by: Gabby Juslin
Christmas time is right around the corner. Everybody knows of the famous movie “What A Wonderful Life”. It seems to be one of the most popular holiday films that everybody watches during Christmas time.
The story of George Bailey’s life growing up as a child and always wanting to leave his home town of Bedford Falls, but as hard as he tries he can’t seem to break away. Every opportunity he got to leave the town something would come up with his family to where he put their best interests over his and in a way let them take advantage of his generosity.
He meets this girl that becomes the love of his life, her name was Mary. They get married and right before they leave George’s family bank becomes bankrupt and he had to use his honeymoon money to help get the bank back on its feet. This was the beginning of the end for George Bailey’s sanity. He always had this feeling that he had been deprived of his true calling and what he really wanted to do in life. He became trapped in the same routine and got to his breaking point to where he thought committing suicide would be a better option than to keep living.
Fortunately George had a guardian angel named Clarence. Right before George jumps off the bridge Clarence stops him and saves his life. George wishes that he had never been born, and to show him what life would have really been like without him. At first George doesn’t believe that Clarence is an angel and doesn’t believe that he could just erase him from the earth.
But in fact Clarence does just that! George spends what seems like an evening trying to put back his life back together, and yet no one recognizes him. Throughout this horrible time George realizes how important and how special his life actually was. He begs for Clarence to give him another chance, another opportunity to make a difference.
Once he returns back into the real world he rushes back to his home where he is greeted with open arms by his family. And just as the scene closes and everything is being put back in place, a single bell rings. This meaning that Clarence received his wings, that had been his reward for helping out George find the real meaning of his life. This is an incredible Christmas story and brings out a huge lesson in which your life does matter, even though you might feel helpless or worthless, believe it that you matter.
As Christians we are forever welcomed into God’s family, we matter to him and he cares for you. It doesn’t matter what others say about you or if people think you aren’t cool enough, what truly matters is what God thinks about you. And he sees you as a perfect part of him, and one of his children forever. As it says in Psalm 139:13-14 “For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well.”
One of the funny things that I found out about the movie is that the “snow storm” was actually filmed in 92-degree weather and the “snow flakes” were actually soap suds!
And if you watch the movie you can see George Bailey sweating right before he jumps over the bridge, it is a good effect because he is supposed to be stressed out. In reality he is actually just sweating from the heat.
Another funny slip is “In the scene where Uncle Billy (Thomas Mitchell) is leaving George’s house drunk, he walks off camera and sounds as if he stumbles over a pile of garbage cans. In reality a young crew member had dropped some equipment at the moment Mitchell walked off camera. Both Mitchell and Stewart continued the scene with Mitchell improvising the line “I’m alright! I’m all right.” If you look closely at Jimmy Stewart’s reaction you will see him almost laugh but he stays in character. The crewman believed he was about to be fired but Capra liked the moment so much he kept it in the film and gave the crewman a $10 bonus.”