Tag Archives: Jack Elam

SCROOGE’S ROCK AND ROLL CHRISTMAS (1983)

scrooges rock and rollChristmas Carol-A-Thon 2016 continues with another post in Balladeer’s Blog’s annual orgy of entries on various versions of THE Christmas tale. 

Scrooge’s Rock & Roll Christmas grows on me more and more each time I watch it. It’s value as a version of A Christmas Carol is virtually nil, but it features some wonderful renditions of a variety of Yuletide songs along with some striking wintry scenery.

Most sources list this made-for- tv special as a 1984 production, but the actual copyright date on the VHS copy I tracked down says 1983, so that’s what I’m going by. If it first aired in late December 1983 it’s almost a 1984 product anyway so I can see where the confusion might come in.

A better title for this 45 minute novelty item would be Have Yourself A Has- Been Little Christmas since it features appearances by several rock singers who were already two decades past their days as chart- toppers. The premise of this telefilm is that a young lady looking for a record store (and how old does THAT sound these days) instead finds the establishment to be occupied by Ebenezer Scrooge, played by Jack Elam … yes, Jack Elam. Continue reading

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JACK THE RIPPER GOES WEST (1974)

Jack the Ripper Goes WestJACK THE RIPPER GOES WEST (1974) – This hilariously lame horror western was also released under the titles Silent Sentence, A Knife in the Dark and A Knife for the Ladies.

Jack the Ripper Goes West is a horror western that plays like a failed pilot episode for a television series given its mere 51 minute running time. When a rash of Jack the Ripper style murders afflict the western town of Mescal their old-fashioned Sheriff Jarrod (Jack Elam) is aggravated to find himself forced to work with an out of town private detective named Burns (Jeff Cooper). 

If this was indeed once planned as a tv pilot (and the incredibly fake-looking buildings in the town might support that notion) the premise was apparently going to be the clash of old vs new methods of investigating crimes. Elam’s sheriff is an old-fashioned hip-shooting, hard-drinking, saloon-brawling man of the past. Cooper’s private investigator is a sophisticated big city criminologist intent on using modern methodology.   Continue reading

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SCROOGE’S ROCK AND ROLL CHRISTMAS (1983): CAROL-A-THON 2014 CONTINUES

scrooges rock and rollTime for another post in Balladeer’s Blog’s annual orgy of entries on various versions of THE Christmas tale. 

Scrooge’s Rock & Roll Christmas grows on me more and more each time I watch it. It’s value as a version of A Christmas Carol is virtually nil, but it features some wonderful renditions of a variety of Yuletide songs along with some striking wintry scenery. Most sources list this made-for- tv special as a 1984 production, but the actual copyright date on the VHS copy I tracked down says 1983, so that’s what I’m going by. If it first aired in late December 1983 it’s almost a 1984 product anyway so I can see where the confusion might come in.

A better title for this 45 minute novelty item would be Have Yourself A Has- Been Little Christmas since it features appearances by several rock singers who were already two decades past their days as chart- toppers. The premise of this telefilm is that a young lady looking for a record store (and how old does THAT sound these days) instead finds the establishment to be occupied by Ebenezer Scrooge, played by Jack Elam … yes, Jack Elam.

Through some Twilight Zone style shenanigans our heroine – called simply The Girl in the credits – is face-to- face with the actual Scrooge from 1843. It’s pointless to wonder if Scrooge & Marley’s establishment was in the same building that the record store (snicker) is now located in or if The Girl was transported back through time when she entered the place or what. It’s all just a half-assed excuse to have our heroine teach the crotchety Scrooge about the  Christmas Spirit by using her magical snow-globe to show him videos of aging rock singers performing holiday standards. No, I’m serious. 

The segments featuring hilariously lame dialogue between Ebenezer and The Girl serve as bridges between each of the videos, like a Continue reading

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CHRISTMAS CAROL-A-THON 2012: SCROOGE’S ROCK & ROLL CHRISTMAS (1983)

 scrooges rock and rollTime for another post in Balladeer’s Blog’s annual orgy of entries on various versions of THE Christmas tale. The Charles Dickens classic has a certain  timeless charm that ensures it will continue to be adapted for at least another few hundred years. 

Scrooge’s Rock & Roll Christmas grows on me more and more each time I watch it. It’s value as a version of A Christmas Carol is virtually nil, but it features some wonderful renditions of a variety of Yuletide songs along with some striking wintry scenery. Most sources list this made-for- tv special as a 1984 production, but the actual copyright date on the VHS copy I tracked down says 1983, so that’s what I’m going by. If it first aired in late December 1983 it’s almost a 1984 product anyway so I can see where the confusion might come in.

A better title for this 45 minute novelty item would be Have Yourself A Has- Been Little Christmas since it features appearances by several rock singers who were already two decades past their days as chart- toppers. The premise of this telefilm is that a young lady looking for a record store (and how old does THAT sound these days) instead finds the establishment to be occupied by Ebenezer Scrooge, played by Jack Elam … yes, Jack Elam.

Through some Twilight Zone style shenanigans our heroine – called simply The Girl in the credits – is face-to- face with the actual Scrooge from 1843. It’s pointless to wonder if Scrooge & Marley’s establishment was in the same building that the record store (snicker) is now located in or if The Girl was transported back through time when she entered the place or what. It’s all just a half-assed excuse to have our heroine teach the crotchety Scrooge about the  Christmas Spirit by using her magical snow-globe to show him videos of aging rock singers performing holiday standards. No, I’m serious. 

The segments featuring hilariously lame dialogue between Ebenezer and The Girl serve as bridges between each of the videos, like a Continue reading

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CHRISTMAS SEASON DIVERSION: A FEW MORE LESSER KNOWN VERSIONS OF A CHRISTMAS CAROL

TIme for a few more under-the-radar versions of A Christmas Carol. First off is the 1970 version that was first televised on Christmas Day on England’s Anglia Television. Paul Honeyman (who also produced) narrates, or rather, reads aloud from his personally edited version of the Dickens classic while all we see on-screen are a series of beautiful watercolor paintings by John Worsley depicting scenes from the story to Continue reading

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