Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer
Directed by Kizo Nagashima and Larry Roemer
Starring: Burl Ives, Billie Mae Richards, Paul Soles, Larry D. Mann
In 1964 CBS took on a classic holiday story with their animated feature Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer. The show was made using stop-motion animation and featured a number of new songs by Johnny Marks. Burl Ives voiced the character of Sam the Snowman who narrates the story.
Here is an original trailer for the special which originally aired during The General Electric Fantasy Hour.
From the days of being an outcast at the reindeer games to his battle with the Bumble this is a great watch for the whole family. Characters like Yukon Cornelius and Hermey are classic and fun. There’s also a bit of romance as Rudolph meets the doe Clarice. The story of saving Christmas is brought to life in a wonderful way.
This is a holiday classic that has remained popular despite its obvious age. The use of stop-motion animation isn’t used often today and it gives this movie a classic feel that doesn’t hurt the quality of the story. It’s important to remember that the original airing would’ve been seen largely in black and white.
There isn’t a lot to say about this holiday staple. It shows its age but doesn’t seem outdated. The songs are timeless and the story is one that’s familiar to most of us. After almost 50 years this is a show guaranteed to have a slot in the television schedule during December. I would put it up there with A Charlie Brown Christmas in terms of staying power as it has reached multiple generations of children and adults for so long. This is a personal favorite and like Home Alone any rating I could give would be skewed by sentimentality. For the purposes of the film alone I would rate this at 3.5 stars out of 5.
Running Time: 47 minutes