“The epiphany of movie sentiment and a transcendent experience.” — Dave Kehr
Jimmy Stewart and Frank Capra said multiple times that IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE remained their favorite film. Over time the film has gained notoriety as a seminal holiday classic and has been given the distinction of being a sentimental and sometimes corny gem about what’s important in life. This couldn’t be further from the truth.
In fact, Capra’s film is one of the psychologically darker and emotional rich Hollywood productions of the 1940s. That’s not to say it isn't uplifting, but the undertones, which were no doubt brought upon by each man’s experience in WWII, allow for a very mature and complex experience.
So if you’ve skipped this film because of its reputation as a light, happy Christmas movie do yourself a favor and see this undisputed classic. And if you’re already a fan, nothing says “Merry Christmas, movie house!” like watching it on the big screen at Alamo Drafthouse.