Miracle on 34th St.

Miracle on 34th St.

1947 (George Seaton) G, 96 minutes

Maureen O'Hara; Natalie Wood; Edmund Gwenn

Kris Kringle (Edmund Gwenn), visits New York. He meets a busy Macy's event planner, Doris Walker (Maureen O'Hara) and her practical daughter Susie (Natalie Wood), who doesn't believe in Santa Claus. So Kris takes a job as the season's department store helper to set things right. John Payne co-stars as the slightly uninteresting, but charming, love interest for Doris. Directed by George Seaton, the film begins at the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade and continues through the busy, Christmas shopping season, and it still feels current as well as nostalgic. It captures the hectic mood as well as the little moments of happiness that occur throughout, such as a nice chat or a cup of hot coffee. The characters are smart, the situation is clever, and the pacing is tight, adding up to a terrific perennial holiday classic.

-