Black SplatMiracle on 34th Street (1947)

"I have great respect for psychiatry—and great contempt for meddling amateurs who go around practicing it!"

Miracle on 34th Street - Kris hits Mr. Sawyer with his cane

Description: Edmund Gwenn as Kris Kringle gives Mr. Sawyer (Porter Hall), a meddling department store employee a piece of his mind in the motion picture Miracle on 34th Street (1947). After telling Mr. Sawyer off, Kris raps him in the head with his cane.

Kris Kringle is a jolly-bearded old man who volunteers to be Santa Claus in the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade when the man hired to do the part is found drunk.

Doris Walker (Maureen O'Hara) sees something special in Kris and asks him to continue his role as Santa Clause inside the Macy's store. Kris is a big success with the children, and with the adults, as well, who are impressed that Macy's Santa would refer them to their competitor's stores, like Gimbles when he felt they had a toy not available at their own.

When Mr. R. H. Macy (Harry Antrim), the owner of the store learns about how Kris' scheme of referring customers to other stores is a great publicity gimmick, he compliments Doris Walker and Mr. Julius Hammershell (Philip Tonge) for instituting such an unorthodox, but popular idea.

Unfortunately, Doris Walker had just fired Kris when she discovered he filled out his employment application with strange facts, including the fact that he believes that he is indeed, the one and only Santa Claus.

Miracle on 34th Street - Macy's Employment record for Kris Kringle

Doris rushes to reinstate Kris, and all goes well until the store psychologist Mr. Granville Sawyer, angers Kris for calling the store's janitor Alfred (Alvin Greenman) disturbed because he loves to play Santa Claus for children during the holidays.

"Yeah, there's a lot of bad 'isms' floatin' around this world, but one of the worst is commercialism. Make a buck, make a buck. Even in Brooklyn it's the same - don't care what Christmas stands for, just make a buck, make a buck." Alfred the janitor at Macys [to Kris Kringle]

Angered, Kris rushes to his office and conks Mr. Sawyer on the head with his cane who pretends to be really hurt which forces the store to send Kris to an asylum. When Mr. Macy learns of the incident, he fires Mr. Sawyer, saying, "Psychologist! Where'd you graduate from, a correspondence school?"

"But...but maybe he's only a little crazy like painters or composers or... or some of those men in Washington." - Mr. Donald Shellhammer

Luckily, Fred Gailey (John Payne), a lawyer friend of Doris Walker decides to take the matter to court and prove that Kris is who he says he is. And so begins a trial that pits the court system of New York City against a child's best friend.

MIracle on 34th Street - Newspaper article on Santa's sanity

Kris Kringle wins the case, however, when the US Postal Service comes to the rescue and delivers to the court house thousands of letters addressed to "Santa Claus."

Fred Gailey: Your Honor, every one of these letters is addressed to Santa Claus. The Post Office has delivered them. Therefore the Post Office Department, a branch of the Federal Government, recognizes this man Kris Kringle to be the one and only Santa Claus.
Judge Harper: Uh, since the United States Government declares this man to be Santa Claus, this court will not dispute it. Case dismissed.

In the end, Kris is released, Doris Walker now believes in the story of Santa Claus, and her daughter's (Natalie Wood) wish to Santa Clause comes true when she finds the house of her dreams where she can live with her mother...and her new father, Mr. Fred Gailey.

Miracle on 34th Street - Movie Poster

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