finish his sentence. “That’s the one. He’s a psychologist”. After Alfred confirms Mr. Sawyers identity Kris asks Alfred why its supposedly bad. “He says guys who dress like Santa Claus, see, and give presents away do it because when they was young they must have did something bad, and they feel guilty about it. So now they do something they think is good to make up for it. It’s what he calls a “guilt complex.”. Kris says that the only thing Alfred might be guilty of is overeating. But Alfred says it’s nothing to make light of, and he’s really worried. Kris is now growing concerned for his friend, and asks just the basis what is for these conclusions. Alfred says Mr. Sawyer has yet to discover the cause for this alleged “guilt complex”. When Kris learns that Alfred sees the store quack everyday he asks him if Mr. Sawyer has discovered anything else. “Oh, just that I hate my father. I didn’t know it, but he says I do”. Kris confirms that Mr. Sawyer sees Alfred everyday “Yeah. I say anything that comes into my head”. Enraged Kris excuses himself from the table “Excuse me, Alfred. A few things have just come into my head, and I’m going to say them”.


In this sequence we a side of Kris that we’ve never seen before. He’s angry. But it’s a protective anger, so to a certain degree it (the anger) is understandable.

Kris strides purposely into Mr. Sawyers office. Instead of being greeted by a half hearted hello Mr. Sawyer barks at him with “Why are you busting into my office like this?” as if he expected somebody to do exactly this. At first Kris asks if he’s a licensed psychiatrist which sounds like a perfectly normal question. Sawyer declines to answer. Kris gets right to the heart of the matter. “I have great respect for psychiatry and great contempt for meddling amateurs who go around practicing it. You have no more right to analyze Alfred than a dentist has to remove a gallbladder!”.90. and great contempt for medling amateurs

                                               “ meddling amateurs

It’s eventually discovered that Mr. Sawyer is employed to give intelligence tests, and nothing but those tests. Mr. Sawyer dabbles in psychology. “Passing yourself off as a psychologist. You ought to be horsewhipped, taking a normal, impressionable boy like Alfred and filling him with complexes”. Sawyer makes things a lot worse than they have to be by pretending to be superior to Kris by using some psychological terminology. When Mr. Sawyer says “Alfred’s maladjusted” he goes too far. Kris threatens to inform Mr. Macy of Mr. Sawyers activities. Sawyer counters with a threat of his own “Leave or I’ll call security”. In a relatively calm voice Kris say to Mr. Sawyer “There’s only one way to handle a man like you. You won’t listen to reason. You’re heartless. You have no humanity”. Mr. Sawyer tell him to leave yet again. Kris picks up an umbrella and smacks Mr. Sawyer on the forehead.

93. Kris hits Sawyer in the head with an umbrella handle

Monday, November 17, 2014

Miracle on 34th Street (1947)- episode 7

All text in brown are quotations from the script which can located at the following address - http://www.springfieldspringfield.co.uk/


After dinner Susan has to go to bed. When she’s already in bed Kris goes to tuck her in. He tries his best to talk to her about Christmas, but she’s not too receptive to the subject. Finally he asks her if there’s something she wants for Christmas. Something so special she hasn’t even told her mom about it. Hesitant at first Susan reaches over to the night stand, opens a drawer, and pulls out a clipping from a magazine.

75. Susan's full size house

As she hands the picture to Kris she says “That’s what I want for Christmas”. At first Kris thinks she wants a dolls house, but Susan soon clarifies matters. “No, a real house. If you’re really Santa Claus, you can get it for me. And if you can’t, you’re only a nice man with a white beard, like mother said”. Kris looks at the picture, strokes his beard and counters with “Now wait a minute, Susan. Just because every child can’t get his wish doesn’t mean there isn’t a Santa Claus”. To which Susan responds in an obviously sarcastic tone “That’s what I thought you’d say”. Kris tries to explain that some children wish for things they couldn’t possibly use. Curious as to what she would do do with a real house he asks her “What could you do with a house like this?”. Susan very quickly responds “Live in it with my mother”. It becomes readily apparent to Kris that Susan has really thought this out. She may not be able to articulate her feelings at her young age, but Kris hears something he rarely, if ever, hears from a child of eight. Susan wants this for for somebody else. She may not believe in Santa Claus yet, but she seems to instinctively know that Christmas is a time for giving. And wants her mom to have this house. “Well, it’s a tall order, but I’ll do my best” says Kris. He asks for permission to hold on to the clipping which she grants. After their chat is over Kris watches Susan chew bubble gum, something Kris is fascinated by. A fascination he will soon regret having. 

76. bubble-gum

                                ____________________________

After dinner Fred and Kris drive out to the Brooks Memorial Home to pick up a few of Kris’s things to take back to Fred’s apartment, and Kris’s new home. Later in the evening Kris inspects his new but albeit temporary home. He compliments Fred on the apartment who enthusiastically agrees. As Fred brushes his teeth Kris looks at the picture Susan gave him, looks at Fred, and grins a bit like a mischievous child. Kris asks Fred if he likes living in Manhattan. Fred admits living in Manhattan is ok, but that someday he’d like to get a small colonial house on Long Island.

As the two get ready to retire for the day Kris refers to Doris and Susan as a pair of lost souls “…and it’s up to us to help them. I’ll take care of Susan if you take care of her mother”. Fred says he will. As Kris says good night Fred suddenly says “Oh, no, you don’t. I’m not gonna be cheated. All my life I’ve wondered something. Now’s my chance to find out. It’s a question that’s puzzled the world for centuries. Does Santa Claus sleep with his whiskers outside or in?”.

77. Cold air makes them grow

                                          Cold air makes them grow

Kris is surprised, and to certain degree entertained by this sudden, and very unexpected question. “Always sleep with them out. Cold air makes them grow”.

                                 _______________________

The next day a sales man at Macy’s is helping a woman find a particular item. “Yes, I know just what you want. We don’t carry that brand, but I think Gimbel’s does. Let me see. Yes, here it is. I thought I noticed it before. Looks like an exceptional bargain”. The woman is bewildered that Macy’s would send her to any other store. The monolithic Macy Shopping Guide shows what every other store is selling and for how much. Macy customers are in a state of shock when they see the guide.

78. Macy shopping guide cover79. Gimbels has it- does this fellow ever shut up

Meanwhile the competition is not sitting on their hands. Mr. Gimbel, owner of Macy’s primary competitor is breathing fire at his department heads. “Every shopper in New York City suddenly thinks of Macy as a benevolent soul, thinking only of the welfare of the public. And what does that make Gimbel? Nothing but a profiteering moneygrubber. Two can play at this game. From now on, if we haven’t got what the customer wants, send him back to Macy’s. And what’s more, we’ll do the same thing in our stores in Philadelphia, Milwaukee, and Pittsburgh. Get to work on it right away”. And just up the street Mr. Macy is discovering Gimble’s is copying what they’re doing, and decides to expand their operations. “So, Gimbel’s doing it in Philadelphia Pittsburgh, and Milwaukee, eh? Well, we can cover the country, too. Notify our stores in San Francisco, Atlanta, Toledo, and Newark to get going right away”.

81. Macy expands

Soon the two kings of New York commerce are facing each other. Mr. Gimbel is facing Mr. Macy with Kris in between them. Photographers are yelling for the men to pose this way and that. Mr. Gimbel is anxious to have photos taken at his store. But before the venue changes Mr. Macy says “Just a minute. I have something I’d like to give our friend here”. Kris is very thankful and takes a look at the check. Mr. Gimbel sneaks a peek at the check and is surprised that Macy was so generous. When he asks what Kris has planned for it Kris says “Well, I have a friend. A doctor. He’s been very kind to me. He needs an x-ray machine”. Mr. Macy doesn’t think the check will cover the full cost. Then Mr. Gimbel offers to pick up the remainder of the full cost. Sensing good publicity slipping away Mr. Macy suggests that Kris buy it through the store and get ten percent off. Not to be out done Mr. Gimbel says he can get it for cost. Having failed Mr. Macy shakes Mr. Gimbel’s hand and laughs.

82. Gimbel can get the x-ray machine for cost