One of my favorite holiday movies is It’s a Wonderful Life. George Bailey goes from wishing he had never been born, to understanding that his positive influence on so many lives would have been terrible, without him. Of course, Clarence the Angel finally gets his wings.
The movie seems like such a perfect story with the perfect ending. In fact, the movie was not initially a blockbuster hit and in fact was initially considered a disappointment. Wikipedia tells us that the movie even caught the eye of the FBI:
On May 26, 1947, the FBI issued a memo stating “With regard to the picture “It’s a Wonderful Life”, [redacted] stated in substance that the film represented rather obvious attempts to discredit bankers by casting Lionel Barrymore as a ‘scrooge-type’ so that he would be the most hated man in the picture. This, according to these sources, is a common trick used by Communists. [In] addition, [redacted] stated that, in his opinion, this picture deliberately maligned the upper class, attempting to show the people who had money were mean and despicable characters.
Hard to believe, when we now look back on it. Of course, the fact that the movie is looked upon with such good feelings is a bit like the book that George found inscribed at the end of the movie. It read, “Dear George: Remember no man is a failure who has friends. P.S. Thanks for the wings! Love, Clarence.” It is a wonderful life when you have friends!
And for our pic o’ day:
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