Thoughts About “Miracle on 34th Street”

I’ve watched this movie every year for more than a decade. It’s the kick-off to the holiday season for me. It starts the day after Thanksgiving. I watch the movie, the 1947 version, as a link to my beloved NYC and the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. Miracle on 34th Street is a 1947 American comedy-drama film written and directed by George Seaton and based on a story by Valentine Davies. Valentine Davies was an American film and TV writer, producer, and director in the late ‘40s and early ‘50s. I would have liked to meet him.

These days, I find I focus on the dialogue, much of it tongue-in-cheek humor with a healthy dose of realism.

Quotes from Miracle on 34th Street

Whether you‘ve seen the movie or not, the following quotes may make sense:

Reframing- It Still Works

Kris Kringle: Talking to Susie, the precocious nine-year-old who does not believe in Santa Claus, elves, fairies, or giants. “Oh, Christmas isn’t just a day, it’s a frame of mind.”   I’ll go with that. When I’m out shopping, eating out, or hiking, folks give a shy smile, a nod of recognition, or even a wide grin when I say, “Happy Holidays, Merry Christmas.” And I think there’s just a little more openness than usual.

There’s Hope for the World

Alfred: the young custodian at Macy’s whose childlike naïveté belies his honesty and understanding of human nature.“There is a lot of bad ‘isms’ floating around this world and one of the worst is commercialism.”

One Man’s Approach to His Moral Dilemma

Mr. Shellhammer: the head of the toy department at Macy’s.  Torn between being honest and downplaying a possible problem in his department to keep profits up, he says of Kris Kringle,“But… but maybe he’s only a little crazy like painters or composers or… or some of those men in Washington.”

‘Nuff said.

A “Reality” Check from Santa Himself

Kris Kringle: “Now wait a minute, Susie. Just because every child can’t get his wish that doesn’t mean there isn’t a Santa Claus.”

Mick Jagger tried a different tack. “You can’t always get what you want.” Of course, in the movie Susie does get what she wants. And I believe Christmas is a frame of mid. Frame your Christmas with openness, a quickness to laugh, forgive, smile, hug.

May you get all that you want this Christmas.

Ethel Lee-Miller blogs regularly about people, the power of words, and the writing life. She’s been immersed in writing for over 30 years, teaching, coaching, editing, and gathering writers to publicly share their work. She is the author of Thinking of Miller Place, and Seedlings, Stories of Relationships. She also enjoys sharing stories at Odyssey Storytelling, Tucson Tellers of Tales, and just about anywhere there’s a mic. 


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *