“Christmas Eve” is a 1949 short film directed by James Sibley Watson and Melville Webber, featuring the Ruggles family on Christmas Eve.
The film begins with the Ruggles family preparing for Christmas Eve. The father, a printer, is working on printing a Christmas story while his wife and children decorate the tree and prepare the meal. As the family gathers around the tree, the father reads the story he has printed, “The Night Before Christmas.”
After the story, the family sings Christmas carols together. Suddenly, they hear a knock on the door. It is a poor woman with a baby, seeking shelter from the cold. The Ruggles family welcomes her in and offers her food and a place to rest. As the night goes on, more people arrive seeking shelter, including a group of carolers and a homeless man.
The Ruggles family continues to welcome each person with open arms, sharing what little they have and spreading the joy of Christmas. As the night comes to a close, the father reflects on the true meaning of Christmas and the importance of kindness and generosity.
The film ends with the family gathered around the tree once again, singing “Silent Night” and sharing the love and warmth of the holiday season.
Howard Wright, Irving Phillips
Charles Ruggles, Erin O’Brien-Moore, Margaret Kerry